MA Education (Early Years)

Place yourself at the cutting edge of early childhood care and education, while developing as a forward-thinking early years professional on a programme delivered using a hybrid learning model.

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    • Overview

      Covid-19 - Education (Early Years) Essential Information

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      Course Length: 3 Years Part-Time
      Start Dates: September 2021, September 2022
      Subjects: Education and Teaching
      Location: Edge Hill University

      The MA Education (Early Years) has been designed to meet the interests and professional development needs of a range of early years and other professionals who are working in education and related settings, such as health and social care and social services. The programme combines perspectives from early years education, and other relevant disciplines, to ensure you can deliver highly effective practice in today’s multi-dimensional early childhood environment. You will engage in cutting-edge research and enhance your understanding of the nature of educational enquiry and the analytical processes that support research-informed practice. If you are seeking to enhance your capacity to make thoughtful and reflective decisions about your role and your early years practice, ensuring that you are creating an environment that nurtures playful pedagogies and rich learning experiences for early years children, then this is the programme for you.

      You will benefit from exceptional personalised support, tailored to your individual professional interests and needs, and a flexible hybrid delivery model where you will normally attend classes online and on campus. The blend of students from different professional backgrounds will enable discussion, debate and the sharing of experiences, facilitated by staff who are experts in early years education theory and practice. You will also develop essential transferable skills, from purposeful and effective communication to utilising a range of media, making justifiable decisions in complex and unpredictable situations, and planning appropriate targets for improvement.

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      In Depth

      What will I study?

      The overall focus of the programme is on equipping you with comprehensive, theoretical, research-informed knowledge and an understanding of differing educational perspectives and diverse contexts.

      Key themes include the nature of reflective and reflexive practice, the role of play in early years education, international perspectives on early years research and practice, and educational leadership.

      Supporting your personal professional development and enhancing your research skills are essential elements of the programme, preparing you for completing an independent research project on a relevant topic of your choice.

      How will I study?

      An innovative hybrid blend of practical workshops, lectures and tutorial support provides a rich mix of experiences and modes of learning. The hybrid delivery model means that tutors will present sessions face-to-face and/or via a virtual classroom, ensuring a flexible approach where the location and mode of delivery can fit around the busy schedules of working professionals.

      Taught sessions are built around dialogue, discussion and collaborative learning, with tutor support and expertise immediately at hand. Teaching is interactive, experiential and innovative, using a variety of technologies to enhance your learning, from presentation tools and virtual classrooms to mixed media, social media and mobile technologies. The programme will be tailored to enable you to focus your learning on your individual interests and professional requirements.

      Each 30-credit module may typically involve four face-to-face or virtual classroom sessions, a significant amount of private study and reading, as well as independent research.

      How will I be assessed?

      You will be assessed through a combination of 5,000-word written assignments, project work, portfolios and presentations, as well as a 15,000-word dissertation. Opportunities to receive formative feedback are embedded into each module.

      Who will be teaching me?

      The programme is delivered by a team of research-active academic staff who have extensive expertise in education and its related disciplines.

      The work of the programme team has national and international impact, contributing to and informing early years curricula and learning techniques, both in the UK and overseas.

      Their research interests include early learning, educational policy and practice, educational leadership, as well as research methods and methodologies.

      A Great Study Environment

      The Faculty of Education has been at the forefront of teacher education for 135 years and today enjoys the enviable position of being one of the country’s leading providers of education, training and research for the children’s workforce.

      Housed in a state-of-the-art £9m building, the Faculty of Education’s facilities include a 300-seat lecture theatre, five well-equipped ICT suites, and 18 teaching rooms complete with the latest technology.

      The faculty has a strong commitment to practice-based learning and has developed partnerships with over 2,000 schools and colleges, local authorities and professional associations.

      Modules

      Expand All

      PRL4015The Reflexive Practitioner (30 credits)

      The Reflexive Practitioner introduces you to what it means to critically reflect on practice, in diverse ways, in a range of professional settings. You will consider the nature and features of critically reflective practice, identify models of reflective practice and be guided in how to explore the relevance and application of these models to your own practice. You will examine ‘problems of practice’ and discover how to interrogate both your own thinking and its articulation in practice. The theory and practice from this module will facilitate your professional development and learning throughout your career.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      PRL4020Research Planning in Education (30 credits)

      Research Planning in Education introduces you to research design in professional practice and research. The module will build your understanding of research design to enable you to generate and frame clear and theoretically robust research proposals. You will apply and develop knowledge of educational research paradigms, ethics, values and methodologies. Developing academic literacy, as well as critical and analytical skills. you will formulate and prepare a research proposal and ethics application.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      PRL4021Developing Practice: The Dissertation (60 credits)

      Developing Practice: The Dissertation provides an opportunity to synthesise the knowledge and skills you have gained on the programme and demonstrate a sound understanding of the links between theory, policy and practice. You will carry out a sustained piece of independent research on a relevant topic of your choice. You will also have the opportunity to undertake data collection and analysis in a way which is appropriate to your research question and report on the significance of your findings.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will select two of the following modules:

      PRL4029The Power of Playful Pedagogies (30 credits)

      The Power of Playful Pedagogies provides an advanced overview of play and playful pedagogies within the field of early years education. This is achieved through engaging you in high levels of critical thinking about the current discourses and research related to the field of play in children’s early years education. You will focus on play as a pedagogy in early years from diverse personal and professional perspectives. You will also explore contemporary research about the role of play in different pedagogies, cultures and societies, examining the tensions and challenges associated with promoting playful pedagogies within specific policy agendas.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      PRL4030Educational Leadership in Context (30 credits)

      Educational Leadership in Context enables you to critically analyse educational leadership from multiple theoretical perspectives. The module will equip you with a broad understanding of the factors that affect leaders’ ability to influence, motivate and enable others to contribute towards the effectiveness and success of the organisation in which they are members. The aim is to enable you to develop a persuasive critical argument that extends and challenges contemporary understanding of leadership practice. The module will engage you in a critical and evaluative discussion of contemporary leadership theories and frameworks, as well as their application in practice, through linking to your own educational practice and future career development. You will gain insight into the multi-faceted nature of leadership, with a particular focus on its role in advancing social justice and enacting effective change in national and international contexts.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      PRL4031Learning from International Perspectives in the Early Years (30 credits)

      Learning from International Perspectives in the Early Years places you at the cutting edge of contemporary debates, competing and contesting dominant discourses within early years education from an international perspective. The module examines the complexities of policies and practices that early years teachers and professionals must navigate in order to explore new approaches to working within a highly regulated policy context. There is a specific focus on international perspectives of early years education within the module, including the influential approaches of Reggio Emilia, Scandinavia and New Zealand. You will advance your knowledge and understanding of different curriculum models and develop a personal area of specialist knowledge, demonstrating critical understanding of the implications and potential impact of this new knowledge on your professional practice.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.

      Timetables

      You can expect to receive your timetable at enrolment. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day or evening of the week.

      Disclaimer

      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

      Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

      Entry Criteria

      Entry Requirements

      You should have a degree equivalent to UK first-class or second-class honours (2:2 or above) in a relevant subject or have a Masters degree or equivalent in a relevant field.

      If you do not meet the above requirements but have two or more years of relevant work experience, you are encouraged to apply. Relevant work experience could include working in a school or other educational setting, youth and community work, or an educational role in the public or private sector.

      All applicants must be employed in, or have sustained and appropriate voluntary access to, a relevant professional setting.

      Recognition of Prior Learning

      Recognition of prior learning opportunities may be available on a case-by-case basis.

      Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’). This may include credit or learning undertaken at another university.

      Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. You can discuss this with the pathway leader and get further guidance. You may also wish to consult the University’s academic regulations (sections C7 and F3.1).

      Career Prospects

      What are my career prospects?

      Preparing you for a wide variety of roles across the education workforce in the UK and internationally, this MA can enhance your professional career opportunities and employability.

      On successful completion of the programme, you will be equipped with the knowledge and skills required to make a significant and positive contribution to a range of early childhood education and care practice developments and enhancement initiatives.

      You will graduate well placed to apply for more senior positions both within your current workplace and with other providers. The skills and experience acquired through this MA will also provide you with essential preparation for progressing onto research qualifications, such as a PhD or Professional Doctorate.

      Finance

      Tuition Fees

      Tuition fees for part-time study on this MA are:

      • £34 per credit for UK students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2021/22. This is equivalent to £1,020 per 30 credit module;
      • £39 per credit for UK students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2022/23. This is equivalent to £1,170 per 30 credit module.

      180 credits are required to complete a Masters degree.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.

      The University may administer a small inflationary rise in part-time postgraduate tuition fees in subsequent academic years as you progress through the course.

      Financial Support

      For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining postgraduate courses at Edge Hill University in academic year 2021/22, together with details of how to apply for potential funding, please view our Money Matters 2021/22 guide at www.edgehill.ac.uk/postgradfinance2021.

      Financial support arrangements for eligible UK students joining postgraduate courses in academic year 2022/23 are still to be announced. You are advised to check this page regularly and once the position has been confirmed we will update this information.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals should ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). Please see www.edgehill.ac.uk/eufinance for further details.

      Apply

      How to Apply

      There is an online application process for this programme.

      Please choose the application form for your preferred intake date and mode of study.

      Visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/applydirect for more information about the application process.

      Visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/applydirect to access the relevant online application form and to find out more about the application process.

      Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/studentterms.

      Get in Touch

      If you have any questions about this programme, please contact:

      If you would like to talk to the programme leader about the course in more detail, please contact:

      Course Changes

      Expand All This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years.

      22nd June 2021 - Clarification of Entry Requirements

      Recognition of Prior Learning updated to clarify that opportunities may be available on a case-by-case basis.

      Covid-19 - Education (Early Years) Essential Information

      Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.


      Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.