The following employment-based core modules are normally included in this course (20 credits each):
Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood
This module develops knowledge, skills and concepts through a critical understanding of the complexity of factors that impact upon the growth and development of young children. For example you might explore the debates and philosophies surrounding the education and care of young children in the UK and around the world. You will be encouraged to reflect upon the ways in which your own values influence your thinking and the impact on the choices you will make on behalf of children and families in your future careers.
Protection, Power and Participation
This course module provides you with opportunities to explore, analyse and critically evaluate the concepts of protection, power and participation in different contexts and from a range of perspectives. Through discussion you can explore and analyse the implications of these concepts for children, families, society, services and professionals.
Leadership and Management in Early Years
The focus of this module is to examine the key concepts, definitions, theories and philosophies relating to early childhood leadership and management and debate the relationships between theory, policy, research, and ethical practice in the context of leading and managing change. You will identify the key management and leadership styles, roles and theories alongside the challenges and constraints required for leadership and management in a range of contemporary early years professionals within a multi-professional framework.
Knowledge and understanding of the purpose, scope and breadth of social pedagogy in the context of meeting the changing needs of the child is the focal point of this module. Theoretical perspectives of pedagogy will be examined within the context of leading practice and leading change. You will critically explore and examine creative approaches to social pedagogy and how this links to relationships with children, for example, through the key person approach, and quality frameworks that aim to enhance experiences and outcomes for children.
Early Childhood Independent Study (40 credits)
This module provides you with an opportunity to follow a sustained line of enquiry in an area of interest related to early childhood and to produce a high quality structured and relevant research project which may inform future career development.
One of the ‘core’ modules listed above may be replaced by an alternative module. These are listed below. Each year the Stakeholder Committee will review the curriculum offered and may decide to offer one of the following employment-based, likely optional modules:
Law, the Child and the Family
Traditionally the family has been regarded as a husband, wife and children. Family law is still very much involved in the dynamics of this traditional unit and policy-makers are concerned to preserve it. However, the statistics make it clear that we are undergoing a process of radical family restructuring away from marriage and family law has extended its boundaries to include other types of family unit. This module is designed to provide an insight into the legal intervention into different types of family structures and the impact of government policy.
Curriculum, Policy and Practice
The main aim of this module is to foster knowledge and understanding of curriculum models within an historical, political and ideological context. You will recognise the historical progression of government policies and statutory curriculum models and will have the opportunity to apply previous knowledge in developing a critical understanding of early years practice and encounter alternative European models and theoretical models of how children learn, to identify and examine what constitutes an appropriate pedagogical approach.
Values into Action
This module supports critical engagement with a principle-infused philosophy towards early childhood and in particular, their early childhood care and education experiences. You will reflect on and develop your knowledge and understanding about approaches to early childhood care and education that are embedded within a values framework, including an approach to inclusion that is concerned with inclusive values and a participatory democratic framework for early childhood care and education services.
Special Educational Needs
This module enables you to explore, in depth, an area of interest within Special Educational Needs. The module considers aspects such as, Autism, Speech and Language, ADHD, Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy and physical and sensory impairment alongside issues of disability, discrimination and equality in society, and particularly for young children in schools. It will also deliberate on the range of services available for young adults.
Leadership and Management in Early Years
This option seeks to involve students in identifying and analysing current research related to the role of the early years leader. Theoretical discussions on leadership styles, traits and characteristics will be explored. The challenges and constraints related to leading change will be presented and critically explored. Strategic and operational leadership within the context of establishing and sustaining a strong sense of vision and the necessary underpinning values will be the focus for learning and professional development.
Leading Effective Pedagogy
The aim of this module is to develop your critical knowledge and understanding of the purpose, scope and breadth of leading pedagogy in early childhood education and care settings. Theoretical perspectives of pedagogy will be critically examined within the contexts of leadership of others and your own personal practice, together with quality frameworks, in order to improve experiences and outcomes for children.
Leading Reflective Practice
The aim of this module is to enable you to critically examine the role the reflective practitioner that is central to practice in early childhood education and care. It is also a characteristic of effective Early Years leaders who use reflective thinking and behaviour in their leadership.
Leading Practice and Supporting Others
You are encouraged to draw on your experiences of working with children and their families and engage in critical reflection, strategic thinking and planning in relation to your own personal and career aspirations. The module will build on previous learning related to your values base, ethical decision making, and professionalism, continuing professional development and the importance of working with others towards common goals.
Global perspectives of Children’s Health
This module aims to give you the opportunity to analyse and critically evaluate children’s health issues both nationally and internationally. You will evaluate different aspects and contexts of health, including the social, political, environmental and economic contexts of different health systems.