Undergraduate Course

BA Childhood Studies

(Including Foundation Year)

BA Childhood Studies

Overview

The details
Childhood Studies (Including Foundation Year)
L523
October 2018
Full-time
4 years
Colchester Campus
Essex Pathways

Our four-year BA Childhood Studies (including foundation year), will be suitable for you if your academic qualifications do not yet meet our entrance requirements for the three-year version of this course and you want a programme that increases your subject knowledge as well as improves your academic skills in order to support your academic performance.

This four-year course includes a foundation year (Year Zero), followed by a further three years of study. During your Year Zero, you study three academic subjects relevant to your chosen course as well as a compulsory academic skills module.

After successful completion of Year Zero in our Essex Pathways Department, you progress to complete your course with our Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies.

From year one you will continue developing your academic skills alongside discovering what drives children’s development, what informs their behaviour and what shapes their identity. Children today face a wide range of new and challenging experiences, including unprecedented access to media, wider cultural diversity, online bullying and larger school numbers. Their early experiences of childhood affect them for the rest of their lives. You can make a positive contribution to these formative years.

Childhood studies is a vibrant and exciting field which has expanded in recent years to include knowledge from psychology, sociology and psychoanalysis. This course lays the foundations for a career working with infants and children, whether in education, health care or children’s services. You gain a solid understanding of child development, the ecology of childhood (the place of children in different societies) and many other exciting topics including:

  • Psychosocial approaches
  • Child development and attachment theory
  • Understanding ADHD, developmental trauma and Autism
  • Criminological approaches
  • Play and infant observation
  • Children in literature
  • Therapeutic work in groups
  • Wellbeing and resilience
  • Psychodynamics of teaching, learning and group work

Our Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies is internationally recognised as one of the leading departments for work on the role of the unconscious mind in mental health, as well as in culture and society more generally. We’re ranked top 10 in the UK for research (REF, 2014) and consistently receive high student satisfaction scores, including 94% student satisfaction (NSS, 2017).

Why we're great.
  • Our students are extremely happy - we rank highly for student satisfaction.
  • 83% of our undergraduates are in professional employment or postgraduate study within six months of graduating (DLHE 2016).
  • Our students learn in small groups with expert practitioners and academics.

Our expert staff

We have some of the best teachers across the University in our Essex Pathways Department, all of whom have strong subject backgrounds and are highly skilled in their areas.

Our staff blend clinical and professional experience and expertise in their field with the academic rigour that our Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies is known for. You’re taught by lecturers who have years of experience working directly with troubled individuals and groups in specialist settings. This means they are seasoned researchers in the field of childhood and psychoanalytic studies, but also draw upon years of clinical experience as teachers, psychotherapists, and therapeutic community practitioners.

This course is led by Dr Chris Nicholson, who has more than 15 years’ experience working in residential childcare and therapeutic communities for children. He's also managed an adolescent assessment unit and runs a variety of children’s activities and groups for Colchester Mind’s, The Junction. Further, he sits on the Advisory Board for Children and Young People at the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Therapeutic Communities section, and regularly speaks at both national and international conferences.

Our staff specialise in areas ranging from creative therapies for children and adolescents, to organisational dynamics, to the practice of psychotherapy, to psychodynamic counselling with children and adolescents.

Specialist facilities

You will experience a lively, informal environment with a number of specialist facilities:

  • At our Colchester Campus, you have access to The Albert Sloman Library which houses a collection of books, journals, electronic resources and major archives
  • Our Department has its own dedicated library of specialist texts which inform and influence our research
  • Attend free evening Open Seminars on topics relevant to childhood studies, education, mental health and psychosocial studies which are open to students, staff and members of the public.

Your future

Whether you want to work with infants in the nursery, children with emotional and behavioural difficulties in children’s homes, support those with learning difficulties, or go on into teaching, our course prepares you to make a difference to children’s lives. Put theory into practice by carrying out reflective practice through infant observation, and a work placement. These give you invaluable experience within your chosen sector.

We help you to explore and understand the kind of role you’re preparing for so you graduate with a valuable balance of theoretical understanding and useful practical experience – rare qualities giving you the edge needed to successfully gain employment upon graduation. There are a range of jobs directly related to this degree including early years teachers, family support workers, learning support workers, primary and secondary teacher, special needs teachers and social workers.

After taking this degree you can also enter further study or training to become a:

  • Child psychotherapist
  • Children’s nurse
  • Community development worker
  • Counsellor
  • Arts Therapist
  • Educational psychologist
  • Speech and language therapist

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A-levels: DDD, or equivalent in UCAS tariff points, to include 2 full A-levels.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here.Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 5.5 overall. Specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK.

Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels required. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications

If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

Our Year 0 courses are only open to UK and EU applicants. If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to your chosen degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College.

Structure

Example structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of compulsory and optional modules chosen from lists. Below is just one example structure from the current academic year of a combination of modules you could take. Your course structure could differ based on the modules you choose.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore all modules listed are subject to change. To view the compulsory modules and full list of optional modules currently on offer, please view the programme specification via the link below.

Major Writers in English Literature

Want to study Hamlet? And contemporary works by Angela Carter or Kazuo Ishiguru? Interested in World War One poetry? Study a range of drama, poetry and prose fiction. Describe, analyse and reflect on key texts from Shakespeare to the present day. Become familiar with the crucial terms for assessing literature.

View Major Writers in English Literature on our Module Directory

Political and Social Theory From Plato to the Present Day

How did Plato and Aristotle influence Western political thought? How do you study class or gender today? What impact does globalisation have? Examine the history of social and political theory, critically analysing current issues. Understand key topics in politics and sociology for further study of the social sciences and humanities.

View Political and Social Theory From Plato to the Present Day on our Module Directory

Philosophy: Fundamental Questions, Major Thinkers

What can we know? How should we live? Study two important areas of philosophy – epistemology and ethics. Examine the work of key thinkers and understand the major themes in Western philosophy. Analyse contemporary issues using philosophical arguments. Become confident in the expression of your own thoughts and ideas.

View Philosophy: Fundamental Questions, Major Thinkers on our Module Directory

Understanding Individuals Groups and Organisations : An Introduction to Psychodynamic Concepts

How do unconscious dynamics work in individuals, groups and organisations? How can psychodynamic insight be applied to this? Explore how individuals affect one another, how institutions affect those who work there and vice versa. Understand key concepts in psychodynamic thinking and how to apply this to individuals, groups and workplaces.

View Understanding Individuals Groups and Organisations : An Introduction to Psychodynamic Concepts on our Module Directory

Assignment and Research Writing for Psychoanalytic Studies

Want guidance in understanding your course? Know how your academic skills will transfer to the world of work? Develop your abilities to undertake independent research. Learn to read critically and to write clearly. Build the employability skills that will help you during your studies and after graduation.

View Assignment and Research Writing for Psychoanalytic Studies on our Module Directory

Introduction to Childhood Studies

In this module you will explore childhood from a local and a global perspective. You will discover a broad range of topics related to children and childhood, including psychology, sociology, history, media, law and education.

View Introduction to Childhood Studies on our Module Directory

Perspectives in Child Development

Expand on your knowledge of perspectives and theoretical approaches relating to child development. This module focuses on developmental psychology and includes psychoanalytic and psycho-dynamic theories.

View Perspectives in Child Development on our Module Directory

Placement Based Observation Skills and Reflective Practice

For this module you will undertake a placement where you have the opportunity to gain hands on experience. This placement will be within the children’s sector, for example a nursery, a school or a children’s centre. You will have guidance and support from your supervisor throughout your placement.

View Placement Based Observation Skills and Reflective Practice on our Module Directory

Professional Practice in Careers with Children

In this module you will develop your understanding of childhood studies and childcare practice and explore employability and career options within this field. You will have the opportunity to think about your future career aspirations and learn about the graduate employment market.

View Professional Practice in Careers with Children on our Module Directory

Where the Wild Things Are: Children in Literature

This module explored a wide range of children’s fiction, both written for children and about children. You read and analyse popular children’s literature from ‘Where the Wild Things are’ to ‘Matilda’. You will build your knowledge of how the perceptions of childhood have changed over the last century and the types of ideals being projected onto the world of children through literature.

View Where the Wild Things Are: Children in Literature on our Module Directory

Infant Observation

Explore the variety of ways in which you can research and record the activities of infants. You will have the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in observing the early developments of an infant and build on your experiences of psychoanalytic observation.

View Infant Observation on our Module Directory

Developmental Trauma, Autism and ADHD

Study a range of difficulties encountered by some children, such as developmental trauma, autism and ADHD. Learn how these can impact on children’s development and increase your knowledge of the strategies that have been developed to try and improve their situation.

View Developmental Trauma, Autism and ADHD on our Module Directory

The Social History of Childhood

Consider the ways in which childhood has changed throughout history. In this module you will explore how the concept of childhood has developed particularly from eighteenth century onwards. This module covers a variety of aspects including religion, education, rights and policies, culture, gender and sexuality.

View The Social History of Childhood on our Module Directory

Therapeutic Practice and Responsibility: Statutory Frameworks (Childhood Studies)

Discover the broad range of policies, ethics and professional conduct in the workplace with regards to children. You will develop an understanding of both the practice related and theoretical aspects and learn how to apply this to the workplace, your discipline and the children you are working with.

View Therapeutic Practice and Responsibility: Statutory Frameworks (Childhood Studies) on our Module Directory

Psychoanalysis and the Child

Examine how object relations theory can relate to the psychoanalysis of children. Explore the difficulties of pursuing psychoanalysis of children and some of the controversies around working with children. You will learn how it should be done, how it is practically and also learn about the theoretical distinctions from building psychoanalysis of adults.

View Psychoanalysis and the Child on our Module Directory

Counselling Skills for Therapeutic Work

How does children and adolescent counselling differ from counselling adults? You will study written material relating to counselling skills with children and adolescents and take part in workshop based learning to support your theoretical understanding. This will involve you presenting and discussing your own work with a child or adolescent to help you develop your clinical skills.

View Counselling Skills for Therapeutic Work on our Module Directory

Therapeutic Work in Groups (Childhood Studies)

During this module you will work in groups with children from a psycho-dynamic perspective. You will develop the essential skills and techniques requires when working in a variety of groups in a professional workplace, including educational and therapeutic. You will explore a range of issues such as dealing with difficult behaviour, gangs, and emotional experiences and consider the support facilitators that are needed.

View Therapeutic Work in Groups (Childhood Studies) on our Module Directory

Childhood Wellbeing: Play, Socialisation and Resilience

Explore children’s well-being through play, socialisation and resilience. Discover how well-being can vary across cultures, both nationally and globally. In this module you will also learn about current issues facing children today such as technology, internet and the effects that this may have on well-being.

View Childhood Wellbeing: Play, Socialisation and Resilience on our Module Directory

Teaching and Learning with Children: A Psychodynamic Approach

Understand what facilitates education and the factors that can also hinder learning. You will explore all areas that can affect a child’s ability to learn, from anxiety to new experiences. You will learn the aspects of learning through a sociological and psycho-social perspective.

View Teaching and Learning with Children: A Psychodynamic Approach on our Module Directory

Dissertation (Childhood Studies)

For this module you will pursue a project based on a topic of your choice. You will have the opportunity to incorporate the theoretical and practical aspects from your course and apply this to your subject area. This project will be supervised by an academic member of staff within the department who will provide advice and guidance throughout your project.

View Dissertation (Childhood Studies) on our Module Directory

Children and Young People: Criminological Approaches - Current Debates

Discover how questions of childhood and youth have driven wider debates in criminology and sociology. Ask why, how, and with what, effects children and young people have been constructed as subjects with rights, relational citizens with needs, offenders to be reformed or punished, and victims to be protected. Explore children and young people’s experiences of (il)legal youth cultures, systems of youth justice, education, child protection, family intervention and other efforts to counter social exclusion.

View Children and Young People: Criminological Approaches - Current Debates on our Module Directory

Teaching

  • Teaching takes place through lectures and seminars often in relatively small groups, with a focus on group interaction and discussion
  • Discussion in seminars includes discussing theoretical ideas, how these might apply to practice and discussing your own experiences and observation on placement
  • You will also participate in skills based workshops, debates, observation seminars, reflective groups and teach others through presentation of theoretical readings and practice case examples

Assessment

  • Your grade is made up mainly of coursework marks, including essays, case studies and reflective reports. There are exams, but these are infrequent

Fees and funding

Home/EU fee

£9,250

International fee

TBC

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

Home and EU fee information

International fee information

What's next

Open Days

Our events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. We run a number of Open Days throughout the year which enable you to discover what our campus has to offer. You have the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to book a campus tour here.

2018 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Saturday, June 23, 2018

Applying

Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Applications are online at: www.ucas.com. Full details on this process can be obtained from the UCAS website in the how to apply section.

Our UK students, and some of our EU and international students, who are still at school or college, can apply through their school. Your school will be able to check and then submit your completed application to UCAS. Our other international applicants (EU or worldwide) or independent applicants in the UK can also apply online through UCAS Apply.

The UCAS code for our University of Essex is ESSEX E70. The individual campus codes for our Loughton and Southend Campuses are ‘L’ and ‘S’ respectively.

Applicant Days and interviews

Resident in the UK? If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend one of our applicant days. These run from January to April and give you the chance to explore the campus, meet our students and really get a feel for life as an Essex student.

Some of our courses also hold interviews and if you’re invited to one, this will take place during your applicant day. Don’t panic, they’re nothing to worry about and it’s a great way for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the course. Some of our interviews are one-to-one with an academic, others are group activities, but we’ll send you all the information you need beforehand.

If you’re outside the UK and are planning a trip, feel free to email visit@essex.ac.uk so we can help you plan a visit to the University.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

We want you to throw yourself in at the deep end, soak up life and make the most of those special Essex moments.

Home to over 13,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

 

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tours allows you to explore our University from the comfort of your home. Check out our Colchester virtual tour and Southend virtual tour to see accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

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