Intro to Childhood Research
Run by School of Education and Human Development
20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits
Organiser: Mr Gwilym Sion ap Gruffudd
Overall aims and purpose
This module critically discusses Childhood Studies as an international field of academic study. The module will consider the history of Childhood Studies, its development and position in relation to other fields such as sociology, psychology, education and beyond. The module will also identify the importance of research in developing the field. Key terms and ideas within research will be discussed, including an introduction to research design, methodology and context. A key focus of the module will be considering how ‘good’ research in the field is constructed and conducted. The module will discuss the various standpoints of researchers in relation to children and childhood. It will consider how to ensure research is of a good quality and ethical with a specific focus on the ethics of research with children.
The module will set the context for Childhood Studies and research within this field through discussion of the following topics: - The history of Childhood Studies as an academic field. - What makes good quality research? - Key considerations for research with children. - Important terms and ideas that underpin research in Childhood Studies. - How research findings are shared and their importance to practice.
Threshold (D-, D, D+): A satisfactory knowledge and understanding of the academic field of Childhood Studies. Able to give a basic explanation of the key ideas in the field and note the researchers associated with these. An adequate ability to evaluate the quality and reliability of previous research in relation to children and childhood. Able to give a satisfactory account of the key issues in relation to research with children and show an adequate understanding of ethical issues relevant to this work.
Good (C-, C, C+): A good knowledge and understanding of the academic field of Childhood Studies. Able to give a clear and detailed explanation of the key ideas in the field and note the researchers associated with these. A good ability to evaluate the quality and reliability of previous research in relation to children and childhood. Able to give a detailed account of key issues in relation to research with children and show a good understanding of ethical issues relevant to this work.
Excellent (A-, A, A+, A*): A comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the academic field of Childhood Studies Able to give a thorough and well-researched explanation of the key ideas in the field with clear citations to the relevant researchers. An exceptional ability to evaluate the quality and reliability of previous research in relation to children and childhood. Able to give a thorough and considered account of key issues in relation to research with children and show a good understanding of ethical issues relevant to this work.
- Explain how reliable, contemporary research is designed and conducted within Childhood Studies and related fields.
- Discuss the specific issues related to research with children including ethical considerations.
- Evaluate the quality and reliability of previous research in relation to children and childhood.
- Interpret meaning from research sources and apply this to inform discussion and/or practice with children
Teaching and Learning Strategy
Introduction to some key topics in childhood research
Guided discussion of research articles
Individual tutorials for each assignment
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
- Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
- Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
- Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
- Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
- Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
- Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
- Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
- Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
- Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
Subject specific skills
- reflect upon a range of psychological sociological health historical and philosophical perspectives and consider how these underpin different understandings of babies and young children and childhood
- apply multiple perspectives to early childhood issues recognising that early childhood studies involves a range of research methods theories evidence and applications
- integrate ideas and findings across the multiple perspectives in early childhood studies and recognise distinctive early childhood studies approaches to relevant issues
- evaluate competing positions in relation to the construction of babies and young children and childhood by different subjects societal agents and time place and culture
- constructively critique theories practice and research in the area of child development
- reflect upon the ethics of studying babies and young children and their families and communities
Christensen, P. and James, A. (eds) (2008) Research with Children: Perspectives and Practice, 2nd edition, Oxon/New York: Routledge
Heath, S., Brooks, R., Cleaver, E., and Ireland, E. (2009) Researching Young People’s Lives, London: Sage
Kellett, M. (2010) Rethinking Children and Research, Attitudes in Contemporary Society, London/New York: Continuum
Tisdall, E.K., Gallagher, M. and Davies, J. (2009) Researching with children and young people – Research design, methods and analysis, London: Sage
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- X313: BA Childhood and Youth Studies year 1 (BA/CYS)