Dissertation MA Childhood and Youth
Run by School of Educational Sciences
60.000 Credits or 30.000 ECTS Credits
Semester 1 & 2
Organiser: Dr Anne-Marie Smith
Overall aims and purpose
The aim of the dissertation module is to enable students to demonstrate thorough insight and knowledge of an issue or issues relevant to the lives of children and young people, via ethical and rigorous research. The Dissertation is a core element of the MA Childhood and Youth (it constitutes one-third of the MA degree), and is undertaken on completion of the taught modules. The dissertation is 20,000 words in length and will relate broadly to the field of Childhood and Youth Studies. The dissertation topic is based on student's area of interest or current practice, but will need to be of relevance to the context of childhood and youth, directly or indirectly. Under the guidance of a dissertation supervisor, students will undertake their MA dissertation work independently. Choice of topics can be discussed with the course director so that appropriate supervision can be allocated. The choice of dissertation topic can be based on areas covered in the modules or related to students' areas of professional practice.
- Group seminars
- Individual supervision meetings
- Independent study and research
Supervision meetings will include discussion and guidance relating to: * Research questions and aims of the study * Timeline for completion of the dissertation * Procedures and documentation for ethical approval * Key literature and debates within the relevant field * Preparing a sound literature review * Methodology and methods for the project * Planning the data collection process * Organising and analysing data * Critical reflection and reflexivity about the research process * Implications of the research on academic debates and professional practice
70-89%Work displays comprehensive knowledge and critical understanding of the chosen research topic in relation to the broader context of Childhood and Youth Studies. Discussion reflects extensive engagement with key literature and significant insight into major areas of debate. The work is highly focussed, well structured, logically presented and with defended arguments. Methodological issues are carefully and critically explored. Data is presented, analysed and discussed logically and coherently, offering important and deep consideration of the potential impact of findings.The work contains original interpretation and new links between topics are developed. The work is presented to a high standard with accurate communication and no factual or computational errors. 90-100% Outstanding: Dissertation achieving this grade demonstrate exceptional scholarship that is worthy of publication, or is instrumental in developing professional practice.
60-69%:Work displays sound knowledge and understanding of chosen research topic but with some limitations in relation to the broader field of Childhood and Youth studies. There is evidence of some engagement with relevant literature and broader debates. The work had a defined and logical structure but with some weaknesses in the way in which arguments are presented. Methodological issues are well explored, but limited in depth. Data is presented, analysed and discussed quite clearly, but with limited consideration of the potential impact of findings.There is some original interpretation and demonstration of links between topics. The work is presented carefully with accurate communication and few factual or computational errors
50-59% pass: The work demonstrates some reasonable knowledge and understanding of key areas and debates, but there is limited evidence of originality or of wider engagement with literature within the field of Childhood and Youth studies. The work contains some irrelevant material and weaknesses in structure. Arguments are presented but they lack overall coherence. Methodological issues are given some attention. Presentation and discussion of data lacks coherence, offering little or no insight into the potential impact of findings.The work contains factual/computational errors with little evidence of insight or consideration of potential impact of findings. There are some weaknesses in the standard of the presentation and its accuracy
Critically analyse and evaluate contemporary debates drawn from academic research in the field of childhood and youth studies;
Show significant insight into methodological and ethical issues pertinent to research involving or about children and/or young people
Demonstrate the insight and qualities of a reflective and reflexive researcher
Critically evaluate and discuss research literature aligned to chosen research topic
Competently understand, evaluate and apply research methodology and methods pertinent to their area of research
Generate, analyse and discuss research findings coherently and critically
|Disseration MA Childhood and Youth||100.00|
Teaching and Learning Strategy
Students conducting empirical research will plan fieldwork accordingly; in terms of hours/days this will vary depending on projects.
It is expected that students will undertake an extensive number of hours of private study across the lifetime of their Dissertation. It is anticipated that this will include * literature searches using relevant Databases * focused reading and note-taking * time-management, planning and organisation of materials/writing,
Individual supervision meetings: These meetings will be a mixture of face to face, email or Skype contact. Meetings may be longer and more frequent at the inital stages of planning the dissertation; total 20 hours across semester 1 (weeks 15 to 26) and into the summer writing-up period.
|Practical classes and workshops||
Students will attend relevant research seminars, conferences and/or training sessions within the School of Education and externally. This will vary from year to year according to what is available, but MA students will be encouraged to participate as much as possible (and feasible within individual work plans) in postgraduate forums, training days, seminars or conferences.
- 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.
- Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
- Caring - Showing concern for others; caring for children, people with disabilities and/or the elderly
- Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
- 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
- Show originality in the application of subject specific knowledge and understanding.
- Adopt an ethically sound approach to research with children and vulnerable adults.
Resource implications for students
Students will pay the standard university fees for Masters programmes. Students are also required to pay the fee for a DBS check.
Talis Reading listhttp://readinglists.bangor.ac.uk/modules/xme-4102.html
(to be updated) Biggam, J. (2015) Succeeding with your Masters Dissertation: A step-by-step Handbook, McGraw-Hill Education Cohen et al. (2007) Research Methods in Education, 4th ed. London: Croom Helm Christensen, P. and James, Allison (2009) Research with Children: perspectives and practices, Routledge Costello , P J M (2011), Effective Action Research, (2nd edition) London, Continuum Heath, S., Brooks, R., Cleaver, E., and Ireland, E. (2009) Researching Young People’s Lives, London: Sage Steinberg, S.R. and Ibrahim, A. (2015) (eds) Critically Researching Youth (Critical Qualitative Research), Peter Lang Publishing Inc. Swetman, D, (2009) Writing your Dissertation, How to Books, Oxford Kellett, M. (2010) Rethinking Children and Research, Attitudes in Contemporary Society, London/New York: Continuum Thomas, G. (2009) How to do your Research Project, London: Sage Tisdall, E.K., Gallagher, M. and Davies, J. (2009) Researching with children and young people – Research design, methods and analysis, London: Sage Woodman, D. and Bennett, A. (2015) (eds) Youth Cultures, Transitions, and Generations: Bridging the Gap in Youth Research
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- X3BF: MA Childhood and Youth year 1 (MA/CHY)