A Childhood and Youth Studies degree can open the door to a range of rewarding areas of practice working with children and young people.
If you are passionate about achieving the best outcomes for children and young people and you want to learn alongside likeminded people in an innovative learning environment, then the Childhood and Youth Studies degree aims to both excite and challenge you. Our course offers you a flexible learning experience where you can tailor your learning to develop the knowledge skills and experience needed to pursue the particular area work with children and young people you are most passionate about.
While on the course you will have the opportunity to explore important areas of practice, such as education, health and social justice through both in-class learning and practical work experience. You can learn from academics and practice partners who collectively have a vast amount of experience across a range of relevant areas of study and practice. Over the course of your studies you will also have the opportunity to take part in a range of exciting international educational experiences.
The course aims to give you a critical understanding of the most current issues experienced by children and young people, and to equip you to shape the delivery of services to children and young people in your future practice.
Through the course design you should gain a wide range or knowledge, skills and practical experience in areas such as education, mentoring, advocacy, group work, advice and guidance. You will have the opportunity to develop these areas of learning through a combination of in-class workshop guidance, practical application and practice within supported placement settings.
Why choose this course?
If you want to create a better future for the next generation, this exciting course is designed to provide you with the skills, knowledge, sensitivity and understanding to join one of the many professions which deal with social, psychological and educational issues relating to children and young people.
Our multi-disciplinary approach enables you to explore a diverse range of subjects, such as sociology, psychology, health and welfare, safeguarding, education, and policy and practice. This will give you a far deeper insight into the behaviours, attitudes and influences of children and young people in their communities and society at large, considering the impact of class, race, gender, disability, sexuality, religion, poverty, region and nationality.
International perspectives on childhood and youth will be threaded throughout the course, enabling you to develop a global understanding of how the health, wellbeing and social mobility of children and young people are promoted by practitioners. In addition to international study visits and the option of an international placement, we ensure all modules feature internationally relevant content. We will consider how perspectives on notions of ‘childhood and youth’ have developed politically, socially and culturally and the ways in which similar policies have been established in other countries. For example, we consider differing views on the rights of the child around the world and how these might relate to issues such as child labour or differing access to education.
Importantly, you’ll have the opportunity to put theory into practice, gaining relevant experience in a range of organisations at home or abroad, including charities and social enterprises, together with more traditional settings, like local councils and schools. Our students have undertaken placements working for schools (mainstream and specialist), childcare services, youth clubs and projects, social services, homelessness projects and disability support. Our range of international placement settings is growing each year, but to-date students have undertaken placements in the Republic of Ireland, the Netherlands, Spain, South Africa and the United States. As well as developing employability skills, this vital practical experience will increase your understanding of how a wide range of organisations work to develop the aspirations, prospects and quality of life of children and young people.
International experience opportunities
Teaching across all subject areas is informed by international perspectives, and each year we organise a range of international field trips. In the past, students have spent a week in South Africa, attending a range of settings in the Townships, including schools and youth clubs. On another occasion, they visited Stenden University in the Netherlands, visiting a range of educational and social care projects and attending local lectures to study and experience practice in the Netherlands.
In your third year, your work experience can be done within the UK or internationally. We have contacts with a range of placement settings – schools, children’s centres, youth clubs and so on – across the globe, in places, such as South Africa, Spain, New York-USA, Malta, Austria, Finland, and the Netherlands.
We have a student exchange agreement with Laurea University in Finland and Calabria in Italy, where you can choose to work or study. We have also developed a range of associations with institutions across the globe including: The University of Montreal and Dalhousie University in Canada, Stenden University in Netherlands, Stenden University in South Africa, Laurea and Metropolia Universities in Finland, Calabria University in Italy, St. Petersburg University in Russia, Loyola College in India, and the Belarusian State Pedagogical University.
National graduate job destination data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) shows that those with a degree in this subject have entered roles such as classroom and educational assistants, youth workers, child and family support managers, kids’ club co-ordinators, outreach support workers, residential child care workers, as well as more general roles in social enterprises.
The practical nature of the course means you will graduate with placement experience, practical knowledge and problem-solving skills. Upon successful completion of the course, you can move into a range of different child-related professions or take further professional qualifications, such as the PGCE if you would like to enter teaching, or an MA in Social Work if a career as a social worker appeals.