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2024/25 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

EDUC3040 Critical Debates in Childhood and Youth: Research

20 creditsClass Size: 70

Module manager: Prof M Kontopodis

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module draws on ideas about childhood and youth to enable you to analyse the emerging debates about children and young people. The syllabus is continuously updated to enable you to consider the most recent and relevant debates emerging within a range of different contexts including the media, social policy, critical theory and professional practice. It will then encourage students to engage with academic research which deals with such debates and issues. The module will be delivered through interactive lectures to explore critical debates in childhood studies and seminars for support with the assessments. The dynamic nature of this module enables you to engage in the most recent and controversial debates and to consider their implications for childhood and youth in the 21st century.


This module is designed to explore some of the central critical debates pertinent to the study of childhood and youth. The focus of this module is upon the theoretical and research implications of these debates. The module aims to be flexible and responsive to the changing contexts of childhood and youth.
Specifically it aims to
- Explore emerging debates within academic research, the media, policy and practice in relation to childhood and youth
- Critically evaluate the research and theoretical implications of debates related to childhood and youth
- Explore how researchers and academics might respond to conflicting understandings of childhood and youth
- Support students in constructing their own position in relation to key debates in the study of childhood and youth

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students should be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the complex concepts, paradigms, and practices which underpin contemporary debates surrounding childhood, youth, family and its contexts;
- Demonstrate a critical engagement with complex concepts, principles and values which underpin critical debates related to research into childhood and youth;
- Demonstrate an ability to select and justify appropriate techniques of enquiry and analysis in relation to the study of childhood, youth and family;
- Demonstrate an advanced ability to develop and sustain a research informed argument;
- Evaluate particular aspects of contemporary research and scholarship in the study of childhood, youth and family drawing from a range of interdisciplinary sources;
- Appreciate and explain the uncertainty, ambiguity and limitations of current concepts, principles and values relating to childhood, youth and family and its contexts.


Due to the contemporary focus of the module the syllabus will be updated regularly but may include issues such as:

Critical debates in theoretical approaches to childhood
e.g. post-structural approaches to childhood; critical pedagogy; childhood as relational.

Critical debates in children and the media
e.g. children's use of media, children as media producers, representations of childhood, online/offline worlds, censorship, pornography and violence, children and celebrity; moral panic and youth culture.

Critical debates in education
e.g. indigenous education and knowledge; perspectives from the Global South; international policy and practice in education; debates in Early Childhood Education and Care.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours176.00
Total Contact hours24.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Students will be required to conduct considerable ongoing private study and reading prior to lectures. THe lecturers expect the students to have read the set readings before lectures and lectures will serve to deepen and reinforce learning from these core readings.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress will be monitored via their online engagement with discussion forums and via their contribution to seminar discussions.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Assignment2500 words62.50
Assignment1500 words37.50
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 29/04/2024 16:13:19


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