Who is this course for:
This course is aimed at people who may already possess a recognised degree qualification and who wish to upgrade to a postgraduate qualification in a part-time, flexible manner. This will increase their opportunities to progress into broader professional roles (e.g. management, training, policy development, advocacy or research) and new, emerging roles (e.g. mentoring, leadership).
This course is delivered through the Centre for Adult Learning & Professional Development at NUI Galway with a strong affiliation to the UNESCO Child & Family Research Centre and the School of Political Science and Sociology at the University.
The course has been developed to reflect contemporary approaches and understandings of family life, childhood, play and pedagogical philosophies as they inform the early years sector.
Students will engage with advanced and critical theories, exploring evolving policy, social research, child protection, integrated working as well as professional leadership and practice. Cutting across all modules and underpinning the ethos of the course will be a children's rights perspective, facilitated through a strong reflective element, supporting students to analyse, critique and challenge dominant discourses, perceived values, as well as the on-going developments within the practice and policy environment.
On completion of this course, graduates will possess:
• An in-depth knowledge and understanding of contemporary theories in relation to early childhood.
• The ability to take a children's rights perspective across all content, in particular, on the issues of child protection, risk and vulnerability, safeguarding children; promoting wellbeing through practice, policy and research.
• The capacity to hold leadership positions within emerging and varied professions in the practice, policy, teaching and research areas of the early years care and education sector.
• The ability to critically reflect and evaluate professional practice, early years policy, and dominant discourses in academic literature and research.