The Master in Early Childhood Education and Care is designed to address the need to improve competence in this field. The purpose is to strengthen the evidence-based knowledge about children in the relevant age group, about childhood in general, the early learning centre as an institution for learning and the staff as professional actors. During the study programme, students will learn to be critical of and apply evidence-based knowledge, with a view to leading and driving professional development in the field of early childhood education and care. The programme will teach students how to analyse and critically discuss how different understandings of play and learning can have implications for the choice of early learning practices. Interprofessional collaboration is a key part of early learning professionals’ social mandate, and in some of the courses the students will therefore be given opportunities to meet students from other professions.
Interdisciplinary research on early learning, children and childhood will form the scientific basis of the study programme. The emphasis is on research on the child’s various subject positions and on how early learning staff’s professional judgement impacts on the children’s daily life and relationships with peers and adults. The scientific basis also draws on research into children and childhood, and has an analytical focus on how childhood and children’s daily lives are anchored and constructed in a political, social, historical and cultural context.
The study programme consists of four mandatory courses: Childhood, socialisation and institution cultures; Play, learning and children’s sense-making; Diversity and life skills; and The learning environment in early childhood education centres. The programme also has a number of elective courses that students can choose from. On the basis of these courses, students will be required to write a master’s thesis worth 30 ECTS credits. Diversity and life skills builds on topics highlighted in the Childhood, socialisation and institution cultures course. The learning environment in early childhood education centres builds on topics from the Play, learning and children’s sense-making course. It is therefore recommended that students take the courses in this order.
|1. sem||PED423-1 Childhood, socialisation and institution cultures 15 sp||KF-405-1 Lek, læring og barns meningsskaping 15 sp|
|2. sem||PED519-1 Scientific Theory and Research Method. 15 sp||SV-421-1 Mangfold og livsmestring 15 sp|
|3. sem||PED534-1 Barnehagens læringsmiljø 15 sp||Valgemner|
|4. sem||PED536-1 Masteroppgave 30 sp|
On completion of the study programme, students should have achieved the following learning outcomes, with respect to knowledge, skills and general competence:
The study programme qualifies students for managerial positions in the field of early learning, primarily at unit, municipal, regional or central government level. Professional positions within administration, organisation and management in the voluntary sector, public and private organisations, and training and competence development activities that require competence in children and early learning. Evaluation, investigative and research work, and teaching, at upper secondary schools (such as in child and youth work education), colleges and universities.
Holders of the Master in Early Childhood Education and Care can apply to study for a PhD in pedagogy or in social sciences at the University of Agder.
Teacher Education Unit