MA Professional Studies in Children's Play
There's more to children's play than meets the eye and
we can show you why.
If you are working in or with the field of children's play, our
programme can help you articulate the unique nature of children's
play and its relevance to the current social policy agenda.
Our MA in Professional Studies in Children's Play is an academic
programme that has been developed in conjunction with practitioners
and professionals from a range of sectors. The programme aims to
meet the needs of professionals including playworkers, early year's
workers, educators, landscape designers, planners, environmental
educators, health professionals and animateurs in a variety of
contexts; museums, zoos, tourism, public space. The programme
places an understanding of the nature and benefits of play for its
own sake at the centre of study rather than seeing play as an
instrument to achieve other purposes.
The overall aim of the programme is to provide students with the
opportunity for both work-based and desk-based active
learning and research in order to develop a critical appreciation
of the role of adults in providing for, and supporting children's
Find out more at http://www.glos.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/psc
What is the content of the
The programme is made up of a number of modules and each is
worth a set number of CAT points. Students completing 60 CATS are
awarded the Postgraduate Certificate, 120 CATS the Postgraduate
Diploma and 180 CATS, including independent Project (Dissertation),
the full Masters.
Perspectives on Play (15 CATS)
This module focuses on understandings of play and the ways in
which this phenomenon has been defined
and valued from minority and majority world perspectives. The
intention of the module is to broaden and deepen understanding to
enable practitioners to better articulate and advocate for the
importance of children's play, and to consider how this increased
understanding has an impact on their professional role.
Play and Space (15 CATS)
This module develops a critical appreciation of the relationship
between play and space. Drawing on contemporary concepts from
philosophy, biology, psychology, human geography and the social
studies of childhood the module examines the production of space
through the complex and dynamic encounters and interplay between
human and non-human materials and symbols.
Perspectives on Playwork (15 CATS)
This module is designed to be relevant for practising
playworkers or those supporting, training or managing playworkers.
It builds on the 'Perspectives on Play' module to consider how this
might be critically applied to playwork practice, drawing largely
(but not exclusively) on the UK historical and theoretical
foundations for playwork as a specific approach to working with
children at play. The approach in the module encourages critical
comparison of the diverse practices of the student group.
Strategic Leadership and Management (15 CATS)
This module introduces key themes associated with management and
leadership in a variety of contexts. It offers the opportunity to
explore critically the inherent tensions between traditional
management approaches and the effective support for practice in an
uncertain landscpae, and appraise alternative perspectives that
offer the potential to align management and organisational
Applied and Contemporary Practice (15 or 30 CATS)
This module provides students with the opportunity to undertake
a practice based programme of study, which addresses the
educational objectives of their course. Students may work
individually or in a group with other students. The programme of
study will be
based in a relevant occupational or applied setting and will
incorporate current discipline practice.
Advocacy in Professional Practice (30 CATS)
This multidisciplinary module aims to provide a forum for
students to undertake a critical exploration of the key facets of
the policy process that underpin practice in the sport,
physical activity, play and cultural sectors. Consideration
is given to how policy and practice are informed by both
sector-specific and broader strategic drivers. Through a critical
analysis of policy materials students will be encouraged to examine
the discourses shaping their work environment.
Evidence Based Practice (30 CATS)
This multidisciplinary module aims to develop a critical
appreciation of evidence-based practice within physical activity,
sport, play and leisure contexts. In doing so, the module examines
critcally the philosophy and theory underpinning the concept of
evidence in these contexts, and explores its relationship to policy
and practice. A number of course-specific workshops will allow
students to apply specific analytical skills pertinent to
investigative and exploratory conventions in their area of
Research Methods (15 CATS)
The module provides students with an opportunity to reflect
critically on the methods and purposes of their subject and/or
practice, within the broad context of enquiry, including training
in specific methods and/or techniques as preparation for research
or professional practice.
Independent Project (Dissertation) (60 CATS)
The Independent Project is the single largest piece of assessed
work undertaken by the student and is designed to further develop
the knowledge and skills acquired throughout
the course. The Independent Project provides students with an
opportunity to conduct a sustained, intensive and independent
investigation into an area of study and to present their findings
in a formal manner in accordance with academic conventions and the
requirements of the subject.
- a course which helps develop a critical appreciation of the
importance of play in
the lives of children
- a course that draws upon a diverse range of academic
disciplines and historical
and contemporary research
- a course which helps develop a critical appreciation of
contemporary issues in providing
Applicants will need a good honours degree or show capacity to
study at Masters level. You will need to have an up-to-date CRB/DBS
check (or equivalent), available through the University, and access
to an environment to observe play for some modules.
Start date: September 2013
Mode of attendance: Part time distance learning with
occasional study days.
Fees Sep 2013 start