The aim of the programme is to build on students’ interests and experiences related to children’s and young adult (YA) literature, media and culture in order to deepen their knowledge of the expanding intersection of the fields of literature studies, media studies, childhood studies and education within an international perspective. It will provide opportunities for students to consider how this understanding can be applied to different and (often rapidly) changing contexts of practice. CLMC will bring together scholars and practitioners who are motivated by the need to understand and improve the ways in which children interact with literature and other texts and who will provide a theoretical grounding in children’s literature that includes historical, literary, educational and media-related frameworks. The programme will also offer opportunities to students to acquire and develop practical skills for professional application, in Semester 3, through placements in libraries, archives, museums, the film industry, broadcasters, publishers and book/reading promotion organizations.
The aims of the programme are to
- Offer an integrated, international and coherent programme of study of the history, literary and media theory for children’s and YA literature as well as critical methodologies through which to evaluate and critique the corpus of the children’s and YA literature and media texts, including visual and digital formats, which form part of the culture of childhood.
- Examine the interaction between children, young adults and adults in the production and consumption of multimodal texts, promoting this interaction by combining culture and creativity and, through rigorous research, consider the challenges of integrating multiliteracy into diverse educational contexts and policies.
- Promote and develop profound cultural sensitivity, through the analysis of multicultural texts, media and artefacts (including cultural heritage) as well as through academic dialogue among the broad international cohort of students.
- Deepen students’ critical understanding of contested concepts, theories and debates about the promotion, role and users of literary, media and digital texts in professional and community contexts, including understanding the global market of books, media and related artefacts for children.
- Broaden perspectives on how texts and media for children reflect contested constructions of childhood and how they have the potential to raise critical awareness of social and cultural issues such as discrimination or social injustice and become vehicles for social change through addressing current global themes.
- Contribute to the development of intercultural communication, cooperation skills and active citizenship within a European and global framework, including a greater awareness of the European project and EU values.
Intended learning outcomes and skills
The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes designed to prepare them for future academic and/or professional careers.
Knowledge and understanding
On completion of the programme, students will be able to:
- Assess critically the ideas of leading children’s literature theorists and develop an awareness of enquiry methodologies and research literacies in order to apply their thinking and undertake their own enquiries in relation to textual analysis, empirical research and professional practice in the EU and globally;
- Analyse/evaluate current trends and developments across the range and diversity of contexts for promoting books, reading, film and literacy/media practices, as well as translation/multilingual learning in the EU and international contexts in order to contribute to planning, implementing, evaluating and forming policy around book/reading promotion and literacy projects and projects concerning children’s and young adult’s uses of media in Europe and globally;
- Expand values and attitudes towards texts intended for children and think critically about challenging issues regarding theory, policy and practice in the fields of children’s literature, culture and media, in ways that enable new and alternative approaches to these issues that draw on key employability skills developed through work placements;
- Consider theory and practice in different contexts in a way that increases responsiveness to social, linguistic and cultural diversity and use critical enquiry to demonstrate an understanding of and concern for the potential of children’s literature and media to address social and cultural issues impacting on 21st century life in a transnational perspective;
- Employ creative approaches to facilitate and enrich learning, aesthetic and cultural experiences, entertainment and ‘Bildung’, using a wide range of literature and media texts in traditional, digital and transmedial formats, that students are likely to encounter in their practice within different contexts in Europe and globally.
Skills and other attributes
Students will also develop skills that can be applied to other areas, and will be able to
- work independently as well as within an international team;
- collate and analyse information from a range of sources relevant to specific issue;
- prepare and conduct oral presentations effectively;
- write clear, accurate and insightful critical analytical texts, using references appropriately and consistently;
- debate issues verbally in international and cross-disciplinary tutorial situations and in seminars (often improving English speaking abilities);
- demonstrate competent IT skills (information retrieval, document preparation, communication via new media);
- demonstrate ability to conduct applied research (textual analysis, quantitative and qualitative methodologies) within a specific context;
- develop foreign language competencies including:
- gain awareness of a range of other languages through mobilities and also through fellow students
- increase awareness of the potential of the increasing production of multilingual children’s and young adult texts which can be used to teach language and to communicate in multilingual contexts, including indigenous minority languages
- obtain a basic level of literacy in at least one new language