EdD in Early Childhood Education
The Early Childhood Education (ECE) strand of the EdD programme at Sheffield is a popular named route and offers a unique opportunity to work alongside fellow colleagues (students and staff) who are specializing in this field of study. You will find more information and our areas of expertise on the staff profiles webpages.
The EdD is a Taught Programme with a programme duration of 4 – 8 years and mode of attendance part time.
The EdD ECE examines a variety of aspects of educational research and is for those who wish to research their practice in early childhood education in more depth, whether working in early years settings or offering other services for young children and their families. The course aims to provide students with both a thorough grounding in the philosophy, principles and practice of educational research, and provide a critical understanding of key contemporary issues in relation to early childhood education.
The course aims to enable students to:
In Part II of the EdD programme you will have the opportunity to pursue a study of direct relevance to your own research and practice interests. You will work closely with a supervisor to develop your initial proposal and to continue to develop your study and final thesis.
The main aim of the programme is to develop high standards of research that will be relevant to a range of professional and managerial careers.
The programme is designed to enable each student to focus on issues relating to her/ his own professional needs. In Part I, students undertake six modules. Three of these are focused on research training, in preparation for Part II. The other three modules all examine a variety of aspects of educational research. Students are encouraged to shape assignments to meet their own professional contexts.
In Part II, students undertake an independent study in an area of their choice.
Who is the EdD in Early Childhood Education for?
The EdD Early Childhood Education is designed to meet the needs of students from a wide range of professional backgrounds, including those working in early years settings and those involved in training related areas, both in the UK and overseas. Some students are in middle and senior level managerial positions in schools, colleges and universities, while others are in the early stages of their career. The course is for people who have a Masters degree and are committed to pursuing their career in parallel to their studies at doctoral level.
Where is the Programme Taught?
The venue for the weekend schools for the EdD programme is the luxurious Kenwood Hall in Nether Edge, Sheffield.
In Part I, students attend a weekend study school for each module i.e. three weekend study schools per year. Attendance at residential weekends is a compulsory part of the programme at Part I level. These weekends enable students to meet and develop their own networks and contacts.
Students are sent readings in electronic form prior to each weekend school. During the study school, students attend in lectures and seminars. Regular communication between students and supervisors is encouraged throughout Part II. In addition to attending supervision tutorials at weekend study schools students maintain contact at key points during their programme of study via e-mail, letter, telephone and personal visits.
This comprises six modules. They are normally studied in the following order:
Introduction to Education Research
An introduction to educational research, contemporary issues and debates in the field.
Contemporary Debates in Education
Draws on a range of research studies to explore topical educational issues, together with emerging patterns of educational provision for the future.
Processes of Educational Research
This module focuses on the research methodologies techniques and responsibilities of the researcher.
Approaches to Education Policy
Introduces students to the critical study of education policy, its formation and effects in relation to theory and practice. Education policy themes include: marketisation/privatisation, globalisation, professional identity and equality.
Named route module
Focuses on a variety of aspects of educational research related to the specific named route chosen by the student, in this case, Early Childhood Education.
Research Design and Management
Looks at practical issues involved in all stages of the research process, which includes those undertaken in Part II of the EdD programme.
Part II: Thesis
An extensive research project of between 50,000 and 60,000 words. more information can be found under 'Assessment'.
Students complete an assignment at the end of each module in Part 1. Students are encouraged to shape assignments to meet their own professional contexts. Every student is assigned a personal tutor for the duration of each module. Assignments are 6,000 words in length and students can expect to receive feedback on a plan and a complete draft of their assignment.
In Part 2 students conduct an extensive research project on an approved topic, resulting in a thesis of between 50,000 and 60,000 words. It is examined through a viva examination to ensure the highest research standards. The Part 2 research thesis is conducted under the supervision of a member of staff. Regular communication between students and supervisors is encouraged throughout Part 2. In addition to attending supervision tutorials at weekend study schools, students maintain contact at key points during their programme of study via e-mail, Skype and/or telephone.
Recent thesis titles include:
Chris Jarvis (2012) ‘Using Pupil Voice to Inform Cross-Curricular Language Lessons in a Specialised Foreign Language Secondary School’