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MA Youth & Community Practice - Research and Leadership

Develop your own practice as a youth or community worker as you chart your course to leadership roles in the field.


Flexible delivery enables study whilst working


Entry requirements

A relevant degree and practice experience are required.

International students will be expected to meet the English language requirements of IELTS 6.0 or equivalent.


UCAS code Apply direct to Marjon

Duration One year full-time or two years part-time

Course Summary

This exciting MA provides the perfect learning platform for experienced and qualified youth and community work practitioners to develop expertise in their chosen area. You will be encouraged to critically analyse historical and contemporary evidence and theory to develop a sophisticated understanding of contemporary youth & community work practice and to actively develop new and innovative forms of practice. The programme offers a rich and culturally diverse teaching and learning environment informed by, and contributing to, international, national, and local perspective of youth and community work. You will undertake two projects where you will be able to develop and apply specialist knowledge in practice.

The teaching is delivered in four blocks, supported by e-learning. You will critically engage with the tensions and challenges of current practice, develop an enhanced knowledge of effective leadership approaches, critically evaluate responses to the changing policy context and develop enhanced skills in practitioner research. You will develop expertise in your chosen area through research in practice. Throughout, you will be encouraged to reflect on your role as a practitioner and question and critically evaluate your professional role.  You will develop the skills and knowledge needed to work alongside people in communities to initiate sustainable social change.

Why this course at Marjon?

Our teaching team are at the forefront of research in youth and community practice.

Explore youth and community practice from both British and International perspectives.

Specifically designed to support CPD for those qualified and experienced practitioners.

Research focus enabling the development of expertise enhancing employability.

Flexible delivery enabling study and work to be combined .

Collaborative learning environment with Master Classes from British and International practitioners and academics.

This course is perfect if you're curious about

Is youth and community practice fit for purpose in the 21st century?

Is the outcomes agenda the death knell for youth and community practice?

Should youth and community practice be state-governed or community-driven?

Is participatory practice a thing of the past?

Has the individualisation agenda destroyed any hope of associational practice?

What forms of youth and community work practice can support social justice in today’s context?

What might you become?

The MA Youth & Community Practice - Research & Leadership offers an in-depth look at the profession in its current state, encouraging you to identify new strategies which can bring about change in the future.

This MA is the pathway to exciting, meaningful, and challenging professional development for professional youth and community workers and enhances employability through the development of expertise.


Modules for this course

Modules

1st Year

Theory & Practice
You’ll explore the origins and histories of youth & community work practice, the contested aims and purposes and the key theoretical approaches. You will develop a critical understanding of the ideological and political determinants that have shaped practice.
Leadership & Organisational Contexts
You’ll explore leadership in youth & community practice; examine the implications of managerialism, the implications of integrated working, the limits of leadership and the role of entrepreneurship and social enterprise. You’ll gain an enhanced appreciation of community management practices and develop creative and participatory practice for leading change.
Research in Practice
You’ll critically examine the key concepts associated with Practitioner Research; its purpose, the various approaches & methods and the role of values & reflexivity. You will develop a critical and contextual understanding of the inter-relationship between research and practice and an appreciation of how techniques of research are used to create and interpret knowledge in youth & community practice.
Professional Project
In this practice-based module you’ll explore approaches to critical enquiry in practice, and select, justify and conduct an independent investigation into an aspect relevant to your context. You’ll be encouraged to show innovation and creativity in your methodology. You will develop expertise in an area relevant to contemporary youth & community practice and the confidence to engage with academic and professional communities in the dissemination of outcomes.
Specialist Subject Study
In this independent study module you’ll engage in practitioner research to develop and extend professional youth work practice. You will develop an in-depth knowledge in a specific subject relevant to your context through critical enquiry. You’ll be encouraged to show innovation and creativity in your methodology. You’ll develop a n enhanced ability to articulate a critical appreciation of the key conceptual debates which inform your area of study and extend these.
Research Project
Supported by your supervisor, you’ll conduct a piece of original research using a practitioner research approach in in your chosen topic relevant to youth & community work practice. You will design, complete and present your research culminating with a presentation at the end of programme conference.

Fees and funding


Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

A combination of on-campus teaching (lectures / seminar work), twilight group tutorials (including virtual attendance for those at distance) and tutor-supported independent study. On campus teaching will be delivered via 4 weekend blocks (Fri day pm to Sunday lunchtime). 

How will you be assessed?

Via essays, presentations, project reports, self-assessment, dissertation and visual media such as posters and websites.

Course leader

Dr Susan Cooper

Sue is a youth work academic and author, specialising in participatory practice. She was youth and community worker for thirty years, working as youth worker in Norfolk, Birmingham and Gloucestershire and then and as a senior manager in Hampshire. Currently, her work on evaluating the impact of youth work is influencing youth work practice regionally and internationally (Scotland, France, Italy, Estonia, Finland and Western Australia). Her book ‘Participatory Evaluation in Youth and Community Work’ was published in 2017.

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Lecturers

Dr Jon Ord

Associate Professor

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Jon has worked for 20 years as a youth work practitioner and brings that knowledge and commitment to youth work to his teaching and research. He is particularly interested in the impact of policy on practice as well as the management of youth and community work and outdoor education. Jon is leading a major research project into the value and impact of Youth Work on the lives of young people in Europe.


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