SOCI6020 - Sociology: a child in context

Title:Sociology: a child in context
Long Title:Sociology: a child in context
Module Code:SOCI6020
Duration:1 Semester
Credits: 5
NFQ Level:Fundamental
Field of Study: Sociology
Valid From: Semester 1 - 2022/23 ( September 2022 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Coordinator: Cian ONeill
Module Author: Catherine Molyneaux
Module Description: This module aims to introduce students to the discipline of sociology and sociological perspectives in the Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) sector. Students will begin to explore how the development of a sociological approach can inform across a wide range of disciplines. The fundamental methods of sociology will be explored and aspects of Irish society will be examined from a sociological perspective; putting childhoods in context & understanding ECEC settings.
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to:
LO1 Examine the process of thinking sociologically with reference to a sociological theorist/theorists encountered in this module
LO2 Demonstrate knowledge of children’s places and spaces addressing aspects of children’s lives such as rights including play, philosophy, and social capital
LO3 Identify content from this module that helps you to think about the needs of parents and how they might be addressed by ‘First 5'
LO4 Explain the concept of childhood as a social construction.
LO5 Discuss how Philosophy for Children (P4C) approaches might develop children’s thinking about the dynamics of social inequality
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations

This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is strongly recommended before enrolment in this module. You may enrol in this module if you have not acquired the recommended learning but you will have considerable difficulty in passing (i.e. achieving the learning outcomes of) the module. While the prior learning is expressed as named MTU module(s) it also allows for learning (in another module or modules) which is equivalent to the learning specified in the named module(s).

Incompatible Modules
These are modules which have learning outcomes that are too similar to the learning outcomes of this module. You may not earn additional credit for the same learning and therefore you may not enrol in this module if you have successfully completed any modules in the incompatible list.
No incompatible modules listed
Co-requisite Modules
No Co-requisite modules listed

This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is mandatory before enrolment in this module is allowed. You may not enrol on this module if you have not acquired the learning specified in this section.

No requirements listed

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Sociology Theory and Thinking
Thinking sociologically - the sociological imagination. What is a sociological approach? Introducing sociological theory for childhood studies and to support the enrichment of children's lives. How does sociology 'sit' and interact with other modules in the programme. What is inter/multi-disciplinarity? How can thinking sociologically benefit you as a professional in the service of children.
Social Construction of Childhood
The social construction of childhood in time and place. Rights, participation, protection, risk and the new sociology of childhood. Postman and the disappearance of childhood? Hanson on children as been, being, becoming (and belonging). Conceptualising childhood and childhoods. History of ECEC in Ireland.
Strategies for Inclusion
Power, Priviledge, Stigma, Risk, ACE's, Outcomes, Social Policy, Social Research. Strategies for inclusion. Partnership with parents/guardians.
Culture and Social Stratification
What is culture? What is identity? The socialisation process. Disadvantage and inequality. Enabling children as philosophers.
Policies and Frameworks
Including First 5, Nurturing Skills, Professional Award Criteria and Guidelines, Aistear and Siolta and other relevant policies in class content and conversations.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work100.00%
Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Other Continuous Assessment. – View and discuss sociological material/documentaries and discuss the contribution of sociology to our understanding of society and children’s lives. 1,2 50.0 Week 8
Open-book Examination Open Book Assessment 3,4,5 50.0 Week 13
No End of Module Formal Examination
Reassessment Requirement
Coursework Only
This module is reassessed solely on the basis of re-submitted coursework. There is no repeat written examination.

The institute reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture Class lecture 3.0 Every Week 3.00
Independent & Directed Learning (Non-contact) Reflective study 4.0 Every Week 4.00
Total Hours 7.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 7.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 3.00
Workload: Part Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture Class lecture 3.0 Every Week 3.00
Independent Learning Reflective study 4.0 Every Week 4.00
Total Hours 7.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 7.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 3.00

Module Resources

Recommended Book Resources
  • Gaut, B. & Gaut, M. 2011, Philosophy for Young Children: A Practical Guide, 1st Ed., Routledge [ISBN: 9780415619745]
  • Giddens, A. & Sutton, P. W 2021, Sociology, 9th Ed., Polity Press Cambridge [ISBN: 1509539220]
  • Leonard, M. 2016, The Sociology of Children, Childhood and Generation, Sage Publications London [ISBN: 9781446259245]
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Gray, J., Geraghty, R. and Ralph, D. 2016, Family rhythms: The changing textures of family life in Ireland, Manchester University Press [ISBN: 9780719091513]
  • Matthewman, S et al. 2021, Being Sociological, 3rd Ed., Blooomsbury [ISBN: 1352011158]
  • McCormack, M, Anderson, E., Jamie, K, David, M. 2021, Discovering Sociology, 2nd Ed., Bloomsbury [ISBN: 9781352011449]
  • Smith, C. and Greene, S. 2015, Key Thinkers in Childhood Studies, Policy Press [ISBN: 978144730806]
Recommended Article/Paper Resources
Supplementary Article/Paper Resources
  • Department of Children & Youth Affairs 2016, Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Charter and Guidelines for Early Childhood Care & Education, DCYA, 06/2016, 104
  • Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth 2021, Nurturing Skills: The Workforce Plan for Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School-Age Childcare (SAC), 2022-2028
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
CR_HECEC_7 Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and Care 2 Mandatory