Children's Literature (Distance Learning)

Postgraduate Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences

It all starts here. This unique course allows you to study children's literature in an online, flexible and part-time format from wherever you are in the world.

Children's Literature (Distance Learning)

2 years (part-time)

Number of Credits

MA: 180
PGDip: 120

Start date

September 2024

Degree Type




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Gain the expertise you need to standout in today’s literary world.  

On our MA Children's Literature (Distance Learning) our priority is exploring the exciting and varied world of children's literature, and examining how texts aimed at young people convey and challenge ideas about childhood. You will:

  • Start to think about children’s literature in new ways.
  • Be introduced to essential critical approaches, from postcolonial theory, psychoanalysis, and reader-response criticism, to new ideas about the child, power and ethics.
  • Study a selection of fairy tales, picture books and short stories, including classics, contemporary and innovative texts.

Through this programme you will become a member of the National Centre for Research in Children's Literature (NCRCL), regarded as the premier institution for children's literature research in Britain. The NCRCL has close links with organisations that work to further the study and teaching of children's literature, including The International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), Seven Stories (The National Centre for Children's Books), and Booktrust. The University is also the exclusive Creative Partner of Barnes Children's Literature Festival, London’s largest event dedicated to children's writing. You can stay up-to-date with the NCRCL by following their blog.

How you'll learn

Choose a course that fits around your life.

As a distance learner you will have:

  • support from the Department
  • regular contact with your tutors
  • access to specialist services
  • use of a wide range of e-books and digitised items from the Children's Literature Collection at the University Library which contains 3,000 critical, theoretical, bibliographical and reference works and approximately 40 specialist children's literature journals


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The programme is taught through a mixture of independent study, tutor feedback, and peer support. You will have access to an online learning environment, allowing you to work with digital materials, watch video lectures, and engage in learning activities.

You will have the chance to discuss ideas with other students through discussion boards and interact with your tutor in online seminars. At the end of each module, you will complete a piece of coursework, usually an essay, to demonstrate your understanding of the subject.

Career options

With your degree, you'll be ready for new and exciting adventures.

Graduates of MA Children's typically pursue careers in:

  • teaching
  • writing
  • children's publishing
  • librarianship
  • arts management

Additionally, a Creative Writing Pathway has been designed for those with an ambition to write for children, allowing you to study writing from a practitioner's perspective. 

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Our careers team is available to support you from the start of your studies until after you graduate. We will help you build your CV, prepare for interviews, and meet and learn from successful graduates working at the top of their careers.

Application Info

How to apply

Postgraduate programmes

If you need any help or advice with your application, or just want to ask us a question before you apply, please do not hesitate to contact us.

International students
Please note that most international applicants have to pay a deposit before securing their place.

  • See our Finance pages for more details

Tuition fees and funding

Total course fees for this part-time course are as follows. These are your fees for the entire duration of the programme. Part-time students will be given the opportunity to pay per module taken in each year of study. Payment will be aligned to the delivery pattern for your chosen programme.

September 2023 / January 2024 entry tuition fees

UK EU and International
£7,850 £15,000
  • Course fees for 2023 entry for home students are £436 per 10 credits
  • Course fees for 2023 entry for international students are £834 per 10 credits


September 2024 entry tuition fees

UK EU and International
£8,243 £15,750

Specific Entry Requirements

A good second-class honours degree in English Literature, or a combined honours of English Literature plus another subject. If you have a degree in another discipline, please provide evidence of literary studies in your transcript or personal statement.

Need help before you apply?

Our Research

Our creative writing and literature work is rooted in practice-based research and we innovate through form (e.g. music and translation) and through attention to gender, sexuality, identity and faith. In addition to Children's Literature we host innovative MAs in creative writing and in publishing and we are home to our inhouse publishing house, Fincham Press.

Read about some of the published research from academics within our department here.