M.Sc. Child Studies

  • Blended
  • 12 months
  • EUR10066 per Year (International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

    Free (EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

  • English ( Take IELTS test or Find a course )
| Linköping, Sweden
The interdisciplinary master’s programme in Child Studies at Linköping University provides the opportunity to study children and the varying social, cultural and material conditions of their childhoods.


In a globalised world where most countries have ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, it is necessary to understand and analyse how the meanings of childhood and youth have shifted over time and space, and how they influenced the conditions for children. The master’s programme in Child Studies is an online distance learning programme with shorter campus-based periods at Linköping University and is dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of children and childhood.

Within the frame of the programme you will study cultural, social and political conditions of children and the transformation of childhood. These include children’s everyday life and political and cultural contexts. There is a focus on real life issues that matter in applied contexts.

The programme challenges conventional views on children and childhood by applying a child perspective. An important point of departure for this programme is that children are regarded as actors and the focus lies on children’s perspectives on matters that affect them. Skills aiming to strengthen children’s roles as actors receive much attention. Students will learn to critically scrutinise, analyse and discuss political, cultural and scientific statements and assertions about children and childhood.

Child Studies is a full-time study programme that has one year and two-year options. During the first semester students will be introduced to the interdisciplinary field of Child Studies with a special focus on historical, anthropological and sociological perspectives. These areas of knowledge are later studied more in depth, in relation to specific research problems such as:

  • the rights of children
  • children, parenthood and family life
  • children’s health and development in a global world
  • children, school and education
  • children, migration and transnational childhoods
  • children, gender and sexuality

The aim of the programme is to stimulate independent, critical and reflective ways of thinking on a wide range of questions that are associated with children and childhood. Both the one year and the two-year options include conducting an independent study and writing a thesis. The programme thereby provides theoretical and methodological tools to participate in, scrutinise, develop and improve activities and organisations affecting children and their living conditions.

Online instruction takes place with the aid of a digital learning platform which allows for a certain amount of flexibility as to where and when students conduct their studies. During the campus periods – three on the first year and two on the second year – students will have the opportunity to meet fellow students and network with researchers. The sessions on campus are important part of the programme and are mandatory.

Students who wish to complete only one year of the programme will receive a Master’s Degree in Child Studies (60 credits) after having successfully completed all courses of the first and second semesters. Students who complete successfully all four of the programme’s semesters are entitled to apply for a Master’s Degree in Child Studies (120 credits). Both years end with a 15 credits thesis course.

Career opportunities

Student of the master’s programme in Child Studies will be prepared for a career within governmental authorities and companies as well as local organisations, both governmental and non-governmental, whose activities affect children and their living conditions.

The programme prepares professionals in the fields of, for example, education, politics, social work and care, who are equipped with cutting-edge knowledge in issues dealing with children and their living conditions. Graduates can also follow a career in research or continue their studies towards doctoral degree.

Detailed Course Facts

Start dates and application deadlines

Started in

    Deadline was:
  • ( General

    General deadline, applies to everyone.


Dates reflect the university's timezone.

Tuition fee
  • EUR10066 per year ( International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

  • Free ( EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

  • Citizens from within the EU/EEA and Switzerland: No tuition fees
  • All others: SEK 95,000 per academic year
Credits (ECTS) 60 ECTS
Duration full-time 12 months
Delivery mode Blended
Educational variant Part-time, Full-time
Intensity Flexible
Duration part-time 24 months
Structure Fully structured
Student interaction Online group works/assignments
Attendance Regular mandatory meetings
Teacher support Continuous support with feedback on request

Course Content

Semester 1
  • Introduction to Child Studies
  • Historical Perspectives on Children and Childhood
  • Anthropological Perspectives on Children and Childhood
  • Sociological Perspectives on Children and Childhood
Semester 2
  • Research Methods in Child Studies
  • Children´s Rights
  • Master’s Thesis (one year)
Semester 3
  • Children, Parenthood, and Family Life
  • Children, School and Education
  • Children, Migration and Transnational Childhoods
  • Children, Gender, and Sexuality
Semester 4
  • Research Methods and Epistemology in Child Studies
  • Children’s Health and Development in a Global World
  • Master’s Thesis (two year)


Programme specific requirements

A bachelor’s degree in the humanities, social sciences or behavioral sciences with a major (or its equivalent) in a field relevant to the programme, e.g. anthropology, communication studies, education, history, language studies, media studies, political science, psychology, social work and sociology.

Each applicant must enclose a letter of intent written in English, explaining why they want to study this programme, and a summary of their bachelor's essay or project. If applicants hold a degree that does not include a bachelor's essay or project, then their letter of intent should describe previous studies and any other academic activities related to the master's programme.

All supporting documents, including the letter of intent and the specific paper, should be submitted to University Admissions in Sweden.

International students should consider taking a Pre-Master to gain access to universities in Sweden when:

  • You are considered ineligible for admission
  • You need to improve your academic, study, research or language skills
Search all Pre-Masters

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

More Information


Linköping University is a research-based university with excellence in education.

LiU, as we often call it, is a multi-faculty university where research and education are equally important. Since the start in the late 60’s, Linköping University has been an innovator, creating new study programmes and new ways to tackle research problems. Innovation has become our tradition.

Furthermore, we have always had strong dialogue with the surrounding business sphere and the community at large, both in terms of research and education. What LiU creates should be of benefit to the public. Together we can build a better, more sustainable world.

The LiU campuses are situated in Linköping and Norrköping in the East of Sweden. The university is an important driving force for regional development. However, the mission is greater—Linköping University is a national and international player. World-class research is conducted within cuttingedge domains such as new materials, IT and disability research. Students come from all across the globe, with over 80 nationalities represented at LiU. Many LiU students study abroad for a semester or a year. The international perspective is essential when working to expand reality.

Together we move the boundaries for what is possible. Together we can be bolder, go further and reach higher.

Reinventing higher education. Being innovative and offering knowledge truly in demand has been the guiding-star of LiU ever since the start in the late 60's. We offer more professional education programmes than any other Swedish university. Students from Linköping University are among those who first obtain jobs and have the highest income average one year after graduation.

Research making a difference. The openness between different subjects and faculties has contributed to the creation of strong research environments at Linköping University. World-leading research is carried out within several areas such as materials science, bioelectronics and migration, economy and society.

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Linköping University

Linköping, Sweden

Sweden Linköping University (LiU) is one of Sweden’s larger academic institutions and among those that offer the largest number of professional degree programmes, in fields such as medicine, education, business, economics and engineering. Research is conducted within a variety of disciplines, with strong internationally recognised research environments, e.g. materials science, information technology and disability studies.