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PGCert Education – Children's Literature


School of Education

Postgraduate Certificates

This three module course will provide you with an overview of the turbulent and unique journey that children's literature has taken since its earliest days to the present from a range of theoretical perspectives. You will acquire the understanding of how texts are constructed using a range of narrative modes and how this aspect of your subject knowledge can be employed in the primary classroom to develop children’s abilities to read a range of texts for pleasure. You will also explore a variety of texts currently available including classic texts; comics; novels in verse form; literature in translation and interactive texts.

Available start dates

September 2019 / September 2020

Teaching location

Harcourt Hill Campus / Distance learning

Course length

  • Part time: 12 months

For full application details, please see the 'How to apply / Entry requirements' section.

  • You will be taught by an experienced team of colleagues researching and teaching in the area of children's literature
  • You will explore a variety of texts currently available, including classic texts, comics, novels in verse form, literature in translation and interactive texts.
  • Your learning on the course may lead to better prospects for career advancement and alumni frequently their change role / direction as a result of developing new understandings and skills from their work on the course.
  • We have regular guest lecturers focussing on the four language modes (speaking, listening, reading and writing).
  • We also make full use of the Oxford Brookes specials collections, a new collection of rare and antiquarian children's books and host a session in the Oxford Story Museum.

The PG Certificate in Children’s Literature consists of three modules (60 credits) taken part time either on-campus or distance learning over one year.  The three modules are:

Reading for pleasure in the primary classroom
(Autumn semester)

In order to consider the place of reading for pleasure within the current curriculum, this module will develop your knowledge of children’s literature in relation to breadth and depth, with a focus on diversity, translation and equality. The module will enhance your skills in the critical reading of texts and explore the roles and responsibilities of those gatekeepers to children's literature. Alongside text analysis, we will discuss the reader and writer in the text and explore how drama can offer children empathetic steps into worlds beyond their reach. 

Children's literature through the ages
(Spring semester)

The profile of children's books has undergone an unparalleled change compared to other fields of literature. From its early days of didactic and moralistic undertones pre-18th century, to the present day where stories are not just written for pleasure but actively encourage children to question the ideologies that surround them, this genre's journey has been fascinating and, arguably, the most diverse. This module will begin with studying some of the early classics and end with children's stories in today's multimedia world. Through a range of theoretical perspectives such as feminism, marxism and post-modernism, this module will explore a range of texts including: classics, novels in verse, literature in translation, apps, traditional tales and comics.

Independent Study: investigating practice
(Summer semester)

This module provides you with an opportunity to engage in independent study/practice investigation of an approved topic relevant to the programme and is  conducted under supervision with the prior approval of the Module Leader and Subject Coordinator. The independent study/practice investigation may be based on primary and/or secondary data.

Please note: as our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules available may vary from those shown here.


Teaching and learning

The teaching and learning methods used on the programme are designed to promote constructive and critical reflection on practice and a range of theoretical and research issues.  

Lectures, seminars and workshops provide the format for the timetabled sessions but the modules are structured to ensure students have the opportunities to draw on the knowledge and experience of each other. 

We have regular guest lecturers focussing on the four language modes (speaking, listening, reading and writing). We also make full use of the Oxford Brookes specials collections, a new collection of rare and antiquarian children's books and host a session in the Oxford Story Museum.

Attendance pattern

The programme can be taken either on-campus or by distance learning. Teaching is organised on a module-credit basis, each module involving approximately 200 hours of student input and approximately 24 hours of staff input.

  • On-campus – taught modules Modules are usually taught over eight weeks on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays at 17:00 – 20:00.
  • Distance learning – the programme can be achieved by part-time online learning through the use of our Moodle platform. For each module this usually requires about 12 hours a week plus time spent on assessment.

Programme changes

On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.

Tuition fees

Home/EU - part time fee: 2019/20 £1860.00

Home/EU - cost per module: 2019/20: £620

International - part time fee: 2019/20: £1,500 per single module

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed in the 'This course in detail' window above.

Questions about fees?
Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Funding and scholarships

Entry requirements

Students should normally have a first degree.

English language requirements

Please see the university's standard English language requirements

English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the university's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

International applications

Preparation courses for International and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you to meet the entry requirements for this course and also familiarise you with university life. You may also be able to apply for one student visa to cover both courses.

  • Take our Pre-Master's course to help you to meet both the English language and academic entry requirements for your master's course.
  • If you need to improve your English language, we have pre-sessional English language courses available to help you to meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s.

If you are studying outside the UK, for more details about your specific country entry requirements, translated information, local contacts and programmes within your country, please have a look at our country pages.

How to apply

To apply for this course please complete the PG Cert Education: Children's Literature application form

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

How this course helps you develop

The PGCert aims to develop reflective practitioners at master's level. It should enable you to reflect and implement theory based strategies which will improve and enrich the reading experience within your own practice. 


Your learning on the course may lead to better prospects for career advancement and students frequently change role / direction as a result of developing new understandings and skills from their work on the course. 

How Brookes supports postgraduate students

Supporting your learning

From academic advisers and support co-ordinators to specialist subject librarians and other learning support staff, we want to ensure that you get the best out of your studies.

Research highlights

Sustained excellence in research and publication has ensured that a significant proportion of our School of Education staff were entered for the Research Excellence Framework (REF) in 2014 (UoA 25). Almost 90% of our research was deemed to be of international merit, with around one half either ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Contributions to the REF were spread across all of our research groups.


Our research aims to create impact on contemporary educational issues - supporting knowledge creation and developing innovative approaches to researching pedagogic practices. The School’s research strategy functions at all spatial scales, from local to global. We publish our highest quality research in leading peer-reviewed journals. Emeritus, Honorary and Visiting Research Fellows contribute to our research programmes and outputs.

The School holds two major research conferences each year - the School of Education Research Conference and the EdD Colloquium. Our Research Seminar Series (which attracts both internal and external speakers) runs annually - all students are invited to attend. We also organise a number of conferences, lectures, seminars and debates, some of which have an international reach.

Members of the School are engaged in a variety of funded and unfunded research projects; we have previously enjoyed prestigious funded scholarships (such as the Fulbright – Peabody scholarship) and, when feasible, offer funded Research Studentships to doctoral applicants. Our Centre for Educational Consultancy and Development (CECD) regularly secures consultancy and research money.

As might be expected in such a research active school, many staff are engaged as editors, editorial board members, or reviewers for various peer reviewed academic and professional journals, as well as online journals.

View all staff profiles for School of Education

Research areas and clusters

The School of Education at Oxford Brookes University is a thriving centre for educational research and teacher professional development. Students on master's level courses therefore join a large research community comprising researchers at all levels of higher education study.

The School’s six research groups reflect a thriving research community of academics, scholars and students. They exist to encourage engagement in research, publication, conference presentations, seminars and workshops. These groups focus on:

  • Inclusion and Wellbeing
  • Policy, Partnership and Leadership
  • STEAM pedagogy and learning
  • Humanistic Perspectives on Education
  • Early Years
  • Applied Linguistics.

Course downloads

  • PGCert Children's Literature brochure
  • Related courses

  • MA Education