Research Methods and Epistemology in Child Studies, 7.5 credits

Forskningsmetoder och epistemologi i barn- och barndomsstudier, 7.5 hp


Main field of study

Child Studies

Course level

Second cycle

Course type

Single subject and programme course


Anette Wickström

Course coordinator

Anette Wickström

Director of studies or equivalent

Judith Lind
ECV = Elective / Compulsory / Voluntary
Course offered for Semester Weeks Language Campus ECV
F7MCH Child Studies, Master´s Programme 4 (Spring 2024) 202404-202408 English Linköping C

Main field of study

Child Studies

Course level

Second cycle

Advancement level


Course offered for

  • Master´s Programme in Child Studies

Entry requirements

  • Bachelor's degree equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen within the humanities, social sciences or the behavioral sciences with a major relevant to the programme. 
    Examples of fields:
    - anthropology
    - education
    - history
    - communication studies
    - media studies
    - language studies
    - psychology
    - social work
    - sociology
    - political sicence
    or equivalent
  • English corresponding to the level of English in Swedish upper secondary education (English 6/B)
    (Exemption from Swedish)
  • Passed at least 75 ECTS credits from the master´s program in Child studies (F7MCH), 15 of which must be the master’s thesis in term two

Intended learning outcomes

After completion of the course, the student should on an advanced level be able to:

  • identify, describe and critically discuss various epistemological, theoretical and methodological perspectives in Child Studies; and account for their potentials and limitations.
  • independently and in a well-informed way identify and formulate a research problem that is relevant to Child Studies 
  • produce a research plan that describes how the study may be completed within a given time frame, using adequate methods and epistemological perspectives and;
  • account for and critically evaluate research plans orally and in writing. 


Course content

The course deals with different epistemological foundations in Child Studies. It demonstrates the significance of epistemology for the choice of methods both for collection of data and their analysis. The course furthermore studies the relationship between research questions, research methods and theoretical and epistemological positions. One part of the course involves the independent and well-informed identification and formulation of a research problem relevant to Child Studies, as well as the writing of a research plan that describes how the problem may be studied within a given time frame using adequate methods and epistemological perspectives.

Teaching and working methods

The teaching in this course is carried out online and consists of lectures, seminars and group work. In addition, the student will engage in independent studies.

Language of instruction and examination: English.


The examinations consist of:

  • Active participation in seminar, grading scale: Fail/Pass
  • Written assignment, grading scale: EC

A passing grade (E) in the course requires grade E in the written assignment as well as a passing grade in all other examinations in the course. Higher grades are based on the written assignment.

Detailed information on the examinations can be found in the study guide.

If special circumstances prevail, and if it is possible with consideration of the nature of the compulsory component, the examiner may decide to replace the compulsory component with another equivalent component.

If the LiU coordinator for students with disabilities has granted a student the right to an adapted examination for a written examination in an examination hall, the student has the right to it.

If the coordinator has recommended for the student an adapted examination or alternative form of examination, the examiner may grant this if the examiner assesses that it is possible, based on consideration of the course objectives.

An examiner may also decide that an adapted examination or alternative form of examination if the examiner assessed that special circumstances prevail, and the examiner assesses that it is possible while maintaining the objectives of the course.

Students failing an exam covering either the entire course or part of the course twice are entitled to have a new examiner appointed for the reexamination.

Students who have passed an examination may not retake it in order to improve their grades.



Other information

Planning and implementation of a course must take its starting point in the wording of the syllabus. The course evaluation included in each course must therefore take up the question how well the course agrees with the syllabus. 

The course is conducted in such a way that there are equal opportunities with regard to sex, transgender identity or expression, ethnicity, religion or other belief, disability, sexual orientation and age.

If special circumstances prevail, the vice-chancellor may in a special decision specify the preconditions for temporary deviations from this course syllabus, and delegate the right to take such decisions.


Institutionen för Tema
Code Name Scope Grading scale
EXA4 Essay: Written individual assignment 6 credits EC
EXA2 Seminar: Opposition and discussion of research plans 1.5 credits U, G


Reading list with compulsory literature can be found under the tab “Additional documents”. A complete Reading list including reference literature will be available in LISAM (LiU:s e-learning platform) at the start of the course.

This tab contains public material from the course room in Lisam. The information published here is not legally binding, such material can be found under the other tabs on this page.

There are no files available for this course.