Interventions in Childhood (Two Years), 120 credits
Interventions in Childhood (Two Years), 120 högskolepoäng
Programme Code: LAC21
Confirmed by: Dean 2020-11-16
Version: 1
Reg number: 20/094
Valid From: 2021-08-23
Education Cycle: Second-cycle level

Title of qualification

Degree of Master of Science (120 credits) with a major in Child Studies:
• specialisation in Disability Sciences, or
• specialisation in Health and Care Sciences, or
• specialisation in Special Education, or
• specialisation in Welfare and Social Sciences.

Programme overview

The International Master’s level program Interventions in Childhood offers a deepening interdisciplinary education in the field of interventions for children in need of support for their development and/or functioning in everyday life beyond what is provided to all children. Influences are observed at different levels, “from neurons to neighbourhoods”. A critical perspective focusing on the individual, the environment, and their interrelationship, is emphasized. The master’s program is grounded in an ecological perspective on child development, learning, and functioning. A bio-psycho-social model is used as a frame of reference and the connection between research and practice is stressed.

The program is designed to provide students with a solid background for postgraduate studies, and for leadership roles in early childhood education, school - systems, special education, early intervention/habilitation, child healthcare, or social services. It includes comprehensive interventions for children at risk for developing long-term health conditions and/or impairments because of a health condition and/or disability, or psychosocial circumstances and other environmental influences. The education considers everyday life situations of children in different settings, including the family, preschool/school, hospital, and community.

The program is held in English and open for both national and international students already holding a bachelor's degree within health and care sciences, behavioral science, social work, or educational sciences, including independent, theoretical based work, i.e. a thesis or the equivalent.

Scientific methods are practiced in order to help students develop a reflective scientific approach. The first-year thesis course covers a systematic literature review in the field of the student’s interest and specialisation. The aim is for this review to function as the basis for the second-year thesis course, which includes an empirical study. To develop the research plan, a reading course is offered during the third semester.

The first year of the program consists of three mandatory courses of 7.5 credits in addition to a one – year master thesis of 15 credits (in total 60 credits). During the third and fourth semester, six mandatory courses of 7,5 credits is required. Additionally, a two – year master thesis of 15 credits is required. All courses during the first year offered within the program are hold on fulltime, and on the second year they are held on half-pace. These courses are offered at Jönköping University or in collaboration with other universities.

Each course offered at Jönköping University has its own syllabus with specific prerequisites. The organization of the courses follows a logic progression. All courses offered within the program are taught in English.
One academic year (equivalent to 60 credits) consists of 40 study weeks, divided in two semesters. Each study week equals 1.5 credits and corresponds to 40 hours of study.


General aims

The overall goal of the master’s program is to provide a qualified education from an international perspective in the field of interventions to children in need of additional support due to health condition, disability, poverty, social disadvantage or other reasons. The education provides the students with insights related to several topics demonstrating patterns of factors in individuals and populations, which in different contexts will affect important living outcomes such as learning, health, welfare, social security, participation, engagement and involvement of children and youth. The students will also acquire a deep understanding of the connection between theory and practice. The generated knowledge is meant to contribute to the improvement of healthcare, improved health and well-being and good resource management in a global perspective.

Second cycle education (60-120 ECTS) should essentially build on the knowledge students acquire in first cycle education (0-60 ECTS) or corresponding knowledge. Second cycle education should involve a deepening of knowledge, skills and abilities relative to first cycle education; in addition to what applies to first cycle education, it should:

- further develop students’ ability to independently integrate and use knowledge
- develop students’ ability to deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations
- develop students’ potential for professional activities that demand considerable independence or for research and development work

Program-specific learning goals

More specifically, students are expected to acquire:

- understanding of the ecology of childhood intervention in an international perspective,

- theoretical deepened understanding about child development and intervention processes providing possibilities for critical examination and analysis of models for intervention and application of those,

- deepened understanding of major theories and current research related to intervention processes including a focus on the connection between theory and practice,

- deepened knowledge in system theory, and the abilities to relate it to children’s health, development, and learning in different environments,

- deepened knowledge about research methods, especially methods useful in the field of research in childhood.

In addition to the learning outcomes stated in the Higher Education Ordinance (SFS) No. 2006:1053, students should demonstrate the following:

Knowledge and Understanding to:

- demonstrate deepening knowledge and understanding in the field of childhood interventions, including both a broad overview of the field’s current research and development work, and essential specialised knowledge in intercultural and global perspectives
- demonstrate specialised methodological knowledge in the field of childhood interventions

Skills and Abilities to:

- identify and to critically and systematically integrate knowledge needed for interventions processes and expectations in an international perspective,

- integrate theories and methods within childhood interventions and to critically analyse, assess and deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations,

- identify and formulate research questions independently as well as to plan and, using appropriate methods, undertake advanced intervention tasks within predetermined time frames,

- demonstrate, in intercultural contexts, the ability to independently and clearly report, in speech and writing, his or her conclusions and to discuss those conclusions as well as the knowledge and arguments on which they are based in dialogue with different audiences,

- demonstrate the skills required for participation in research and development work or for work in other qualified capacities,

- produce written assignments with linguistic rigor and formality that consistently comply scientific methods of presentations.

Judgement and Approach to:

- demonstrate the ability to relate a professional action to the basic values of interventions inchildhood,

- planning research in childhood informed by relevant interdisciplinary, social and ethical issues and also to demonstrate awareness of ethical aspects of research and development work related to children and youth,

- demonstrate insight into the possibilities and limitations of research, its role in society and the responsibility of the individual for how it is used,

- identify the personal need for further knowledge and the ability to take responsibility for his or her ongoing learning.


The two – year master’s program (0 – 120 credits) is conducted on advanced level at full time studying.

It includes seminars and lectures on campus and streamed lectures offered by international professors. Students are given the opportunity to choose focus of examination tasks in each course, and in the master thesis based on their chosen specialization area.

The first year includes four core courses that are common for all students, and independent project (theses) within the student’s specialization:

Semester 1
Introduction to Interventions in Childhood, 15 credits
Theory of Science and Scientific Methods, 15 credits

Semester 2
One Year Master Thesis in Interventions in Childhood 15 credits
Developmental Sciences and Intervention Processes, 15 credits

Semester 3
Research strategies and design problems, 7.5 credits
Conducting research with and about children, 7.5 credits
Thesis planning for Two – year master’s degree Project in Child Studies, 7.5 credits
Foundation course in Disability Research, 7,5 credits

Semester 4
Two-year master Thesis in Child Studies – Empirical study, 15 credits
The ecology of inclusion, participation and children’s everyday functioning, 7,5 credits
Crisis Leadership in Social Work, 7,5 credits

Teaching and examination

The teaching is conducted with problem-based methods. The way of working is adapted to the character of each course and may include literature reviews, lectures, seminars, individual tasks, or group work.
The courses for the first year are provided in full-time and on the second year the courses are in half pace. As a digital e-learning system is used, access to computer is of importance and computer experience will facilitate the studies.
To pass a course, the student needs to fulfil all the course requirements. Examination is carried out by means of written exam, oral exam or term papers. Different methods of examination can be used within a single course. The student will be offered at least three opportunities to pass an exam. The university is not obligated to offer re-exams in courses a student has already passed.

All courses will be graded according to the ECTS system. A-E constitute passing grades while FX and F constitute failing grades.


The applicant must hold the minimum of a bachelor’s degree (i.e. the equivalent of 180 ECTS credits at an accredited university) with at least 90 credits within health and care sciences, behavioral science, social work, disability research, or educational sciences, including independent, theoretical based work, i.e. a thesis or the equivalent work that demonstrates that the applicant has conducted independent, systematic research and formally written about this research (e.g. participation in work based research; participation in research methods courses). Proof of English language proficiency is required.

Continuation Requirements

The following requirements need to be met:

For students to proceed to the second year (third semester) within the program: students must fulfil all courses during the first year and not fall behind more than 15 credits.

For students to proceed to the fourth semester within the program: students must fulfil all courses from the three previous semesters and not fall behind more than 15 credits.

Qualification Requirements

To obtain the Master of Science (120 credits) with a major in Child Studies, the student must complete the course requirements of at least 120 credits at the higher education level that were not used for the bachelor's degree, with at least 90 credits overall in second-cycle courses and at least 60 of those second-cycle credits in Child Studies, including a 30-credit master's thesis or two 15-credit master's theses in Child Studies.
Requirements to complete the programme are (1) completing the requirements for the Master of Science (120 credits) with a major in Child Studies and (2) completing all courses that are listed as mandatory courses in the Contents section, or their equivalent.
The degree certificate will be issued after formal application from student.

Quality Development

The program is evaluated at the end of the second semester as well as at the end of the fourth semester. The evaluation is carried out in collaboration between students and the program coordinator. Each course is also evaluated according to the regulations and guidelines for first, second and third cycle education at Jönköping University.

Other Information

The program aims for an equal share between Swedish and international students in order to obtain the best multicultural student environment possible. The program is given at the School of Education and Communication at Jönköping University. It collaborates with the research environment CHILD (Children-Health-Intervention-Learning-Development) at the School of Education and Communication and the School of Health Sciences and the Swedish Institute of Disability Research (SIDR). The program has a specific ambition to collaborate with strategic partner researchers in CHILD’s international network to broaden the multicultural perspectives.

Before attending to the programme applicants need to submit the provided pre - course preparation including professional orientation, personal preferences and goals and how they think the program will advance those goals.