Children's Studies

Do you love children? Are you concerned with children's rights, education and child development issues here in Canada and around the world? Majoring in Children's Studies will expose you to the different realities of children and childhood across history and different cultures. You will explore in-depth issues facing researchers and students of this "rights-based and child-centered" academic discipline. Such study can lead you directly to a career once outside of the classroom or can be used as an excellent stepping stone for further study in a vast selection of fields in both the humanities and the sciences.

This list is not exhaustive but it provides a solid idea of what fellow graduates have gone on to do and what potential careers a Children's Studies degree can offer. Some options are more directly associated with specific areas of Children's Studies than others.

  • Alternative Communication Specialist
  • Assistive Living Worker
  • Author
  • Autism Specialist
  • Brain Researcher
  • Child Care Program Coordinator
  • Child Counselor
  • Child Development Specialist
  • Child Health Specialist
  • Child Psychologist
  • Child Welfare Worker
  • Child & Youth Worker
  • Children's Rights Activist
  • Communication Specialist
  • Day Care Worker
  • Disabilities Advocate
  • Editor
  • Family Counsellor
  • Fundraising Coordinator
  • International Development Educator
  • Journalist
  • Lawyer
  • Legal Aid Worker
  • Media Correspondent
  • Non-Profit Administrator
  • Pediatrician
  • Professor
  • Public Policy Analyst
  • Rehabilitation Counsellor
  • Researcher
  • Social Worker
  • Special Needs Educator
  • Teacher
  • Professor/Teacher

Some of these career choices may require additional education or preparation in the form of graduate studies, experiential education or professional formative courses and exams. For a more in-depth description of some of the careers mentioned above visit Career Cruising (login information can be found on the home page of the Career Centre's online system) or the National Occupational Classification website.

Skills Developed through a Children's Studies

A background in Children's Studies ensures that you develop the skills and mindset to tackle many different professional challenges.

Core Skills

  • The ability to view the study of children and childhood from a humanities point of view
  • Knowledge of the various methodologies and research practices in this child-centered and rights-based field of study
  • A deeper appreciation and understanding of the complexities of the human condition from the perspective of children

Communication, Data Gathering and Organizational Skills

  • The ability to present your thoughts clearly and intelligently in written statements and written opinion pieces
  • The ability to learn new information and apply this to professional demands
  • The capacity to critically analyze problems, think creatively and make sound decisions while considering different sides of an argument
  • The ability to explain complex ideas clearly to others and to apply complex theoretical concepts to everyday practice and professional dilemmas
  • The skills to collect various types of information, assess them, analyze and incorporate potential linkages from different fields, put them into writing and efficiently convey your message and the goal of your work

Management and Teamwork

  • The ability to interpret and analyze information presented by peers and efficiently and constructively support or challenge their proposals, theories, ideas and reports in order to achieve a project's intended end result
  • The capacity to lead and interact with a variety of people with different approaches and personal and professional backgrounds
  • Skills enabling you to work effectively in group situations, partaking in decision-making, leading and contributing in various capacities to the ultimate success of the team and task
  • The capability to identify priorities and proper courses of action, to plan the execution of tasks and to determine and delegate responsibilities to group members to most effectively carry out projects

Professional Associations and Organizations

Knowing the industry and how to excel in it after receiving a degree are key elements of future success. University study sets up the building blocks you will need to develop and enhance your understanding and knowledge in your career. Being part of a professional organization or network and gaining further insight through training are excellent ways of increasing your knowledge of the field.