981 Multicultural Preventative Care with Children and Adolescents, master


The curriculum for Telemark University College’s Master’s degree in Multicultural Preventative Care with Children and Adolescents was developed on the basis of the following documents:

  • The national curriculum for the Master’s programme in Multicultural Preventative Care approved by NOKUT, September, 2006.
  • The Norwegian Universities Act no. 15, 1st April 2005, including regulations.
  • Regulations for admission and ranking for further educational and higher degree studies at Telemark University College (adopted by the Board at Telemark University College with regard to the delegated authority from Ministry of Education and Research in a letter dated 11th March 1998).
  • Regulations for Examinations and Admission at Telemark University College approved 1st January 2006.
  • Telemark University College’s Quality Assurance Handbook approved by the board 28th June 2006.
  • Telemark University College’s Strategic Plan (2005-2009) approved by the board 24th February 2005.
  • Storting White Paper 39, 2001-2002, “Growing up and living conditions for children and young people in Norway”.
  • Storting White Paper 16, 2002-2003, “Prescription for a healthier Norway”.
  • Storting White Paper 49, 2003-2004, “Diversity and participation”.

The study programme curriculum is to be understood as the student’s contract with the teaching faculty. It includes information concerning the programme’s aims, content and organisation. The study programme also includes a description of the programme’s teaching and learning methods, and assessment methods. The various course and major course unit descriptions of the Master’s programme are a realisation of the study programme. The study programme has been approved by the Dean of the Health and Social Studies Department.

The relevance of the study programme

Increasing globalisation, individualisation and new forms of risks result in conditions in which children and youth grow up being subject to continual and rapid changes. Children and young people’s socialisation conditions have changed considerably due to new family patterns, the influence of the media, changing values and international migration patterns. Children and young people growing up today relate to various arenas such as family, kindergartens, school and leisure contexts. They orientate themselves in a society which is built on ambiguous and to some extent conflicting values that form the basis for social roles and identity management. Children and young people are also exposed to large amounts of information, a globalised youth culture, new sources of communication and information; and they meet people from various ethnic and cultural backgrounds.

Compared to the past, the conditions in which children and youth grow up today present them with many possibilities and choices, but also more demanding challenges. Material and social differences, gender, ethnicity and cultural background, are all variables which separately or in conjunction with one another may contribute to individuals and groups of children and young people experiencing difficulties in coping with the challenges they are confronted with.

In recent years, the World Health Organisation and the national authorities in Norway and in a number of other countries have focused particularly on vulnerable groups, and indicated the need to work to prevent health and social problems of children and young people and their families. An essential reason for this is that measures which are implemented during early life-phases may possibly have long-term effects and increase long-term quality of life for the individuals concerned. At the same time, this may also save social expenditure. It must also be emphasised that such measures must be based on research and knowledge.

A multicultural society offers new challenges for health and social workers. Amongst other things, the need for increased skills in preventative and health-promoting measures aimed at children and young people. This Master’s programme will contribute to promoting these skills and to developing new insight into cultural understanding, preventative and health promoting measures and growing-up conditions in modern society. Central areas in the study programme are multiculturalism and children and youth culture.

Target Group and Admission Requirements

Target group

The main target group for the Master’s degree programme are graduates with a minimum of a three-year Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent within the health and social professions, such as nursing, social education, child welfare and social work. Persons with other relevant backgrounds, for instance, general teachers and pre-school teachers, may also apply.

Admission requirements
The admission requirements for the study programme are a Bachelor’s degree within the areas of health and social care subjects, or other relevant areas. Applicants with Bachelor degrees in other areas may also apply. Applicants with other relevant backgrounds may apply for special admission and be considered in an admissions meeting which will be recorded in a separate admissions register.

With regard to the ranking of applicants who have other relevant subject backgrounds, please refer to the Regulations Concerning Ranking and Admission to Further Educational Programmes and Higher Degrees at Telemark University College of December 12th, 2005, § 4.

Students who have completed a 3-year Bachelor’s degree must have achieved an average grade of C in order to be considered for admission.

For students with a “Cand. mag. degree”, the minimum grade needed in order to be considered for admission is 2.8.
Applicants who have the relevant further educational qualifications, comprising 15 ECTS or more, in addition to a Bachelor’s degree within health and social care subjects or other relevant areas, may apply and obtain equivalency for their qualifications as part of their Master’s degree. In the processing of such applications, the further educational qualifications will be assessed in terms of their relevance to the programme and the level of the qualifications.

The programme also offers external candidates the opportunity of taking individual courses on the condition that they follow the course and complete obligatory course requirements.

Aim of the Programme

A key goal of the Master’s degree, Multicultural Preventative Care with Children and Adolescents, is to develop the skills which will enable students to understand children and youth in relation to their psychosocial and cultural backgrounds. Consequently, the study programme will provide students with increased insight into the formative conditions of children and young people in modern society, and provide knowledge about belonging, identity development, social conditions and challenges related to various socialisation arenas. Such insights are important in terms of preventative work with children and young people. This also concerns knowledge about the relationship between various social challenges and health promotion measures. Students must have knowledge of the meeting between cultures and develop awareness of the opportunities and challenges that cultural diversity offers. Students will gain an increased understanding of the interaction between children, youth and parents in a multicultural society, and acquire knowledge about the new challenges young people face and the problem areas that are particularly relevant in today's society. Important in this context is an increased cultural understanding and analysis. The programme will provide students with an understanding of the relationship between the health of children and adolescents, the extent of mastering situations and their social and cultural backgrounds. The programme will also equip students with the necessary skills when developing interdisciplinary cooperation and collaboration relationships with children and youth and their families. This involves, among other things, developing a critical awareness regarding expert’s knowledge and power of definition; and an awareness of professionalism, of change processes and innovative work. The programme covers both the social sciences and health care issues and will provide students with an interdisciplinary knowledge base. This involves examining the various themes from different approaches and subject perspectives. The programme will facilitate interdisciplinary discussion and problem-solving through lectures, seminars, study groups and through the presentation of student work. The programme will also provide students with insight into scientific theory and various research methods. Students should be able to interpret and present simple statistics, and be able to plan and complete their own Master’s thesis. A prerequisite in this work, is that students have acquired the necessary knowledge and awareness of key research-ethical requirements.

The programme will qualify successful candidates for positions involving preventative efforts within public, private and voluntary sectors, and may be applied within areas such as teaching, planning and reporting work, and research and development work both nationally and internationally.

Description of degree

Students who successfully complete the study programme will receive a Master’s degree in Multicultural Preventative Care of Children and Young People.

Curriculum and structure

Overview of courses
Code Course title Credits O/V *) Credits pr. semester
  S1(A) S2(V) S3(A) S4(V)
981EMN1 Family, Childhood and Socialisation 20.00 O 20      
981EMN1A Society and Mental Health 10.00 V 10      
981EMN1B Nutrition, Health and Lifestyle 10.00 V 10      
981EMN2 Cultural Analysis and Identity 15.00 O   15    
981EMN3 Scientific Theory, Research Methodology
and Ethics
15.00 O   15    
981EMN4 Master’s Thesis Project 60.00 O     30 30
Total: 30 30 30 30
*) O - Mandatory course, V - Optional course

The study programme comprises 120 ECTS; the full-time programme is of 2 year’s duration, and part-time programme, 3 years. The first year of study is common to both full-time and part-time students. Part-time students have the possibility of completing their Master’s thesis over a two year period (major course unit 4); whereas, full-time students will spend one year completing their thesis.

The programme’s first year consists of 3 common courses which are obligatory, and an optional specialisation in relation to course 1. If few students apply to take one of the specialisation courses, only one of the alternatives may be offered.

The programme’s second year (part-time: second and third years) consists of specialisation in methodology and work on the Master’s thesis.

Teaching during the first year of study will take place two days a week.

Overview of the courses in Multicultural Preventative Care with Children and Adolescents:

First year of study (full-time and part-time):

Major course unit 1: Family, Childhood and Socialisation, 20 ECTS, 1st semester

Optional course unit 1a: Society and Mental Health, 10 ECTS, 1st semester


Optional course unit 1b: Nutrition, Health and Life-Style, 10 ECTS, 1st semester
Major course unit 2: Cultural Analysis and Identity, 15 ECTS, 2nd semester

Major course unit 3: Scientific Theory, Research Methods and Research Ethics, Obligatory, 15 ECTS, 2nd semester

Second year of study full-time (one year)

Major course unit 4: Master’s Thesis Project and Specialisation in Methodology, 60 ECTS, 3rd and 4th semesters

Second year of study part-time (two years)

Major course unit 4: Master’s Thesis Project and Specialisation in Methodology, 60 ECTS, 3rd, 4th 5th and 6th semesters

There will be a maximum of 4 one-week workshops during the second year of study (specialisation in methodology).
Each course will be assessed, which will provide the basis for the course grade before starting the next course.

The Master’s degree thesis is an independent study that will be assessed separately.

Each course includes a mandatory reading list. A list of recommended literature is also available. The reading list consists of national and international subject literature and research material. Students may estimate roughly 100 pages of reading material for each ECTS credit.

Teaching and Learning Methods

The Master’s degree programme emphasises student involvement and the student’s ability to work independently. The organised teaching will alternate between lectures, seminars, group work and individual process-oriented work. Teaching and learning methods based on dialogue and discussions will be emphasised, and students will be given the opportunity to use their own academic and professional backgrounds as the basis for discussions. Such an approach is a key element in research-based teaching with the consequence that lectures and workshops become arenas both for the development of knowledge and reflection. Students will also receive guidance in groups and individually in their work on developing a Master’s thesis plan. Supervisors will be allocated for Master’s thesis work.

Student groups will be established, which will function as academic fora for cooperation throughout the programme. On the basis of these groups, various assignments will be completed, such as oral presentations, written group work and response groups. This will ensure subject specialisation and reflection across disciplines and professions, processing and integration of different types of knowledge and professional and personal growth. Emphasis will also be given to writing practice and response to written work throughout the programme. Such a process-oriented approach is also important in preparation for writing a thesis.

Students will be actively involved in the assessment of the programme. The purpose of regular assessment is to develop the quality of the study programme. Such methods make demands on both the students and the campus with regard to follow-up and involvement.

Obligatory Master’s degree seminars will be held in which students will present their work. It is recommended that students attend all the lectures.

Assessment Methods

Overview of the assessment methods of the programme’s courses

Major course unit






Type of assessment



Family, Childhood and Socialisation


One-week individual home exam. The assignment will comprise roughly 5000 words.

Graded mark





Society and Mental Health

Nutrition, Health and Life Style


5-hour individual examination with invigilation, without exam aids

Graded mark




Cultural Analysis and Identity


Individual assignment – 1 week.

The assignment comprises roughly 5000 words.

Graded mark




Scientific Theory, Research Methods and Research Ethics


Individual examination in statistics.

6-hour individual examination with invigilation without exam aids.


Grade A-F



Master’s thesis project description


The project description is obligatory

Approved/not approved



Master’s thesis


Written independent work (roughly 100 pages).

140 pages if written by 2 candidates.

Total graded mark for Master’s degree thesis and oral examination.

Each course will be independently assessed (grades A-F).
Four separate major course unit grades, and a single grade for the Master’s thesis will be entered on the diploma.

Requirements that must be fulfilled before the student can continue on the programme:
A prerequisite for starting work on the Master's thesis is that all the obligatory work from the 1st year has been given passing marks (A-E), and that the Master's thesis project has been approved.
Telemark University College Examination Regulations specify that students may be allowed 3 attempts at passing each course during the course of the programme. Normally, it is possible to retake a failed examination/assignment within the course of the academic year.

Assessment methods for new attempts are specified in the examination plan.

Below is a description of the grading system:



General, qualitative description of assessment criteria



An excellent performance, clearly outstanding. The candidate demonstrates excellent judgement and a high degree of independent thinking.


Very good

A very good performance, which is above average. Shows independent thinking.



An average performance, which is satisfactory in the most important areas.



Below-average performance, with significant shortcomings.



A performance that meets the minimum criteria, but no more.



A performance that does not meet the minimum academic criteria.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Frode Evenstad <Frode.EvenstadSPAMFILTER@hit.no>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 31/03/2009