MA in Children's Publishing


Programme Description

Shape stories and ideas for print and digital in the world’s first MA Children's Publishing course.

Creative, studio-based, practical course focusing on a popular area of publishing.

Specialist focus on international print and digital publications.

Excellent opportunities for industry collaboration and personal career development.

Children's and Young Adult books are internationally successful, high-growth areas of publishing in terms of innovation, revenues and employment.

This creative, industry-focused course offers a deep and immersive learning experience across editorial, marketing, rights and contracts, and design and production. Additionally, business strategy, audience and market research, user experience and digital product development, collaboration and project management are all covered, along with careers coaching.

The course has been carefully designed to offer each student the flexibility to tailor coursework and a final extended project to their own interests and ambitions.

You'll have access to up-to-date information from industry speakers and field trips to key events, which might include the Bath Children's Literature Festival, the London International Book Fair and the Bologna Children's Book Fair.


Publishing at Bath Spa is characterised by innovative approaches, creative studio-based collaborative working and high-quality making across all published forms, from handmade and print to digital and live.

This practice-based subject involves creative experimentation, intellectual and critical engagement with ideas, research and stories. It involves the application of creativity, imagination, critical judgement and commercial awareness in the conceptualisation, shaping and production of engaging content. A distinctive feature of the course will be the creative-digital-tech approach to innovation, drawing on our expertise in both digital publishing and physical books e.g. story apps and pop-up books.

A particular strength of this MA is in picture books, which form a significant part of the international children's publishing industry. The international context is an important component of the course in terms of translation, rights, illustration, and sales; as is an awareness of audience, market and merchandise.

In-built flexibility enables students to tailor the course to suit their interests and chosen specialism, such as new product development, editorial, marketing, design or production; young adult, educational and picture books. Students will graduate with a stunning professional portfolio demonstrating relevant knowledge and experience in the specific area in which they wish to build a career.

Course structure

Trimester one

You'll explore the industry across print and digital, experiment with the relationship between form and content and develop the skills to create your own original publication.

You'll learn about the distinctive nature of children's and YA books in the context of the international publishing business and the challenges and opportunities of digital technology.

Visiting industry experts will talk to you about the latest developments in a wide range of specialist areas, from rights to digital marketing, and commissioning strategy to working with illustrators.

Trimester two

You'll develop specialist skills for this distinctive area of publishing across print and digital publications. This will be hands-on and varied. Modules might include:

  • Story Lab
  • Visual Sequential Narrative

Specialist careers coaching is offered to all students on this course, from industry-experienced Publishing tutors. We help you develop a professional digital portfolio to present yourself and your work to the industry.

Trimester three

You'll complete an extended project or dissertation. Tutors will support you as you develop your ideas into a finished proposal and in-depth exploration of a topic.

Work experience is embedded throughout the programme, and you'll have the opportunity to work with a publisher on a live industry project.

Course modules

This course includes or offers the following modules.

  • Multiplatform Publishing
  • Experiments in Book Print and Production
  • Story Lab
  • Visual Sequencing and Narrative
  • Extended Project or Dissertation

How will I be assessed?

You'll be assessed through coursework and continuous assessment. You'll present creative and strategic industry project reports and pitches, publication samples, industry-standard documentation, reflective writing and critical essays.

How will I be taught?

Taught by subject experts and industry practitioners, you'll take part in tutor-led workshops and live industry projects in the first and second trimesters.

The extended project or dissertation is an opportunity for you to apply and extend your subject knowledge and creativity to develop your own original project. This will be taught through one-to-one tutorials and access to technical publishing workshops.


Study abroad

Students have completed Erasmus+ and GALA exchange programmes in a variety of countries.

Field trips

Industry field trips to key events such as the Bath Children's Literature Festival, The London International Book Fair, or the Bologna Children's Book Fair will offer industry networking opportunities and possible work experience opportunities.

Work placements, industry links and internships

Staff have excellent industry links - nationally and regionally. Our students have worked with international, award-winning children's publishers such as Book Island, Parragon Books and Chicken House. We develop work experience opportunities for students through our relationships with publishers.


You'll receive expert advice on developing an appropriate industry CV to accompany your digital portfolio, as well as specialist publishing careers advice.

MA Children's Publishing graduates will be prepared for a wide range of roles within the publishing industry such as editorial, design and production, and marketing. In addition, transferable skills will make you attractive to recruiters in digital content development, digital marketing, merchandising and education. You might also set up your own businesses or continue your studies at PhD level.

Cost & Fees

  • UK/EU students full time - 2019/20 entry £7,395
  • International students full time - 2019/20 entry £14,300
Last updated May 2019

About the School

Bath Spa University is about more than studying. It’s about getting stuck in: thinking, making and doing. About bumping into friends on campus, embracing challenges and genuinely caring. We push bound ... Read More

Bath Spa University is about more than studying. It’s about getting stuck in: thinking, making and doing. About bumping into friends on campus, embracing challenges and genuinely caring. We push boundaries and ourselves. If that sounds good to you, you’ll fit in well. Read Less