Why study this course

Continue working or volunteering while pursuing your degree, providing you with valuable practical experience alongside your academic studies

The National Student Survey 2022 revealed an impressive satisfaction rate of 96.85% among students in professional studies programs, highlighting quality and effectiveness

Opportunity to study with support from a research-active team, ensuring you receive the latest insights and developments in the field

Work towards meeting the Department for Education's Full and Relevancy Criteria, providing a clear path to meeting professional standards in early childhood education

Course summary

Are you passionate about early childhood education and ready to take the next step in your academic and professional growth? Our BA (Hons) work-based degree program is the perfect opportunity for individuals who have already completed a suitable Foundation Degree or Higher Education Diploma in Early Childhood. This program seamlessly blends practice-based learning with campus-based teaching sessions that take place once a week, ensuring you can maintain your current work or volunteer commitments.

Key facts


BA (Hons)

UCAS code



1 Year

Mode of study


Start date


Awarding institution

Bishop Grosseteste University

Institution code


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About this course

If you've previously studied our Foundation Degree Early Childhood Education in Practice, this program is your natural progression. Over the course of one year, you'll integrate your previous learning experience of working with young children into your studies. This comprehensive course provides invaluable insights into effective management and leadership within the children's workforce, allowing you to deepen your understanding of the complex factors contributing to children's learning and development.

Drawing from your foundation degree knowledge, this course aims to challenge and expand your understanding of how to support children by exploring alternative and international perspectives on child development. Collaborating with students from related courses, will broaden your perspectives on working with children and young people, enhancing your employability.

In addition to your coursework, this program offers you the exciting opportunity to delve into research. You will be expertly guided in research methods, ethical considerations, and report writing, empowering you to contribute to the field of early childhood education through your own research endeavours. This invaluable experience will further enrich your academic journey and career prospects.

Throughout the program, the BA (Hons) Early Childhood Education in Practice aligns closely with the full and relevant criteria of the Department for Education and the graduate competency requirements of the Early Childhood Studies Degree Network (ECSDN). Additionally, it includes elements of assessed practice. Upon successful completion of this program, you'll have the opportunity to obtain this sector-recognized accreditation. Please note that this accreditation requires you to hold English at level 2.

Join us on this enriching journey and elevate your career in the field of early childhood education. Enrol in the BA (Hons) Early Childhood Education in Practice and unlock your potential to make a meaningful impact on the lives of young children. Our weekly sessions, starting from 1 pm, are designed to fit your schedule, allowing you to balance work, education, and your passion for nurturing young minds.

What you will study

Students on this course currently study some or all of the following modules:

This module introduces you to the planning and design of an independent study and serves as a prerequisite for the Level 6 final independent study module. It introduces you to, and guides you through planning a research question, deciding on an appropriate research method and sample group that will allow you to complete the small-scale research project in Independent Study Part 2 module. In addition, you will create a research proposal by and engage in theoretical and practical principles, as well as learning to recognise your own limitations. The module is based on ethical concepts and policies, and you will study ethical complexity in connection to your chosen research subject and show this by participating in the ethical approval process.

This module will develop your capacity for critical thinking and analysis and encourage you to form and articulate an argument which is robustly supported by relevant sources. The module will enable you to study a pertinent, critical issue within your sector. Taught content will offer examples of current, and potential future issues in the field of early childhood, childhood and youth and education. By exploring a range of issues, the teaching and learning strategy undertakes to present a model of how to select and investigate a critical issue and craft an argument that draws upon (for example) practice-based evidence, national/local statistics, published research and established theory. You will investigate the political, social and/or economic drivers behind your chosen issue and consider the implications for professional practice. These may include, for example, the contribution of multi-agency colleagues, international perspectives and the barriers and affordances of the issue within your own work setting and professional practice.

The module adopts a work-based and problem-solving pedagogy where learning is grounded in the external context of your professional practice. Assessments require application of what is being learnt to your practice context, enabling you to solve real issues from your organisations and reflect on your own work-based experience. The module provides the opportunity to focus in some depth on aspects of professional practice including leadership and management. The module content will involve the study of key aspects of professionalism such as reflective, critical and ethical practice where you will explore relevant theoretical perspectives. Legal frameworks and national standards will be examined in relation to personal competencies and leading practice within settings. Leadership and management theory will be critically evaluated. Interagency and collaborative working will be critically explored and issues of facilitating dynamic change within the sector in response to global and cultural influences will be addressed.

The Independent Study builds on earlier inquiry-based studies and acts as a culmination of studies. This module provides an opportunity for you to carry out a small-scale research project related to your work supporting children, young people and/or families demonstrating the ability to manage your own learning, and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources. The subject is founded on ethical concepts and principles, and you will investigate ethical complexity in relation to your research topic of choice. This module requires you to draw on and apply the broad knowledge-base and research skills that have been developed across your undergraduate studies in a fully developed individual, inquiry-based study. You will review research design, methods, and data collection and analysis tools and software appropriate to practitioner research. Ethical issues will be addressed, including the key principles of informed consent, anonymity and confidentiality. There will be an emphasis on enabling you to demonstrate the limitations and uncertainty of knowledge and the influence of perspective and theoretical approaches on findings and conclusions. The importance of writing with a high degree of accuracy and fluency for an academic audience will be reinforced and made a clear expectation.

This module draws together and develops the key aspects of contemporary perspectives in early childhood education from 0-8.

You will identify relevant principles and values to examine how different practices are utilised within the different age ranges of early childhood education. You will explore supporting children’s well-being, early learning, progression and transitions through the application of contemporary theory. The impact of policy and legislation is critically considered using an depth examination of evidence emphasising the importance of meaningful participation and questions the universalised idealisms of young people’s rights and notions of place in a globalised world.

In addition to the traditional teaching and learning strategies of interactive lectures, seminars, discussions and tutorials the VLE will be used, for example, discussion boards, groups, collaborate, Padlet, Blogs, and Teams, as a means by which you can discuss work-based practices and share views.

Online individual and group support will be available from tutors. You will develop subject expertise and increase graduate attributes, most notably subject knowledge, academic literacy, global citizenship, information literacy, and employability

This module is an evidenced based e-portfolio for those that have opted for the graduate practitioner competency route and will have been working on it throughout the duration of the programme.

The e-portfolio will detail and evidence progress against the nine graduate competencies required by QAA (2020)

Entry requirements

You will typically have 240 HE credits from a Foundation degree or a HE Diploma in a relevant field of study.

You will be required to have a Level 2 functional skills qualification in English and Mathematics or a Level 2 functional skills equivalent qualification as stated here.

You are expected to have a current (or prospective) voluntary or paid employment in a relevant setting for a minimum of 12 hours per week, totalling 360 hours each year of study.

Typically, you are expected to have three years of experience in a voluntary or paid role working with children.

Further information

Click here for important information about this course including additional costs, resources and key policies.

In accordance with University conditions, students are entitled to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning, RP(C)L, based on relevant credit at another HE institution or credit Awarded for Experiential Learning, (RP(E)L).

How you will be taught

The BA (Hons) Professional Practice programmes are work-based degrees and form part of the hybrid work-based learning approach detailed within section 22. All modules are based around students’ practice and assessment learning outcomes across modules at all levels requiring students to make links between theoretical and work-based practices.

BA (Hons) students do not attend work-work work placement as such, but they are involved in continuous and consistent work-related learning in their own work settings as a condition of the programme


Assessment types within and across modules have been carefully considered throughout the programme to provide you with a variety of assessment methods in each year of study. The modes of assessment combine to draw and assess your practical work-based knowledge and theoretical understanding of the module content with the aim of developing transferable skills including the acquisition of academic literacies.

Assessments are a combination of practical oral assessments such as, but not limited to, presentations, discussions, debates, poster presentations, and narrated PowerPoints. Coursework will include, but is not limited to, essays, portfolios, case studies, reflections, and an e-portfolio. The e-portfolio is only required for those students working towards the GPC competencies. If you choose the GPC pathway, you will be required to maintain a record of achievement, which will be supported through an e-portfolio application hosted within the VLE.

Careers & Further study

The BA (Hons) Professional Practice programmes are work-based degrees, with the majority of students within paid employment.

Early Childhood Education students often focus on pathways into teaching, via a PGCE. Other students see the degree as a springboard to other educational careers or management roles. Although this list is not inclusive, students on BA (Hons) Early Childhood Education in Practice are often looking for full and relevancy to be counted into adult: child ratios within settings, managerial opportunities, and work with the local authority.

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Studying at BGU is a student-centred experience. Staff and students work together in a friendly and supportive atmosphere as part of an intimate campus community. You will know every member of staff personally and feel confident approaching them for help and advice, and staff members will recognise you, not just by sight, but as an individual with unique talents and interests.

We will be there to support you, personally and academically, from induction to graduation.

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Undergraduate course applicants must apply via UCAS using the relevant UCAS code. For 2024 entry, the application fee is £27, and you can make a maximum of 6 choices.
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