Why study this course
Learn about the range of core psychological domains and methods, accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS)
Learn about and engage with on-site research projects, exploring contemporary issues such as mindfulness, psychopathy and the science of dreaming
Progressing into Teaching? FREE pre-teaching course and guaranteed interview for PGCE
Have you always wanted to work with young children (ages 0-8) but are unsure on your career pathway? If so then this course is ideal for you.
If you don’t have, or don’t think you will attain, the normal tariff points for studying at BGU, this course will enable you to study for a degree without any UCAS points. The course is delivered over four years and includes a Foundation Year, which gives you a perfect introduction to what it means to be a university student and prepares you for effective undergraduate study. In your Foundation Year, you will study eight modules, all of which are designed to equip you with the necessary academic skills and knowledge to progress successfully in your chosen subject. You will also engage in a series of bespoke subject sessions delivered by experts, designed to introduce you to your chosen subject area.
Through studying a Psychology degree at BGU you’ll gain an in-depth understanding of the scientific nature of the subject and of its wider cultural and social impact. This course will develop your understanding of psychology and its theories of the mind, emotions and behaviour and become familiar with how these theories are applied in our lives, communities and societies.
The BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies is a three-year undergraduate programme which introduces students to aspects of education, health and social care, with a specific focus on children from 0 – 8 years of age.
Mode of study
Bishop Grosseteste University
About this course
Do you ever wonder why is it we behave as we do? How do gangs, teams and friendship groups form? Do you wonder if smiling really does make you feel more positive? Do you often venture into the bigger questions about life and who we are?
Psychology has a science base, yet includes a balance of liberal arts, technological knowledge, statistics and computer-based skills. As well as classic psychological theories and research, on this undergraduate degree you’ll be debating social issues, studying specific mental processes, such as memory, language and attention, as well as broader issues and theories – both historical and contemporary. As well as applying psychological knowledge to a range of subjects, you will develop your skills in problem-solving, data analysis, predict and reasoning, with a focus on real-world application.
Here at BGU in Lincoln, we ensure you have close support and contact with your tutors and, with small group sizes, you’ll always get the support and feedback you need on your course. We also know how important it is to experience a real working environment so, through work placements and other projects, you’ll be equipped for whichever career path you may choose after your degree. With research-informed teaching and research-active staff, you’ll receive scientific training and gain an in-depth understanding of the nature of the subject, at the same time as applying your knowledge and theory to real-life.
Early Childhood Studies
The course offers graduates a range of employability opportunities with module content supporting students in developing a wide range of transferable skills, as well as providing a curriculum which enables students to develop their academic skills. Students who graduate from the programme will be awarded a full and relevant degree enhancing employability by enabling them to seek roles in early childhood settings as part of the adult: child ratio.
What you will study
As a student on this course, you may study some or all of the modules listed below.
In this module you will explore and consider what it means to be a successful learner at university. You’ll explore the principles of effective learning and engage with a range of tools and techniques to practise and develop strategies for your own learning. These include for example, understanding your needs as a learner, effective time management and organisational skills.
You will learn about a range of resources and practise locating and using these resources to support effective learning. These resources will include, for example, textbooks, websites, academic journals, and popular press. In addition to these key techniques, the module covers academic conventions including referencing, citation and the risks of plagiarism.
This module will allow you to learn to utilise sources in a considered and critical way. You will begin to engage effectively with literature and other sources in a meaningful manner that promotes deep learning and enables knowledge and understanding of a topic. You will also begin to differentiate qualitative and quantitative data and consider their appropriate interpretation and use.
Critical thinking is an integral part of university study. While studying this module you will define critical thinking, its importance and how it can help you in your learning. A range of critical thinking models will be utilised to demonstrate how this works in action, allowing you to recognise critical thinking and identify barriers and challenges.
The skilled use of digital technologies is an important element in university study and is used to support both the obtaining and demonstration of knowledge. This module will develop your digital capabilities and confidence, encouraging you to develop techniques for the purposeful use of a range of digital tools to support learning. These include specific tools such as the Virtual Learning Environment and appropriate and effective uses of wider applications such as social media, email and the internet.
This module explores, compares and evaluates a range of communication types, giving you opportunities to combine written and spoken communication in a range of contexts and for a range of audiences. From a theoretical, sociological perspective you will explore different communication media and styles of discourse, for example, discussion, debate, enquiry and reporting.
Reflection is a powerful learning tool that enables you to consider your existing knowledge and also to plan for your future learning and professional development. The module content includes the principles of reflective learning and collaborative planning with reference to structured models.
Academic writing is an essential element of successful university study, so this module explores a range of techniques to help develop your own academic writing style. It will enable you to draw together your learning throughout the Foundation Year and reflect on the feedback you have received. You will structure a clear and effective piece of academic writing on a subject-linked topic in which you will apply standard academic conventions.
This module will introduce you to core areas and methods integral to the discipline and study of psychology. It will provide a historical and contextual backdrop to psychology as a scientific discipline, as well as a focus on research methodologies. This module will introduce you to the wonderful world of numberland, where you will embark on a quantitative journey through research methods and statistical techniques. It will equip you with the tools necessary to investigate questions you may have about human psychology, and to do it in a robust and scientific manner. It will explore aspects of research design, underpinnings of statistical theory, as well as core statistical techniques such as t-tests and correlation. It will analyse data using statistical software and interpret related output appropriately. This module will also provide an introduction to qualitative research methods, where you will be introduced to a range of applied qualitative methods in psychology, the core philosophical underpinnings of such techniques, as well as its relation to quantitative methods.
The module will provide you with an understanding of developmental psychology across the lifespan, exploring physical development, cognitive development, social and emotional development throughout childhood and later into maturity. You will gain a deeper understanding of the theories, themes and concepts in developmental psychology and appreciate that development continues throughout the lifespan and is influenced by a range of factors including class, culture, gender, ethnicity and heredity. In addition, you will learn about the current issues and methods involved in lifespan research, together with specific empirical studies that address developmental research questions and contemporary and cross-cultural developments that have emerged in the field.
This module will immerse you in the origins of psychology, with respect to early understandings of what psychology is (Plato; Aristotle), as well as the development and establishment of Psychology as a discipline in its own right. You will be introduced to the history of science and the Scientific Revolution, as well as corresponding developments in metaphysics and epistemology as manifested in The Enlightenment, and how this contributed to the emergence and shaping of psychology as an experimental science from which behaviourism and the cognitive revolution later emerged. This context will enable you to understand debates within psychology that concern it’s standing as a science and the differences in psychological research methodologies that accompany those debates. Focus on the historicisation of psychology will prompt you to evaluate your perceptions of Psychology and how you, and society understand and identify with it in both professional and personal settings. Furthermore, “classic” studies in psychology will be explored in reference to recent research that demonstrates issues with their findings, especially in the context of the current replicability crisis in Psychology.
This module explores policy, provision,and practice both historically and currently, providing you with the opportunity to understand what shifts and shapes early years policy and the subsequent impact of policy on practice. The module presents an historical overview of the development of early childhood provision using the lens of social and political discourse and, through an exploration of the work of key thinkers and philosophers who have influenced current policy and provision. The module includes a study of historical practice and provision for young children and covers the work of early social, educational and health reformers. You will also examine the work of more contemporary thinkers and will be introduced to some alternative education styles. You will be encouraged to question underlying philosophies and the social and political motivations for shaping policy when creating provision for young children. You will be encouraged to reflect on your own personal philosophy and how this might have been influenced, and how this may subsequently influence your own practice. During this module, you will have the opportunity to develop your graduate competencies with regards to your understanding of the relevant frameworks, and how these are applied to practice, as well as developing your understanding of policy.
This module will explore how young children learn from a range of perspectives. You will be introduced to constructivism, behaviourism, social learning theory and humanism, and explore how these may shape our understanding of how children learn. The module will also begin to broadly explore typical development in relation to the specific areas of children’s development and consider how theories of learning can be applied in practice to support young children’s learning on enabling environments. You will explore what is meant by ‘enabling environments. The module will cover aspects of the environment, both indoors and out, underpinned by theoretical understanding of differing provision. The role of the adult will be examined in relation to the environment provided. This will include developing an understanding of adult led, child led, and child-initiated provision, and the role of observation and assessment. The rights of the child will be introduced, focused on article 12, critically exploring how the voice of the child is heard when developing provision. You will develop a range of graduate competencies, including an understanding of the practitioner’s role in advocating for young children’s rights and participation; understanding the relevant frameworks, and the role of observation, listening and planning in supporting children’s early learning; as well as evidencing aspects of professional development.
Personality and Individual Differences is a multifaceted module that covers the history, cornerstone theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches of personality research. The structure of human personality is examined using a trait-based approach, which is applied in a variety of sub-topics leading to a comprehensive understanding of how personality and individual differences influence thought and behaviour in different settings. The contributions of biological and environmental factors in the development of personality and individual differences, as well as associated controversies are also explored. You will consolidate your learning by utilising psychometric methods to design and run a quantitative study in an area of personality research of your choosing. Accordingly, this module helps to prepare you for your third-year dissertation module in providing experience of the research process, from design, gaining ethical approval, data collection and analysis to reporting and discussing findings.
This module will develop your knowledge and understanding of social psychology, one of the core areas of psychology introduced in Researching Psychology I. Social Psychology will engage you with the breadth and diversity of social psychology as a discipline from social constructionism and group processes through to social cognition, collective behaviour, and social interactions. The purpose is to help you gain a detailed understanding of how people think, feel and act in relation to others and the world around them. Key topics will engage you with the indexical nature of the discipline locating historical and contemporary research and theory within its broader socio-economic and cultural context.
This module will build and extend on core methods and statistical techniques acquired at level 4 in Researching Psychology I. You will develop knowledge and skills integral to advanced psychological research designs, including the use of quantitative and qualitative analysis techniques. Specifically, this module covers three research methods strands including experimental, psychometric, and qualitative methods. Statistical underpinnings and application of techniques relevant to experimental (e.g., One-way ANOVA, Factorial ANOVA) and psychometric-based research (e.g., Regression, Multiple Regression) are covered and directly extend methods learnt in Researching Psychology I. Additionally, you will develop applied methods skills by utilising specialist software such as SPSS for the analysis of quantitative data. A variety of qualitative approaches, methods and analyses will also be considered such as interviewing skills, diaries and photo elicitation, discourse analysis, polytextual thematic analysis and descriptive phenomenology.
This module focuses on the significance of family and community on children’s lives. You will consider the influence of the family and community on children’s lives from holistic and ecological perspectives. You will explore and evaluate changing concepts of family diversity, parenting, care and social and cultural capital and develop your understanding of the barriers and solutions to making communities sustainable and supportive environments for young children. The module will support you to develop the skills necessary to understand and develop respectful partnership with parents and carers.
In this module you will have the opportunity to develop your understanding of play and its value for babies and young children. You will explore current understandings and contemporary discourses around play such as concepts of ‘adult-led’ and ‘child-led’ play and you will be encouraged to evaluate current arguments about the role and function of both types of play especially in educational contexts. Content will focus on linking theory to practice drawing upon your placement experiences and will address themes such as resilience and risk in outdoor play; the child’s right to play; and the place of play and creativity in policy. Visiting speakers will contribute different professional perspectives for example from play work or play therapy.
In this module you will explore the concept of ‘childhood’ from philosophical, sociological and psychological perspectives. Common assumptions about children and childhood will be identified and you will consider how these perceptions are socially constructed according to historical time, place and culture, drawing upon the work of a range of philosophers and educational pioneers. Western perspectives of the child and childhood will be critiqued and contrasted with non-Western views and practices. The module will explore some of the contemporary debates around children and childhood today and consider implications for practice in the early years.
This module will enable you to develop an understanding of policy and practice with regard to safeguarding and child protection in early childhood settings and schools. Key legislative and statutory guidance for practitioners will be introduced and you will learn about the types, signs and causes of abuse and the implications for children’s outcomes, including those risks posed by globalisation and technology. You will understand the possible impacts of the safeguarding process on young children and their families and appreciate the importance of working with others to safeguard and promote the well-being of babies and young children. You will learn when to signpost to other services or designated people within a school or setting to safeguard individual children. Safeguarding issues will be explored from theoretical perspectives and with reference to historical cases and current examples.
The Dissertation requires you to work independently in producing a substantial piece of research that demonstrates mastery of academic knowledge and research skills commensurate with Level 6. You will draw on your existing repertoire of experience garnered over the course of the degree in the development of a report akin to a journal style article, representative of the discipline. You will initiate your research protocol as defined in the first semester module, Research Project Design, and subsequently manage participant recruitment, data collection, and data analysis in accordance with the BPS Code of Ethics and Conduct. The Dissertation should aspire to produce published articles in the discipline (corresponding to the subject topic). The design of the study should successfully address the research question such that data collection and data analysis provide meaningful insight into the identified gap in the literature. You are expected to thoroughly scrutinise the findings in relation to relevant theoretical and methodological issues and in doing so, produce a meaningful contribution to the literature.
This module focuses upon the BPS Core domain Biopsychology, covering aspects of the biological basis of behaviours, emotions and mental health. The module aims to provide an overview of how the sub-disciplines within biopsychology (e.g., neuropsychology, cognitive neuroscience) approach psychological research questions. The module will support development of an in-depth understanding of neural conductance and major brain structures/systems to particular neurotransmitter systems as explanations of how the brain affects behaviour. The module aims to develop your understanding of the anatomical and physiological processes that underpin psychological experience whilst exploring the methodologies used to examine contemporary issues in biopsychology. To achieve these aims, the module will enable you to critically examine how contemporary biopsychological models are developed and evaluate these as explanations for behaviour using key examples (e.g., emotions, memory and learning, drugs and addiction and mental health disorders). This module promotes the application of multiple perspectives (including knowledge gained of other domains in previous years) to critique biopsychological theory and to critically appraise information, using evidenced based reasoning.
This module develops knowledge and understanding of the BPS core domain of Cognitive Psychology which you will have been introduced to at level 4 in Researching Psychology I. Throughout this module, there will be discussion and critical evaluation of a range of different cognitive psychological constructs (e.g., processing resources, attention, memory, language) as a toolkit for theorising mental functioning. You will critically engage with core constructs in cognitive psychology, associated methodologies and key perspectives (for example cognitive neuropsychology, neuroscience, fundamentals of the experimental method). Throughout the module, the use of computerised experimental paradigms will be explored, which underpin theories. For example, you will have the opportunity to engage with classical experimental paradigms or paradigms with a cognitive basis such learning, memory and problem-solving computerised tasks, within workshop sessions. The module aims to showcase the breadth of approaches to understand cognitive processes whilst critically engaging you with relevant associated methodologies. You will have opportunities to engage in a variety of cognitive experiments to facilitate your understanding of key topics and experimental approaches.
The module provides an opportunity for you to build upon and apply the key intellectual, transferable and practical skills gained at Levels 4 and 5 of the programme in order to design an appropriate research project for your Psychology dissertation. Throughout the module a series of lectures, seminars and workshops will further develop your research design skills in experimental, quasi-experimental, surveys and/or qualitative research methods. In addition, you will develop a critical understanding of ethical challenges associated with carrying out psychological research leading to the development of a research project that adheres to the British Psychological Society’s Code of Ethics and Conduct (2018) and BGU's Research Ethics Committee standards.
In this module you will have the opportunity to build on your understanding of the constructs of ‘childhood’ through an examination of past and present contexts, and the challenges and possibilities of global and future childhood. You will be encouraged to reflect on a number of thought-provoking debates around global issues surrounding childhood, including child labour and child soldiers, child marriage, the global impact of social media on childhood and the global inequalities in education and health. You will be introduced to some of the policy and legislation around protecting the rights of the child and will reflect on the nature of children as objects of National and Global concern.
In this module you will reflect on the impact of change on the developing child, with a focus on the range of transitions which children experience from birth to 8 years. The module will draw from research which argues that if a child is taught to cope with the expected changes that are anticipated through childhood, then they will develop better coping mechanisms when faced with unexpected changes. You will be encouraged to reflect on the changes experienced by children in a rapidly changing society and will examine some of the strategies which might be used to support children through these expected and unexpected changes. A key focus of this module will be that of the promotion of resilience, resourcefulness and reciprocity, and the role of the adult in fostering these in children in order to prepare them for a future of change and supporting more positive outcomes into adulthood.
In this module you will be introduced to theories and models of leadership and management as they apply to an educational setting. You will be encouraged to reflect on the range of leadership roles within an early year setting and will consider how these have changed and developed from an historical perspective relating to policy and legislation in the early childhood sector. You will reflect on the complexity of managing provision in an ever-changing landscape and will examine some of the challenges and opportunities of working with a range of stakeholders through effective teamwork and application of different leadership styles. Leadership will be set in the contemporary contexts of leadership for learning, multi-professional leadership through working with families and communities and self-evaluation leading to improvement in provision and practice in early childhood settings. These will be explored through a reflection on the skills and attributes needed by leadership and managers in early years contexts.
Application for this course is via UCAS, although there is no formal requirement for UCAS points to access the course (normally GCSE English or equivalent is desirable). As part of your application you will have the opportunity to speak with a member of BGU Admissions staff to resolve any questions or queries you may have
You will also need GCSEs in English Language and Mathematics at grade 4 (previously C) or above (or equivalent).
For International Entry GCSE requirements please contact our Enquiries Team on firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are asked to undertake a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check as part of the conditions of your offer, this must be completed prior to the start of your course at a cost of £57.20.
The Foundation Year syllabus does not include any specific element of upskilling in English language and you are not entitled to apply for Accredited Prior Learning, AP(C)L into a Foundation Year.
Unfortunately, we are unable to accept applications from international students for Foundation year programmes linked to Psychology and Early Childhood Studies courses.
How you will be taught
There is no one-size-fits-all method of teaching at BGU – we shape our methods to suit each subject and each group, combining the best aspects of traditional university teaching with innovative techniques to promote student participation and interactivity.
You will be taught in a variety of ways, from lectures, tutorials and seminars, to practical workshops, coursework and work-based placements. Small group seminars and workshops will provide you with an opportunity to review issues raised in lectures, and you will be expected to carry out independent study.
Placements are a key part of degree study within many courses at BGU. They provide an enriching learning experience for you to apply the skills and knowledge you will gain from your course and, in doing so, give valuable real-world experience to boost your career.
During the Foundation Year, you will have opportunities to experience a range of formative and summative assessments. These include short-form writing, annotated bibliographies, presentations, digital technologies, reflective journals, and academic essays. All modules involve early, small, and frequent informal and formal assessments so as to be supportive and build confidence, while ensuring development of the core academic skills required for successful study throughout your degree. Assessment strategies are balanced, diverse, and inclusive, ensuring that you will experience a range of assessments to support comprehensive preparation for undergraduate study. You will also have the opportunity for self-evaluation and personal reflection on your own learning progress and development of skills.
Assessments in Psychology take place at the end of each module in order for you to demonstrate your understanding of the objectives covered. A wide range of assessment methods is used to support your learning, including portfolios, presentations, displays and examinations and laboratory projects. The Psychology course includes assessments that are designed to develop and refine specific skills that you may well need to draw on as a psychologist, whether that is as specific as demonstrating your practical counselling skills in the Introduction to Psychological Therapies module, or openly argumentative as in the group debate in the Personality and Individual Differences module! Assessments are also designed to enhance your critical thinking and analysis skills – something that psychologists are well known for.
Early Childhood Studies
We recognise that individuals come from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences, so we use a variety of assessment strategies in our courses. Assessments in Early Childhood Studies take place at the end of each module in order for you to demonstrate your understanding of the objectives covered. A wide range of assessment methods is used to support your learning, including the production of portfolios, presentations and displays. You’ll also be assessed through written essays, discussions, debates and multimedia projects. Assessments are not only designed to assess your knowledge and understanding but also help you to develop transferable skills which will support you as you enter the early year's workforce.
Careers & Further study
In Psychology we allow you to develop the knowledge and skills which will make you attractive to an employer. Psychology graduates go on to work in a range of sectors including teaching, education or training, local government, health and social work and in areas of industry including human resources management. By the end of this course, you will be ready to apply your knowledge of psychology to the world in which you live, with the necessary workplace skills for a variety of future careers. Future careers for Psychology graduates may include work within Clinical settings, Counselling, Mental Health services, Education and Research.
Early Childhood Studies
Early Childhood is a growing sector and the skills learnt on this course will enable you to enter the children’s workforce in a range of different roles. Some of our students seek a route into teaching through a PGCE qualifications here at BGU, whilst others enter other teacher training routes. Many of our graduates have gone on to further study in areas of specialism including psychology, speech and language or midwifery, whilst others have entered the workforce as early years practitioners and room leaders in early years settings, before going on to management roles. The diverse nature of this course will also enable you to go on to further study such as postgraduate study on a master degree, seeking wider opportunities in many different fields, including health and social care, children’s social work, play therapy and speech and language therapy. Possible future careers for Early Childhood Studies graduates may include as a Teacher or classroom assistant, Speech and language therapy, Early years management, Social work or Play therapy.
"Having mentored many students on placements, it's always gratifying to work alongside those who already have an insight into how children learn and develop. These are the students who can make links between what they have learned in theory with what they then see in practice. These are the students who are able to support children to make progress in areas such as language, communication and social development. The opportunities they have to observe and work with children, coupled with their knowledge of the theory is helping to build an insightful and professional early years workforce". (Kate Hodge, Early Years Practitioner)
What Our Students Say
Discover what life is like at Bishop Grosseteste University from our students.
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.
Fees & Finance
A lot of student finance information is available from numerous sources, but it is sometimes confusing and contradictory. That’s why at BGU we try to give you all the information and support we can to help to throughout the process. Our Student Advice team are experts in helping you sort out the funding arrangements for your studies, offering a range of services to guide you through all aspects of student finance step by step.
Undergraduate course applicants must apply via UCAS using the relevant UCAS code. For 2023 entry, the application fee is £27, and you can make a maximum of 6 choices. For 2024 entry the application fee is £27.50.
For all applicants, there are full instructions at UCAS to make it as easy as possible for you to fill in your online application, plus help text where appropriate.