Course Information

Who is the course for?

Our excellent reputation for quality Early Years training has been built up over the past 30 years and our multidisciplinary staff are well-qualified, up-to-date with recent developments and engage in research. Teaching takes place in a purpose-built building and students have access to the  on-site Childcare Centre, which Ofsted designated as Outstanding in its 2012 inspection. The Early Years curriculum has an excellent reputation,  both nationally and regionally, for innovative teaching and learning. It  provides a unique setting for training for excellence in the early years, dissemination of practice and clear progression routes to employment and further and higher education.

You will have the opportunity to enhance your cultural awareness of the industry by participating in residentials if you so wish, to locations such as China. New modules being introduced on this course will allow you the option of choosing to study ‘International Perspectives in the Early Years’, where you will be able to organise your own international placement for a period of between four and six weeks.

Awarding body: Plymouth University

What will I study on the course?

The modules you will study will include:

  • Professional Practice
  • Child Development
  • Child Protection
  • Working Together with Children, Families and Other Professionals
  • Early Years Project
  • Supporting Children's Learning (3-8 years)
  • Concepts of Inclusion in the Early Years Setting
  • Child Health
  • Promoting Positive Behaviour
  • The Role of the Early Years Professional
  • Option module: Current Curriculum Issue/International Early Years Education.

What is special about studying at Bridgwater College?

The College has a well-established international student support programme, which starts with an induction programme upon arrival to help students to acclimatise to life in the UK, and continues with the allocation of a personal tutor who will offer advice and guidance.

The College has an excellent reputation both regionally and nationally as a highly successful provider of education and training. The College:

  • Is a Learning and Skills Beacon status College
  • Has been designated an Outstanding College by Ofsted
  • Received 11 National Beacon Awards in recent years
  • Meets the Matrix Standard for information, advice and guidance services
  • Has been accredited with the Training Quality Standard for provision to employers

The examination and course results consistently place the college amongst the best of all education and training providers in the South West.

Visa Nationals

Bridgwater College has been recognised as Highly Trusted Sponsor by the UK Border Agency. As a student on an international student visa you must study at least 15 hours a week in College. Your attendance on the course will be strictly monitored by the college with a weekly register. Your student visa entitles you to work some hours during the week as well as full time during your holidays. The college applies a “zero absence policy”.

We strongly advise you to follow thoroughly the UKBA changes of regulations which may affect your decision. The college will inform you of any changes but cannot be made responsible. Rules will be applied on the date of the change or per the UKBA recommendation.

What will I need for the course?

You will require a minimum of 120 UCAS tariff points from a full Level 3 qualification in a relevant subject area and at least 4 GCSEs at grades A*-C including Maths and English or Level 2 equivalent.

You will need to be currently working or volunteering in an early years setting and to have at least one year’s experience in the field.  Have to demonstrate evidence of workplace support and to undergo an interview and enhanced CRB check before entry. 

Mature applicants with relevant experience who do not have the stated entry requirements are encouraged to apply.

What makes this course special?

Our excellent reputation for quality Early Years training has been built up over the past 25 years. Our multi-disciplinary staff are well qualified and keep up-to-date with recent developments in Early Years practice through regular professional development. Tutorial support is offered together with appropriate level study skills and additional support if required.

We have been awarded Beacon status for our work in the integration of theory and practice through our partnership with the Early Years Centre

At our last OFSTED inspection the Section was rated as Grade 1, outstanding, with ‘excellent teaching and learning.’

It is a Sector Endorsed qualification, designed to enhance career prospects for those already working with young children. It provides an opportunity to develop professional understanding, knowledge and key skills whilst still working.

How will I be assessed?

The course is taught through lectures, seminars, workshops, guided learning, practical sessions and tutorials. you will complete assignments, presentations and projects throughout the programme. It is crucial that you have the support of your line manager, mentor and colleagues.

How long is the course?

The course is delivered full-time on one extended day each week for two years.

Please note this is a two year course and there will be additional fees in the second year.

Will this course lead to a qualification?

You will achieve a Foundation Degree in Early Years (Sector Endorsed) which is recognised as a Level 5 course on the National Qualifications framework and the Early Years framework.

Can this course lead directly to a job?

This course will prepare you to undertake a management role within an Early Years setting which may include children's centres or nurseries. Previous students have completed the BA (Hons) and then progressed to gain Early Years Teaching Status; other students have completed the PGCE on achieving the Honours Degree in order to gain their Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

What can I do on completion of this course?

Successful holders of the Foundation Degree will be awarded 240 credits.

You will also be eligible to continue your studies to obtain a related honours degree through Plymouth University. On achieving a full degree you will be able apply for a place to work towards Early Years Professional Status and/or progress onto a further year's post graduate study in order to gain qualified teacher status, subject to successful interview.

How much will it cost?

For international students starting in September 2014, the course fees are £6,000 per annum.

Please Note: This is a two year course and there will be additional fees in the second year.

What Next?