Early Childhood Studies Foundation Degree FdA

This course is validated by: Lancaster University

Course Information

  • Course Code: SS2599A11
  • Fees: View fees and financial support information
  • UCAS Code: LX53
  • Validated by: Lancaster University
  • Study Mode: Full time and Part time
  • This course is recruiting in: 2016/17, 2017/18, 2018/19

Our Foundation Degree in Early Childhood Studies is for those students who are working, or who have a desire to work, in the Early Years sector. This qualification aims to enhance individual's knowledge and understanding of the holistic nature of the early years sector.

It has been designed in response to major changes in the government's policies in working in the sector these include: Dame Claire Tickell's Review of the Early Years Foundation Stage (2011), Graham Allen's 'Early Intervention: The Next Steps' (2011) and Frank Field's 'The Foundation Years: Preventing Poor Children Becoming Poor Adults' (2010). You will study modules such as: Foundations of Healthy Development, Childhood, Culture and Society and Building Positive Relationships amongst others. If you wish to work in the sector you will find this course will enable you to fit studying around other commitments.

What will I study?

You will study 16 units to complete the course. These modules will examine the theories and principles relating to professional practice within the Early Childhood Studies and Education Sector. Personal Development Planning is also integral to the programme and you will work on developing a portfolio of evidence within the Reflective Journey modules at levels four and five in order to reflect upon the links between theory and practice. The development of this portfolio will illustrate your continuing professional development and professional competencies.

During the programme you will also be required to complete 120 placement/work-based learning hours within an Early Years or Education setting with children under the age of 8. This is a mandatory part of the foundation degree. If you are already working with an Early Years or Education setting with children under the age of 8, you will usually use this experience instead of completing a formal placement.

Modules include:

  • Reflective Journey 1
  • Foundations of Healthy Development
  • Childhood, Culture and Society
  • Values and Principles of Professional Practice
  • Building Positive Relationships
  • Creative Effective Environments
  • Facilitating Positive Parenting
  • Preparation for Research
  • Reflective Journey 2
  • Creativity in the Early Years
  • Early Years Policy and Legislation
  • Early Years Research
  • Leading Quality Provision
  • Keeping Children Safe
  • Practical and Responsive Pedagogy
  • Early Identification and Intervention

Download the Programme Specification for FdA Early Childhood Studies. The Programme Specification will give you further information about the course structure, learning outcomes and detailed information about the assessment you can expect during the course.


Entry Requirements

You'll need 120 UCAS tariff points. All applicants must show that they have a good level of spoken or written English, and if English is not your first language you'll need to demonstrate the ability to study in English. Please check the International section of the website for details. Applicants who do not meet the standard entry criteria but have relevant work / life experience will be considered on an individual basis and may be invited to interview. You'll need a clear current CRB certificate. 

Please note: For 2017 entry the UCAS Tariff is changing and the UCAS points required to enter this programme will be different from 2016. For those joining this programme in September 2017, you will need to have 48 UCAS Tariff points. All other entry criteria (as specified above) remain in place.

If you require more information on the UCAS tariff for 2017 entry please visit: https://www.ucas.com/ucas/undergraduate/getting-started/entry-requirements/tariff/new-tariff

If you are an International Student from outside of the EU it is a requirement for you to have a Tier 4 Visa in order to study with us. In order for you to undertake this particular programme of study, you will also need to demonstrate that you have a good level of written and spoken English and will require a UK VI Academic IELTS score of 5.5. Please note: the fees for International Students from outside of the EU, for this particular programme are £9,250 per year. Fees are subject to change in subsequent years.

How will I be assessed?

Throughout the course you will be assessed in various ways. These include both practical and written forms of assessment. Group and individual presentations, reports, production of a rationale with a supporting academic poster, case study scenarios and open book examinations all form part of the course. All assessment are closely linked to practice and are aimed at enabling you to transfer theoretic perspectives to your Early Years setting. Assessments are supported through the use of our virtual learning environment (Moodle) where additional resources are available that extend learning opportunities beyond the classroom environment.

Formative and summative assessments enable lecturers or tutors to monitor the learning that has/is taking place. Summative assessment is not always noticeable by the student as it is a continuous process; lecturers or assessors may observe participation and responses to class discussions and group work, a student’s response to question and answer sessions, participation in workshop practical and engagement with demonstrations. Each module is formally assessed through, for example, examination, open-book test, individual and group presentation, essay, observation of practice, assessment of course work e.g. art portfolio, written report, reflective practice and portfolios of evidence.

Students receive both formal and informal feedback. Formal feedback is through assessments, is usually in writing and given within 3 weeks following the submission date. However, some lecturers will provide group feedback, for example, following an examination they may choose to work through the exam paper in a tutorial. It should be noted that feedback is part of the ongoing learning cycle which is not limited to written feedback. Other forms of feedback include one-to-one meetings with a personal tutor, dissertation and project supervision meetings, a lecturer responding to learner questions or responses during topic or situation discussions.

Teaching and Learning

The learning environment and facilities include lecture theatres, classrooms, technology suites, laboratories and workshops, library and skills labs, art and photography studios, small group and quiet zones. Learning methods will vary according to the programme of study but will include lectures and group tutorials. In addition, seminars, field trips, work placements, role play or scenario activities, laboratory and workshop practical, demonstrations, guest lectures, discussions and debates all contribute to the learning experience to support the acquisition of subject specific skills and knowledge and the development of transferable and employment related skills.

What can I do next?

As well as the award of Foundation Degree in Early Childhood Studies awarded by Lancaster University, you will have achieved an innovative and flexible qualification which will allow you to progress onto a number of different career options, including;

  • BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies (Top Up)
  • EYTS (Early Years Teacher Status)

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"The main strength of provision on the FdA and BA (Hons) in Early Childhood Studies at Blackburn College is the dedication of the team and their constant drive to improve. They are a well-established team who work together and are openly critically reflective of their own practice."

External Examiners Report 2014/15
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