BA single honours top-up Early Childhood Education and Care 2018/19

Year of entry

Apply from September 2017. Come to an Open Day

The early-years workforce needs highly qualified and motivated graduates. Through this course you can build on a relevant foundation degree whilst in employment to gain full honours.

Under the guidance of expert tutors, you will gain skills and knowledge that will transform your practice, gaining an in-depth understanding of different social and cultural perspectives of children’s development and learning, their families, and their wider communities.

You will also be able to share knowledge and experiences by joining the Early Childhood Society and the Holistic Early Learning and Development Research Group, and have the opportunity to listen to expert guest speakers at South East England Early Childhood Research and Practice Association events.

You will explore areas including:

  • being, belonging and becoming
  • child development
  • inclusive practice
  • working with children and families
  • various perspectives on childhood and children’s lives.

This programme is suitable for Early Years Practitioners and others working with children (aged 0 – 8) within early years settings who hold a relevant foundation degree and wish to gain a full honours degree. The BA (Hons) Early Childhood Education and Care typically follows on from the Foundation Degree in Early Childhood Education and Care or another Foundation Degree with an early years focus. The course aims to further advance your skills, knowledge and understanding to lead and transform your own practice and that of others.

Clair Stevens (Senior Lecturer) also manages a Forest School and Nursery. They won Nursery of the Year 2014 in The Nursery World awards.

The early years workforce requires highly qualified and motivated graduates with knowledge and understanding of the multi-disciplinary nature of working with young children and their families, as well as an appreciation of the importance of quality partnerships with parents and other agencies. This degree makes a significant contribution to meeting the demands of the sector and it will provide you with a broad in-depth, theoretical underpinning of these issues as well as providing an opportunity to relate learning to work related practice.

A central theme of the course is the concept of ‘being, belonging and becoming’, not only in relation to children’s holistic development and learning, but also in relation to the journey that you will embark on when studying at Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU). For example, the state of ‘being’ values your experiences, knowledge and participation as the foundation of your professional identity; the notion of ‘belonging’ supports you and your feelings of inclusion and participation at University and in the wider early years community; and finally, the notion of ‘becoming’ supports your critical engagement with diverse perspectives on children, childhood and the wider political, societal and global issues influencing the lives of children and their families.
This course is suitable for Early Years Practitioners and others working with children (aged 0 – 5) within early years settings who hold a relevant foundation degree and wish to gain a full honours degree.

The confidence to work with other professionals on an equal footing has been a significant development in my own practice in my setting.

Whilst studying for the degree you will engage with theory and research drawn from an interdisciplinary approach. Specifically, you may draw on the fields of education, health and welfare, sociology, psychology, geography, history, children’s rights, law and justice, political and economic science, anthropology, social policy and philosophy. The course is embedded in a socio-cultural perspective of children, families and their wider communities and in particular the interrelatedness of children’s development and learning as culturally, as much as biologically, determined.

Support for learning is good, I enjoyed being able to take my interest in play through to the independent enquiry.

The following employment-based core modules are normally included in this course (20 credits each):

Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood

This module develops knowledge, skills and concepts through a critical understanding of the complexity of factors that impact upon the growth and development of young children. For example you might explore the debates and philosophies surrounding the education and care of young children in the UK and around the world. You will be encouraged to reflect upon the ways in which your own values influence your thinking and the impact on the choices you will make on behalf of children and families in your future careers.

Protection, Power and Participation

This course module provides you with opportunities to explore, analyse and critically evaluate the concepts of protection, power and participation in different contexts and from a range of perspectives. Through discussion you can explore and analyse the implications of these concepts for children, families, society, services and professionals.

Leadership and Management in Early Years

The focus of this module is to examine the key concepts, definitions, theories and philosophies relating to early childhood leadership and management and debate the relationships between theory, policy, research, and ethical practice in the context of leading and managing change. You will identify the key management and leadership styles, roles and theories alongside the challenges and constraints required for leadership and management in a range of contemporary early years professionals within a multi-professional framework.

Social Pedagogy

Knowledge and understanding of the purpose, scope and breadth of social pedagogy in the context of meeting the changing needs of the child is the focal point of this module. Theoretical perspectives of pedagogy will be examined within the context of leading practice and leading change. You will critically explore and examine creative approaches to social pedagogy and how this links to relationships with children, for example, through the key person approach, and quality frameworks that aim to enhance experiences and outcomes for children.

Early Childhood Independent Study (40 credits)

This module provides you with an opportunity to follow a sustained line of enquiry in an area of interest related to early childhood and to produce a high quality structured and relevant research project which may inform future career development.
One of the ‘core’ modules listed above may be replaced by an alternative module. These are listed below. Each year the Stakeholder Committee will review the curriculum offered and may decide to offer one of the following employment-based, likely optional modules:

Law, the Child and the Family

Traditionally the family has been regarded as a husband, wife and children. Family law is still very much involved in the dynamics of this traditional unit and policy-makers are concerned to preserve it. However, the statistics make it clear that we are undergoing a process of radical family restructuring away from marriage and family law has extended its boundaries to include other types of family unit. This module is designed to provide an insight into the legal intervention into different types of family structures and the impact of government policy.

Curriculum, Policy and Practice

The main aim of this module is to foster knowledge and understanding of curriculum models within an historical, political and ideological context. You will recognise the historical progression of government policies and statutory curriculum models and will have the opportunity to apply previous knowledge in developing a critical understanding of early years practice and encounter alternative European models and theoretical models of how children learn, to identify and examine what constitutes an appropriate pedagogical approach.

Values into Action

This module supports critical engagement with a principle-infused philosophy towards early childhood and in particular, their early childhood care and education experiences. You will reflect on and develop your knowledge and understanding about approaches to early childhood care and education that are embedded within a values framework, including an approach to inclusion that is concerned with inclusive values and a participatory democratic framework for early childhood care and education services.

Special Educational Needs

This module enables you to explore, in depth, an area of interest within Special Educational Needs. The module considers aspects such as, Autism, Speech and Language, ADHD, Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy and physical and sensory impairment alongside issues of disability, discrimination and equality in society, and particularly for young children in schools. It will also deliberate on the range of services available for young adults.

Leadership and Management in Early Years

This option seeks to involve students in identifying and analysing current research related to the role of the early years leader. Theoretical discussions on leadership styles, traits and characteristics will be explored. The challenges and constraints related to leading change will be presented and critically explored. Strategic and operational leadership within the context of establishing and sustaining a strong sense of vision and the necessary underpinning values will be the focus for learning and professional development.

Leading Effective Pedagogy

The aim of this module is to develop your critical knowledge and understanding of the purpose, scope and breadth of leading pedagogy in early childhood education and care settings. Theoretical perspectives of pedagogy will be critically examined within the contexts of leadership of others and your own personal practice, together with quality frameworks, in order to improve experiences and outcomes for children.

Leading Reflective Practice

The aim of this module is to enable you to critically examine the role the reflective practitioner that is central to practice in early childhood education and care. It is also a characteristic of effective Early Years leaders who use reflective thinking and behaviour in their leadership.

Leading Practice and Supporting Others

You are encouraged to draw on your experiences of working with children and their families and engage in critical reflection, strategic thinking and planning in relation to your own personal and career aspirations. The module will build on previous learning related to your values base, ethical decision making, and professionalism, continuing professional development and the importance of working with others towards common goals.

Global perspectives of Children’s Health

This module aims to give you the opportunity to analyse and critically evaluate children’s health issues both nationally and internationally. You will evaluate different aspects and contexts of health, including the social, political, environmental and economic contexts of different health systems.

On successful completion of this course, you may apply to study a postgraduate course including a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (as a preparation for teaching) or other postgraduate courses in a range of disciplines including Early Years, Social Work, Speech and Language Therapy.

A realisation that I am much more than I thought I could be, I never would have thought of postgraduate study until I studied here.

Tuition Fees for 2018/19 have not yet been finalised - please read the 2018/19 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding 2018/19 tuition fees and year on year fee increases.


The 2017/18 annual tuition fees for this course are:

Full-time £6,165 N/A
Part-time £4,625 N/A

Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

Please read the 2017/18 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding 2017/18 tuition fees and year on year fee increases

Further information

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any Library Fees and Fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

Course specific costs

DBS Check There is a charge made for this process of £52

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) Yes, if the trip contributes to the course (whether it is part of an optional or compulsory module), but not including food and drink. Yes, if the trip is not an essential part of the course but is offered as an enhancement or enrichment activity, or for a student’s personal development.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

The course consists of one year of study at year three (Level 6). You will typically attend one day per week and will study two 20 credit modules per term culminating in a 40 credit independent enquiry.

Teaching and learning may comprise of, but not be limited to lectures, seminars, workshop, personalised tutorials, guided learning, independent study and blended learning.

The teaching strategies and learning experiences reflect an increasing proportion of individualised and self-directed learning approaches.

Academic input

The teaching team comprises of lecturers, senior lecturers, programme directors and module leaders. Many staff also pursue their own continuing education from masters degrees to doctorates and PhD’s as well as pursuing their own research interests.

Staff represent a diverse set of professional backgrounds including Policing, Education, Social Care, Health, Psychology, local authority, third sector workers, commissioning services, Charities and other agencies. They provide a multidisciplinary and dynamic learning environment that includes specialist knowledge in the field.

All academics have a recognised teaching qualification for Higher Education and fellowship of the Higher Education Academy or are working towards one.

Surprising terms

It is a requirement of the course that you must be working (employed or voluntary) in a relevant setting for a minimum of 15 hours per week.

You will complete one summative assessment task for each 20 credit module (4,000 words). The assessment tasks aim to develop a range of practitioner characteristics through a varied approach and as such are likely to utilise the assessment methods which include: case studies, reports, reflective commentaries on focused observations, essays, presentations, appraisal of professional practice, analysis of issues which arise out of work experience/reading/seminars, self-evaluations, examinations, pedagogic documentation and artefacts.

Fact file

UCAS code

  • X235 Early Childhood Education and Care (BA Top Up)

Institutional code

  • C10


  • 1 year full-time (1 day a week at University)


  • September 2018

Entry requirements

  • A relevant Foundation Degree (or equivalent), GCSE English Language grade C (or equivalent), GCSE Mathematics grade C (or equivalent). To enter the teaching profession you will also need GCSE Science grade C.

    You must be working (employed or voluntary) in a relevant setting for a minimum of 15 hours per week if you intend to study full-time or 10 hours per week if you intend to study part-time.

    If you do not have English Language or Mathematics at GCSE grade C or above, you will be required to take and pass the University Equivalency tests for entry onto this programme.

    A current satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will be required. Where you do not already have this you can apply for this check through the University.



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Last edited: 12/04/2017 09:26:00