Supporting Children's Learning

(University Diploma in) Supporting Children's Learning 2017/18

Year of entry

This engaging and innovative work-based course is an ideal course for schools or consortiums, or a group of employers from different educational settings to choose to provide. It is aimed at employers who wish to continue the professional development of their support staff. Employers choose from a range of modules to offer a bespoke programme to their staff which will be tailored to their particular needs.

If as an individual potential student you are interested in this course, you should in the first instance contact either or

By studying and carrying out tasks in your workplace, you will be able to blend practice to theory, drawing on prior and current work-based skills and experience. You will develop and apply knowledge, skills and understanding to experience which will have a direct impact on your work in your educational setting.

The course enables you to gain an academic award to support your professional role. The University Diploma in Supporting Children’s Learning is also an opportunity for employers to identify a professional qualification for their teaching assistants.

This course has been designed as a professional qualification for teaching assistants. The University Diploma is directly related to your work and can provide access to the full Foundation degree followed by the BA (Hons) Childhood Studies top-up course.

“The university diploma allowed me to broaden my knowledge, mind and career prospects. I was initially anxious about whether I would cope with the work, but these worries were unfounded as the tutors are helpful, supportive and approachable. It was a positive experience and as a result I have continued my studies and am currently doing the foundation degree.”
Karin Blomfield

Study on the University Diploma draws from psychology, sociology, philosophy and history of education and examines how children learn from a range of perspectives. You will be offered the opportunity to reflect on a range of issues that affect the development and learning of children and young people. You will study three modules which will be chosen by your employer according to particular needs.

If you study for the University Diploma, it will support you in developing knowledge and understanding of how children learn in different contexts.

Other information

As this is a work-related qualification you are required to be in employment or work voluntarily in a child related setting for a minimum of 10 hours per week.

On the University Diploma, you will study the following core modules:

Growth and Development

An introduction to human development that will establish a framework for understanding growth, development and developmental stages. You will explore the effects of nature and nurture on development and will gain an insight into the ways in which theories of development explain and account for processes in development and difficulties experienced.

Language Development and its Place in Learning

An exploration of how human language develops, its principal features and the implications for providing a supportive learning environment when working with children and young people in a range of contexts.

Behaviour for Learning

The module aims to help you to develop an understanding of learning behaviour. You will consider the interdependence of social, emotional and cognitive factors that may have contributed to some pupils experiencing barriers to learning. Approaches and strategies that are likely to support motivation, access, participation and behaviour for learning in a variety of childhood learning contexts will be considered.

There are also a number of likely optional modules that you can choose from which include:

Practical Mathematics
Practical Science and Technology
The Emotional Experience of Learning
The Evolving Role of the Teaching Assistant
Additional Educational Needs
Parents and Children within the Family Context
Supporting English as an Additional Language
Counting and Number
Modern Foreign Languages
The Learner in Physical Education
Social, Emotional Behaviour Difficulties
Mentoring in the workplace

We continually review and where appropriate, revise the range of modules on offer to reflect changes in the subject and ensure the best student experience. We will inform applicants of any changes to the course structure before enrolment.

After successfully completing the University Diploma can progress to the Foundation Degree in Childhood Studies.


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

Full-time N/A N/A
Part-time £2,310 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

Travel to other sites Parking permits for students studying at Hall place are currently £26.25 per year
Entry exam There is a charge for equivalency tests, should you need to take them for entry on to this course.
DBS / Health Checks 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.

Teaching will be face-to-face at approved locations, one day per week. Most cohorts are taught during ‘twilight’ hours allowing you to study outside the normal working day.

The course has the equivalent of 30 taught hours, 50 hours of work-based learning with an expectation of 120 hours of independent research and study for each 20 credit module.

Academic input

There are currently 10 experienced staff who teach/deliver the course, all of whom are Senior Lecturers.

Surprising terms

If you find you are not able to work in a child-related setting for the minimum hours required you do not fulfil the requirements of the course and may not be able to complete the course.

This course is subject to special regulations.

You will be assessed through a range of methods, including individual presentations, poster presentations, resource design, case studies and essays. There is no formal examination assessment.

Accordingly, assessment procedures will take account of not only your newly-acquired knowledge and skills, but also the process of developing skills and the ability to apply such knowledge and skills in the world of work.

Applications for this course can be completed online.

For further information, please read our guidance on how to apply online .

Further information about the application process and what you will need to do to prepare.

Your application will be acknowledged by Admissions once it is received. Normally, applicants will be accepted from the information on the application form and employer agreement through the Stakeholder Learning Agreement signed by the employer.

If you do not meet the entry requirements, the Programme Director will invite you for an interview at the University.

If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact:

The Admissions Enquiry Team 

Alternatively you may contact:

Jane Lingham
Programme Administrator
Tel: 01227 782781

Fact file


  • 6-12 months

Entry requirements

  • You will need GCSE English grade C or above (or equivalent) and an A Level (or equivalent qualification).

    If you do not have English at GCSE grade C or above you will be required to take and pass the University Equivalency tests for entry onto this course. There is a charge for this test.

    You will need to be employed (paid or voluntary) working with children or young people in an educational setting for at least 10 hours per week.

    In addition, you should have at least 6 months experience of working in a paid or voluntary capacity, prior to entry, with children or young people in an educational setting, with active support of an employer, who must sign the application form and the learning agreement.

    A current satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will also be required before you start the course.


  • Other



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Last edited: 24/07/2017 12:33:00