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BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies

Our Early Childhood degree will develop your skills in the study of childhood from psychological, historical, cultural, sociological, social policy, and philosophical viewpoints. We’ll support the development of your knowledgeable questioning and your emergence as an independent thinker.

The programme aims to present multiple perspectives and to draw on a range of significant disciplines, such as history, philosophy, education, health, welfare, sociology and social policy, cultural studies, the law, and political and economic perspectives. This enables students to understand and analyse the processes that shape childhood and children’s lives in a way that fosters critical evaluation, and which includes an understanding of the contested and changing nature of the concept of childhood, ethical principles and children’s rights.

Student view

Daniel Luckman
Early Years
The experience will develop your skills in the study of childhood from psychology, historical, cultural, sociological, social policy and philosophy viewpoints and introduces you to national and international perspectives.
Samantha
Year 3 BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies

I knew I wanted to work with children but wasn't sure which path to take. This course has given me greater understanding about the holistic needs of a child and their development than I might have gained on a teaching course.

Koral-Lee
Year 3 BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies

I felt I would be able to develop and grow in independence here. Staff members are all very approachable, reassuring and supportive. There are so many events held throughout the week to make friends and meet new people.

Amy
Year 3 BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies

I chose Chichester purely because of the amazing sense of the community that you are welcomed to be a part of. Chichester is a wonderful place to learn, study and live. The support and guidance you are shown is brilliant. Chichester offers so many experiences and opportunities including being part of some excelling sports teams and extra-curricular activities that instantly make university fun and exciting.

Course content

Our BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies will thoroughly prepare you to work with young children aged up to eight years of age. We’ll provide you with an understanding of the diverse contexts in which children develop and learn, You’ll analyse the theory, philosophies and value systems that underpin working with and caring for children, and their families/carers.

On this multidisciplinary course, you’ll critically explore the many perspectives of childhood and children, including child development, children's health, early years leadership, the sociology of children and families, safeguarding, play and creativity, and therapeutic play opening up your opportunities for further specialist study which would help you enter into a wide range of careers.

Our facilities

Our facilities content

Over the past few years, we’ve redeveloped both of our campuses so that you have the best facilities available for your degree. We pride ourselves on the quality of the learning environment we can offer our students.

At the Bishop Otter campus there is an integrated approach to the provision of learning resources and support.  We offer a substantial collection of books, journals and other materials to help you further your research. A range of study areas for group and quiet study including Wi-Fi areas for laptop use are available, or you can use our open access PC and Mac areas.  We use an electronic learning environment with an expanding portfolio of online library resources from anywhere at any time.



The Learning Resource is the hub of the learning environment.  It has two upper floors of library resources, one for silent study and one for quiet study, both of which have recently been refurbished. On the ground floor, you’ll find the Support and Information Zone, Media Centre, Otter Gallery, Costa Coffee and a variety of IT resources.

The Bishop Otter LRC also offers:

  • 130 open access PC workstations
  • 45 Apple iMacs
  • Ample printing facilities
  • Netbooks available on loan
  • Professional editing suites
  • Media loans counter
  • Wi-Fi and plug points throughout

Where this can take you

Jobs directly related to your degree:

  • Early years teacher or Early Years Practitioner - fosters and develops the abilities, social skills and understanding of children aged three to five, focusing on optimum child development and preparation for a successful transition to primary school education.
  • Primary school teacher - develops schemes of work and lesson plans in line with curriculum objectives, facilitating learning by establishing a relationship with pupils and organising learning resources and the classroom learning environment.
  • Special educational needs teacher - teaches children with emotional, behavioural or learning difficulties at one or more stages.
  • Learning mentor - provides a complementary service to teachers and other staff, addressing the needs of children who require assistance in overcoming barriers to learning.
  • Social worker - works with young people experiencing a variety of difficulties. Experience and/or professional qualification is usually required before embarking on social work in a normal capacity.
  • Child psychotherapist and counsellor - works with children suffering from a range of problems, including serious psychological disturbances and behavioural problems. Training in psychotherapy is required for this role.
  • Educational psychologist - applies psychological theory, research and techniques to help children or young people who may have learning, behavioural, social or emotional problems or difficulties.
  • Paediatric nurse - cares for sick children, advising and supporting them and their families.
  • Speech and language therapist - works closely with people of all ages, including children, with varying degrees of speech, language or swallowing problems.

Jobs where your degree would be useful:

  • Community development worker - aims to empower communities by developing the skills required to regain control over and improve quality of life, working with individuals, families or whole communities to facilitate the process.
  • Museum education officer - responsible for realising the potential of museum collections as learning resources for visitors and the wider community, including children.
  • Youth worker - promotes the personal, educational and social development of young people aged between 13 and 19.
  • Careers adviser/personal adviser - provides information, advice and guidance to help people make realistic choices about education, training and work.

Further Study:

You could also decide to continue with your studies and could consider the following:

  • PGCE Primary
  • MA Pedagogy
  • MA Social Work
  • MA Advance Professional Practice

Work placements

You will have the option to undertake two practice placements to develop elements of your professional practice. The placements are mapped to the Early Years Educator standards (2013) and to fulfill the Department for Education’s full and relevant requirements should you hold Maths and English GCSE at grade C or above. Please see the Early Years qualification list.

Indicative modules

In the first year of the course you will study eight compulsory introductory modules:

  • Introduction to Childhood
  • Child Development (0-8)
  • Play and Creativity
  • Safeguarding
  • Working with babies & toddlers
  • Inspiring Approaches
  •  

Year Two

In the second year you complete two core modules per semester and select one optional module each semester:

  • Early Years Approaches
  • Starting Research in Early Years
  • Early Years Leadership (option)
  • Children’s Health and Wellbeing (option)
  • Reflective Practice Placement 1
  • Parenting partnerships
  • Understanding behaviour (option)
  • International Perspectives of Childhood (option)

Year Three

In your final year you have core and option modules and complete a research project which spans the academic year:

  • IP 1 (double module S1 and S2)
  • Reflective Practice Placement 2
  • Therapeutic Play (option)
  • Learning, Teaching and Caring in Adventure Education (option)
  • Special Needs and Disability
  • Criminology and Childhood (option)
  • Children’s Literature, Film and the Multimedia (option)

Teaching and assessment

Overview of teaching strategies

The Early Childhood sector is rapidly changing and therefore it is vitally important that we listen to government and employers as well to make certain that you, the students, have the very best experience that will serve you well in your chosen careers.

All members of the teaching team are practitioners with a wide range of experience as well as accomplished academics.  We seek to bring new research alongside established theory into the classroom through a variety of blended methods including direct teaching, seminars, problem solving, activity based learning, adventure education as well as using up to date technology to engage with you across platforms.

Options 

We are well aware of the importance of offering you choice in your learning, partly to engage with your interests, but also to make certain that we are offering those skills that employers need.  On the BA in Early Childhood Studies we now offer options in Year Two – Leadership and Management or Children’s Health and Wellbeing, Understanding Behaviour or International Perspectives of Childhood. Furthermore, in Year Three – Therapeutic Play and Learning, Teaching and Caring in Adventure Education, Criminology and Childhood and Children’s Literature and the Media.  These options allow you to design and follow your academic and developmental route through the programme, supporting you to develop as individuals, but also greatly increasing prospects of employability.

Placements

Employability and supporting you to make the best career choices is central to our activity within the programme and therefore the two placements that you will have – in Year Two and Year Three are very important to feed your experience and learning as well as helping to make choices for the future.  You will be encouraged to find a suitable placement in an early years setting from our placement database and we will assist you to do this.  Each placements lasts for twenty days spread over the relevant semester.  

Assessments 

It is important that our assessments are designed to meet the various learning needs of students.  By this we want to make certain that individual students have the opportunity to achieve their potential and for this reason we offer a variety of assessment methods that include presentations, assignments, exams, academic posters and placement portfolios.   This is welcomed and encouraged by the student voice. We also encourage our students to publish their work and past students have had articles accepted in publications such as Early Years Educator.

Additional Costs

Include Additional Costs: 

Additional Costs

DBS Costs

DBS check

BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies training applicants are required to have an enhanced Disclosure Barring Service check which needs to be paid for before the start of the course. This will cost £52.20.

Places still available

Codes

UCAS code: 
X310
College Code: 
C58

Course length

3 Years
Full Time