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Young children colouring and playing in a nursery


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Institution C58


Bishop Otter campus (Chichester)

3 Years, Full Time

Top 30
UK University
overall satisfaction for Early Childhood Studies
Top 25
best university in the UK
1. Guardian University Guide 2021 | 2. National Student Survey 2021 | 3. National Student Survey 2021

Entry Requirements and Fees

Typical Offer (individual offers may vary):

  • UCAS Tariff points: 96 – 112 (A levels or combination with AS / EPQ / BTEC/ Cambridge Technical)
  • A levels: BBC - CCC
  • BTEC/Cambridge Technical: DMM - MMM
  • CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Early Years Education and Care (Early Years Educator): B/C 
  • GCSEs: English language and mathematics C/4 or above (or Level 2 Functional Skills Literacy and Numeracy)
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass 
  • International Baccalaureate: 26 - 28 points 
  • Enhanced DBS check required


2021/22 UK fee: £9,250

2021/22 International fee: £14,050

For further details about fees, please see our Tuition Fee page.

For further details about international scholarships, please see our Scholarships page.

Student view

Kat, BA (Hons) Early Childhood student

I enjoyed how practical our lectures were. We went to the forest schools and had a go at different activities. It allowed us to get in the mindset of the child and fully understand how it can help learn. I found the lecturers so supportive. If I ever had a question, I knew there was someone to go to ask for help or the check I was doing something right. It felt like a family away from home, which provided a safe, trustworthy environment where you can provide personal experiences.


The module choices on the course meant I always had something I was interested in and engaged me which kept University fresh and exciting. The hands on activities during lectures made them so much more fun .. sensory experiences, forest schools, Story sacks .. the list is endless! Every tutor is so keen on keeping you interested and making the theory you learn easily transferable into the real world. 

Course content

100% satisfaction for Early Childhood Studies (National Student Survey 2021)

Course overview

Our BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies degree focuses on work with young children up to the age of eight. You’ll be guided through an exciting range of modules that are specifically designed to increase your understanding of children and to develop your practice skills and knowledge. You will develop your effectiveness as a skilled Early Years practitioner. Modules in Child Development, Children’s Behaviour, Safeguarding and Special Educational Needs and Disability will increase your confidence and ability to work skilfully and sensitively with children and their families.

Why study this course?

  • This wide-ranging degree encourages you to discover all areas of childhood
  • It is a recognised qualification by the Department for Education
  • Opportunities in Year 2 and 3 to specialise in what interests you
  • Gain practical experience in different early years settings making this degree full and relevant
  • You'll learn from a dedicated and highly-skilled team 
  • Opportunity to complete an international placement in your second year

Who is this degree for?

Do you know that you want to work with children but haven’t yet decided what area of Early Years to go into? This degree will give you the chance to experience all areas of Early Childhood Studies to give a better foundation for choosing which career path you wish to take.

Linking Theory to Practice

We believe it is invaluable to link theory that you learn on the degree, with practice. Alongside the placement opportunities on this course, we’ve introduced an optional qualification element to this course to enhance your employability prospects.

Graduate Practitioner Competencies has been integrated into the degree. It involves an extra placement in Year 3 and means you leave with not only an academic but practical Level 6 Early Childhood Graduate Practitioner Competencies certificate. 

Take a look at our Childhood brochure.

Our facilities

We’ve developed both of our campuses to have the best facilities available for your degree. We pride ourselves on the quality of the learning environment we can offer our students.

Learning Resource Centre

Learning Resource Centre facilities

Our Learning Resource Centre is at the heart of the campus.  It hosts:

  • A modern library service with areas for quiet and silent study on both floors 
  • A range of study areas for group study
  • Over 80 open access PC and Mac stations
  • Wi-Fi areas for laptop use
  • A substantial collection of books, journals and other materials to help you further your research
  • Online library resources you can access from anywhere at any time
  • Costa Coffee
  • Also situated in the Learning Resource Centre is the Support and Information Zone (SIZ) to help with any enquiries while at university
  • At SIZ, there's an equipment loans centre offerings laptops, tablets and other electronic devices for short and long-term loans

The local area

The local area surrounding the University of Chichester's main Campus including Chichester Cathedral, Chichester Town Centre, The South Downs and West Wittering Beach

It’s important to love where you live and study and the local area surrounding the University has so much to offer. With the seaside town, historic city, rolling countryside and stunning beaches, there’s plenty to explore

Where this can take you


With this degree, you can pursue a career as an Early Years Practitioner. You’ll foster and develop 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. Some possible roles may include:

  • Nursery Manager
  • Play Worker
  • Outreach Worker with family centres
  • Community Development Worker

Further study

Many of our students go on to further study at the University. Here are some of the main progression routes we offer after graduating from the BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies degree.

Work placements

Placements are assessed which means you will exit the course with the equivalent of the DfE full and relevant requirements for Early Years practice. We have incorporated the option of the Graduate Practitioner Competencies into your placements, which gives allows you to finish the course as a Graduate Practitioner.

On this course, you could gain a total of 80 days of work-based placements. You’ll get the chance to attend three different registered organisational settings to gain a mix of experience. You’ll also gain the opportunity to work with babies, 3-5 and 5-7 year olds.

The placements gained in Year’s 1 and 2 (Level 4 and 5) will be counted as ‘full and relevant’ which means with this degree, you will be counted at Level 3 in staff: child ratios.

  • Year One – 25 days
  • Year Two – 30 days
  • Year Three –25 days – Graduate Practitioner Competencies (optional placement)

If you choose to take this module, you will receive a separate certificate stating that you have been awarded the Early Childhood Graduate Practitioner Competencies.

Indicative modules

Year One

In the first year you will complete six compulsory introductory modules plus the placement module:

Child Development

This module introduces students to the nature of developmental psychology and encourages a critical understanding of psychological theories in relation to children’s development.

Preparing for Professional Practice

The module will introduce you to how theory is linked and applied to effective Early Years practice. The topics covered in this module will be a precursor to your first practice placement.

Safeguarding Children and Integrated Working

The module will enable you to develop knowledge and understanding of the safeguarding agenda and underpinning legislation. You will learn how to apply this in practice with children, parents and colleagues.

Children’s Rights and Policy

This module introduces you to the development of social policy and children’s rights as applied to a range of Early Years provision. It engages with ideological debates to locate current early years policies and initiatives in their historical, social, political and cultural context.

Play, Creativity and Expressive Arts

This module aims to provide you with an understanding of the different perspectives of play in relation to child development and learning. It will explore the influence of key pioneers on contemporary concepts of play and make links between theory and effective practice in the early years sector.

The Developing Practitioner (Placement)

This module aims to enable you to gain assessed experience in a setting which is relevant to early years practice. 


Year Two 

In semester one you will complete two core modules and one optional module.  In semester two you will complete three modules plus the placement module:

Children’s Health and Well-Being

The module aims to provide you with a knowledge and understanding of the issues that surround health and well-being as they affect children and young people into adulthood.

Rocking The Cradle

This module aims to explore conception, pregnancy, the birth process and the care of babies up to the age of two years.

Curriculums Around The World

This module will focus on a range of early years curriculums from around the world (for example Reggio Emilia, Te Whāriki, Montessori, High Scope and Steiner) and consider how these are delivered and the impact of their underpinning philosophies.

Childhood in Crisis: Global Perspectives

The module aims to explore international issues in Early Years Education and Care such as globalization and migration and the impact it has on children and their families.

Special Educational Needs and Disability

The central aim of this module is to develop a critical understanding of the issues that surround special educational needs and disability (SEND) in society and early years settings, with particular reference to government policy initiatives and legislation.

Preparation for Independent Project

This module aims to prepare you for conducting empirical research for your Independent Project in year 3, as well as promoting an understanding of research in the early years.

Working with Families

This module will enable you to explore the reciprocal relationships that need to exist between the early years setting, the child and their family.  It will encourage you to develop a detailed understanding of the importance of partnership working for the child and their family to promote inclusion and collaboration.

Understanding Behaviour

This module will enable you to develop knowledge and critical understanding of the different theoretical perspectives on children’s behaviour in the early years.

The Reflective Practitioner (Placement)

This module aims to enable you to gain assessed experience in a setting which is relevant to early years practice building on the practice that you developed in year one.


Year Three

In your final year, you will complete a research project (IP) which spans the academic year. You will also complete one core and one optional module in each semester.  There is also the option of an additional graduate practitioner placement in semester one.

Independent Project

The independent project is designed to engage you in a longer-term and analytical piece of research on a topic relevant to Early Childhood Studies.  The module includes a focus on the research process, including guidance on research design, writing a literature review, application of methodological approach and method(s) used, ethical issues, data collection and analysis.

Leading Professional Practice

This module aims to introduce you to the key factors that affect strategies for leading and managing change in your work or volunteering environment. You will develop the skills to reflect critically on aspects of your professional practice linking to leading and managing theory and to demonstrate how you can develop your practice to better provide for the needs of the staff, children and families you are working with.

Therapeutic Play

This module aims to explore and critically analyse the centrality of play in enabling children to make sense of the world around them and their place within that world, especially when experiencing trauma.

The Digital Child

The module introduces you to the digital experiences of childhood, and the effects of technology on children in a fast-changing world.

Children, Stories and the Media

This module uses children’s stories and the media to explore current and past constructs of childhood.  Specific examples of these media are used to consider the wider social, cultural and educational issues that surround their production and consumption.

Crime and Childhood

This module aims to explore aspects of criminal law and offending in relation to childhood. Case Studies will be used to illustrate how criminal law and childhood is given particular significance, including use of media coverage.

Adventure Education

This module enables you to gain experience in innovative and adventurous environments in which children can develop, learn and play such as Forest School and Beach School.  You will examine the theoretical, psychological, physical and social processes and benefits for children and early years professionals and teachers that come with activities away from conventional environments.

Graduate Practitioner (Optional Placement)

This module builds on theory from taught modules in the programme and practical placements at both Levels 4 and 5. It gives students opportunities in relevant settings to achieve the Early Childhood Graduate Practitioner Competencies.

International English Studies

Include International English Studies: 

Teaching and assessment

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. 


Our assessments must be 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 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.

We strongly suggest that all students sign up for the Disclosure and Barring Service update service for which there is a small annual charge, this makes the DBS portable both during and after the degree. Failure to sign up for the update service might require the student to gain a further enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check which will incur additional costs.


Are you interested in this course and would like to learn more? Get in touch with our Admissions Team for more information.

You can also find out more on our Childhood Instagram page.

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