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Early Years BA (Hons)

  • Level(s) of Study: Undergraduate
  • UCAS Code(s): X310
  • Start Date(s): September 2022
  • Duration: Three years full-time
  • Study Mode(s): Full-time
  • Campus: Clifton Campus
  • Entry Requirements:
    More information

Introduction:

Do you want to work with young children? Do you want to make a difference to the lives of children, families and communities? If the answer is yes, a career as an early years professional could be for you.

Why choose this course?

  • 97% of our education and teacher training graduates are employed or engaged in further study six months after graduating (DLHE full-time undergraduate leavers 2016-17).
  • We are supported by over 600 partnerships with local schools, colleges and organisations, ensuring our courses meet the demands of the competitive graduate market.
  • Many of our students choose to take a placement overseas. Recent placements have been available with a cricket project in Namibia, an international school in Brunei, an orphanage in Mombasa and an English language project in Thailand.
  • If you complete your undergraduate degree, you are guaranteed an interview for a PGCE Primary teacher training course at NTU during your final undergraduate year (terms and conditions apply)

You will benefit from:

  • Specialist modules developing your transferable and employability skills
  • You'll gain vital work experience and put your knowledge into practice through blocked periods of placement in each year of the course.
  • You'll be equipped to work with children aged 0 to 5 in early years settings.
  • Excellent facilities and experienced and enthusiastic tutors.

What you’ll study

This three-year course will equip you with the necessary expertise to become a successful early years professional, focusing on young children aged 0-5 years. You will become a research-informed and reflective practitioner, as well as an expert in the policy and practice in the early years and the care and education of young children.

You will also study leadership and multi-agency working in the early years phase and undertake a piece of practitioner research.

Responding to the Early Years Workforce Strategy, we have built this degree qualification to meet the Early Years Educator criteria required for those wanting to become Early Years Educators. In addition, the course will also provide the opportunity for students to achieve Early Years Teacher Status, for those students who are wishing to specialise as leading educators, with children aged birth to five. Achieving either or both of these awards will increase the employability for successful graduates. It also creates opportunity for further study in Higher Education.

Placements

You'll gain vital work experience and put your knowledge into practice through blocked periods of placement in each year of the course. These take place in a range of settings including the private, voluntary and independent sector, as well as schools, giving you experience across the whole 0-5 age range.

Your future

This course will equip you to work with children aged 0-5 in early years settings.

*the title of this award is subject to change due to an ongoing government consultation.

Masters credits

A unique key feature of the BA (Hons) Early Years degree is that it has been designed to develop and challenge academic skills for those students who are considering pursuing postgraduate study. There is an opportunity to achieve 40 Masters credits, by opting to submit the final year assignment ‘Leading Early Years Pedagogy and Practice’ at Masters level.

The Developing Early Years Professional

You will explore what it means to be a professional working in the early years sector and look at the professional attributes which you will develop through the course.

The Developing Young Child at Play

You will be introduced to key areas of early child development, which will include cognitive, social, emotional and physical, speech language, and communication development along with neurological development.

Introduction to Planning

You will explore the observation, assessment and planning cycle using a variety of observational techniques and assessment methods. It will support your understanding of formative and summative assessment, tracking children progress to plan their next steps and shape young children’s learning opportunities.

Working Safely in Partnership

You will gain knowledge in the current legislation, policies and procedures that promote children rights and keep them safe from harm.

The Child in Society

You will begin to develop an understanding of factors that shape current legislation and policy, influencing the concept of childhood. You will explore children’s rights and their effect on the pedagogy of play, examining local, national and global perspectives of childhood.

The Emerging Professional Early Years Practitioner

The aims of this module is to encourage you to think about possible approaches to higher learning and develop your skills for efficient and effective study and support.

Early Years Introduction to Placement

This module is delivered over three terms and allows you to gather a portfolio of evidence to show how you have developed your professional skills to become Early Years Educator.

Effective and Reflective Spaces to Play and Learn

Explore research methodologies and ethical practices that seek to involve the voice of the child through participatory methods, taking account of SEND and inclusive practice.

Inclusive Practice

You will develop an understanding of how to work with a range of children with differing needs and potential barriers to learning and development.

Planning for Progress in the Enabling Environment

This module will support you to effectively deliver the Early Years Framework, facilitate babies and young children’s progress and development through effective planned experiences.

Working with Parents and Partners

You’ll explore the importance of effective communication with parents and / or carers and developing professional skills and knowledge in order to engage and positively interact with parents and / or carers.

Enhancing your Professional Standards

During Year Two and Year Three, you’ll gather evidence within a portfolio to be assessed against the Early Years Educator Criteria.

The Reflective Early Years Practitioner

The aims of this module are support your development of academic and professional skills. It will focus on your professional work-base practice and your professional development.

Developing Early Childhood practitioner competences (optional)

The aims of this module develop your competences against Early Childhood Graduate Competences.

Researching and Reflecting on Early Years Practice

You’ll consider epistemological and methodological approaches, ethical issues within research, explore a field of literature related to your own research question, and understand how to interpret, reflect and analyse on literature and data.

The Beginnings of Literacy and Mathematics: Laying the Foundations for Children’s Development in Mathematics and English

You will learn to critically explore approaches to the teaching of early literacy and mathematics.

Leading Early Years Pedagogy and Practice

You will critically study, and apply, a range of leadership and management skills, using relevant academic literature and practice experiences. This module will enable you to reflect on your professional practice when leading early years practice and pedagogy.

Forest Schools

You will experience a range of open-ended activities outdoors, reflecting on the Forest Schools ethos, as well as national and international perspectives.

Being a professional and reflective early years practitioner

The aims of this module is designed to support your further academic and early years professional practice skills. It explores your graduate skills as an Early Years practitioner.

The competent Early Childhood professional  

The aims of this module develop your competences against Early Childhood Graduate Competences.

Further information on what you'll study

Guaranteed interview scheme: teacher-training

One of the benefits of the course is the broad knowledge and experience you will gain. This experience may lead you to consider teaching, even if you have not considered this as a career before. If you complete your degree, you are guaranteed an interview for a PGCE Primary teacher-training course at NTU during your third undergraduate year (subject to places being available).

Terms and conditions apply:

  • Applications will be withdrawn and not be progressed to interview stage once all places are filled on relevant courses
  • Interviews are subject to you meeting the essential entry criteria for the PGCE course at the time of application, such as GCSE requirements, degree grade
  • An interview does not guarantee an offer to study on the course.

How you’re taught

We've introduced flexible and innovative ways of learning, teaching and assessment to develop your study skills and understanding of the integration of theory and policy to practice. You'll take part in lectures, seminar discussions, tutorials and placements in ways that promote interaction.

Contact hours

  • Year 1 lectures/seminars/workshops (21%), independent study (42%) and placements (37%)
  • Year 2 lectures/seminars/workshops (22%), independent study (43%) and placements (35%)
  • Year 3 lectures/seminars/workshops (19%), independent study (59%) and placements (22%)

How you’re assessed

  • Year 1 coursework (100%)
  • Year 2 coursework (100%)
  • Year 3 coursework (100%)

Careers and employability

Your career development

The following illustrates possible careers areas you could enter using your early years subject knowledge.

Jobs directly related to early years Jobs where early years would be useful
Early years practitioner
Nursery practitioner
Children’s centre practitioner
Classroom assistant
Nursery Manager
Learning support assistant
Family support practitioner
Non QTS Primary school teacher – particularly those including early years strands        
Behaviour mentor
Events coordinator
Management trainee
Museum education officer

Education graduates generally enter jobs working directly with children or young people, in a support capacity. Other roles in an educational setting, but with less direct contact with children or young people, include administration roles in education. There are posts available in other public sector organisations, such as local government, the health service and the civil service.

Links with industry

We involve industry experts in our courses in a number of ways.

  • We consult with employers when we design and update our courses.
  • We ensure you are prepared to meet the demands of the workplace by continually checking the currency and validity of our courses with employers.
  • You will have the opportunity to have a work placement (if not already in paid or voluntary employment).
  • Employers may input directly into your course through guest lectures, projects, and other work-related activities.

Entry requirements

What are we looking for?

  • A-levels – BCC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or CACHE
  • 104 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths grade 4.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.

Other requirements

You will also need to complete:

Other qualifications and experience

We consider equivalent qualifications and combinations, please see UCAS course search for details and use our calculator to help you work out how many UCAS points your qualifications relate to.

We may also consider credits achieved at other universities and your work/life experience through an assessment of prior learning. This may be for year one entry, or beyond the beginning of a course where applicable, for example, into year 2. Our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy outlines the process and options available for this route.

Contextual offers

As well as assessing your application and qualifications, we use contextual data and information to make offers for this course. Depending on your circumstances, we may make you an offer up to two grades below the standard entry criteria. Find out how we assess your application.

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions and Enquiries Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

What are we looking for?

For this course, you will need one of the following:

  • A-levels – BCC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or CACHE
  • 104 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths grade 4; and
  • GSCE Science grade 4 will be required by Year 2 if you want to specialise in the Early Years Teacher route.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.

Other requirements

You will also need to complete:

International qualifications

We accept qualifications from all over the world – check yours here:

Undergraduate preparation courses (Foundation)

If you don’t yet meet our entry requirements, we offer Foundation courses through our partner Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC), based on our City Campus:

English language entry requirements

You can meet our language requirements by successfully completing our pre-sessional English course for an agreed length of time, or by submitting the required grade in one of our accepted English language tests, such as IELTS:

Advanced standing (starting your undergraduate degree in year 2 or 3)

You may be able to start your undergraduate course in year 2 or 3 based on what you have studied before.  This decision would be made in accordance with our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy.

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

Fees and funding

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there’s no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding pages will answer all your questions.

Additional Costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

Library books

Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

Field trips

All essential field trip costs will be included in your course fees. There may be the opportunity to take part in optional field trips, which do incur additional costs.

Placements

If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.

Print and copy costs

The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Students may have the opportunity to progress to higher levels of Forest School training. If so, they will be expected to pay any additional training and accreditation fees.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service on telephone +44 (0)115 848 2494.

Tuition fees are payable for each year that you are at the University. The level of tuition fees for the second and subsequent years of your undergraduate course may increase in line with inflation and as specified by the UK government.

Scholarships

We offer scholarships of up to 50% of your tuition fee. You can apply for your scholarship when you have an offer to study at NTU.

Living costs

Get advice on the cost of living as an international student in Nottingham and how to budget:

Paying fees

Find out about advanced payments, instalment plan options and how to make payments securely to the University:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

How to apply

Ready to join us? Then apply as soon as you can. Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow the instructions for applying. Make sure you check the entry requirements above carefully before you do.

Writing your application and personal statement

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. So include all of your qualifications and grades, including resits or predicted grades.

Your personal statement is a really important part of your application. It’s your chance to convince us why we should offer you a place! You’ve got 4,000 characters to impress us. Make sure you use them to show how your skills and qualities are relevant to the course(s) you’re applying for. For more hints and tips, take a look at our page on how to write a good personal statement.

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU on our Your Application page. Good luck with your application!

Diversity of our students

We are committed to promoting a diverse and representative body of education and teacher trainees. We welcome applications from under-represented groups, such as male applicants, applicants from BME communities, mature applicants and those with disabilities.

All applicants welcome

We welcome applications from prospective students with a range of qualifications and experience, and all are assessed on an individual basis. Mature applicants who do not meet the standard entry criteria can still be considered providing they have relevant experience to compliment any qualifications. All applicants will need to apply through UCAS.

You can apply for this course through UCAS. If you are not applying to any other UK universities, you can apply directly to us on our NTU applicant portal.

Application advice

Apply early so that you have enough time to prepare – processing times for Student visas can vary, for example.  After you've applied, we'll be sending you important emails throughout the application process – so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Writing your personal statement

Be honest, thorough, and persuasive – we can only make a decision about your application based on what you tell us:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

The University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.