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Year of Entry 2021/22

Early Years

Develop your knowledge and skills on this work-based foundation degree.

Everything you need to know...

What is the fee? Home: £9,250 per year
International/EU: £13,995 per year
How long will I study? 2 Years
Where will I study? City Campus
What are the entry requirements? 104 UCAS Points
What is the UCAS code? U8H7
When do I start? September 2021

University of the Year for Teaching Quality, The Sunday Times Good Univeristy Guide 2020

Course summary

  • Develop your knowledge and understanding of theory and research which underpins effective practice within the early years.
  • Learn about current effective practice with babies, toddlers and young children.
  • Study alongside your work, allowing you to apply what you learn directly to your career.

This sector-endorsed course combines theoretical lectures with hands-on work, allowing you to gain a foundation degree while working in practice.

Student View

Watch student Samantha King talk about what it’s like to study on this course.

How you learn

Your lecturer's view
Watch course leader Sarah Rawding talk about this course.

The foundation degree is a full-time course but you only attend university one afternoon or evening a week, and engage in online and self-directed learning activities, allowing you to fit your studies around your other commitments.

You must be working or in a long-term voluntary position within an early years setting during the course, as the emphasis is on work-based learning.

You learn through

  • lectures and seminars
  • group activities
  • reflecting on experiences
  • self-directed study

Course leaders and tutors

Sarah Rawding
Sarah Rawding
Senior Lecturer In Early Years

My main teaching interests are focused on the holistic development of children within the early years and supporting practitioners to become confident and reflective … Read more

Applied learning

Live projects

You will apply what you learn in the classroom to your current work, enabling you to build on your skills in practice. You also examine your own academic and professional development. This ensures that you can reflect on new learning and that it is embedded into your everyday practice.

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Future careers

This course leads onto

  • further study in early years, such as BA top up leading to postgraduate study and QTS
  • career progression in schools, nurseries and childminding

Where will I study?

You study at City Campus through a structured mix of online lessons and face-to-face teaching with access to digital and online resources to support your learning.

City Campus

City Campus is located in the heart of Sheffield, within minutes of the train and bus stations.

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Entry requirements

All students

UCAS points

  • 104

This must include least two A levels or equivalent BTEC National or CACHE qualifications. For example:

  • BCC at A Level.
  • DMM in BTEC Extended Diploma.
  • A combination of qualifications, which may include AS Levels, EPQ and general studies.

You can find information on making sense of UCAS tariff points here and use the UCAS tariff calculator to work out your points.


  • English Language or English Literature at grade C or 4
  • Mathematics at grade C or 4

We may accept GCSE equivalents.

All applicants must have at least one years full time equivalent experience working in the sector and level 2 qualifications in Literacy and Numeracy.

Applications are welcomed from experienced practitioners, working in settings who have vocational level three qualifications such as BTEC or Cache diploma.

Where applicants can demonstrate substantial experience in the sector we may accept a lower level of achievement at level 3 (such as NVQ). Whilst on the course you must be able to fulfil the academic demands including information/communications technology requirements. All applicants must have at least one years full time equivalent experience working or volunteering in the sector and level 2 qualifications in Literacy and Numeracy. A requirement of the course is that you are working in either a paid or voluntary role within an early years setting for at least two days per week for the duration of the course.

If English is not your first language you need an IELTS score of 6.0 or above, with a minimum score of 5.5 in each skill.

Please note the University will only admit students who are aged 18 at the point of enrolment.

Additional information for EU/International students

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page. You can also watch a video guide on how to apply.

For details of English language entry requirements (IELTS), please see the information for 'All students'.


Module and assessment information for future years is displayed as currently validated and may be liable to change. When selecting electives, your choices will be subject to the core requirements of the course. As a result, selections may be limited to a choice between one of two or more specified electives in some instances.

Year 1

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Children's Development Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Enabling Environments In The Early Years Credits: 20 Assessment: Practical
Module: Health And Well Being Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Outdoor Play In The Early Years Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Play And The Practitioner Role Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Reflective Practice Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework

Final year

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Children's Development 2 Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Economic Well Being Credits: 20 Assessment: Practical
Module: Inclusive Practice Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Safeguarding Children And Young People Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Working In Teams Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Working With Families And Communities Credits: 20 Assessment: Practical

Fees and funding

Home students

Our tuition fee for UK students starting full-time undergraduate study in 2021/22 is £9,250 per year.

† If you are studying an undergraduate course, postgraduate pre-registration course or postgraduate research course over more than one academic year then your tuition fees may increase in subsequent years in line with Government regulations or UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) published fees. More information can be found in our terms and conditions under student fees regulations.

International students

Our tuition fee for International/EU students starting full-time study in 2021/22 is £13,995 per year.

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Financial support for home/EU students

How tuition fees work, student loans and other financial support available.

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Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs for Teaching and education courses (PDF)

Legal information

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and Student Regulations.

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How do I apply?

You can apply for this course through UCAS.

Apply now via UCAS

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