Why study this course

The BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies is a sector approved ‘full and relevant’ programme

Special offer for 2021 entry only! Free sector approved Paediatric First Aid Course offered as part of the programme

Progressing into Teaching? FREE pre-teaching course and guaranteed interview for PGCE

Have you always wanted to work with young children (ages 0-8) but are unsure on your career pathway? If so then this course is ideal for you.

Course summary

The BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies is a three-year undergraduate programme which introduces students to aspects of education, health and social care, with a specific focus on children from 0 – 8 years of age.

Key facts


BA (Hons)

UCAS code



3 years

Mode of study


Start date


Awarding institution

Bishop Grosseteste University

Institution code


Course details

About this course

What will you study

Students on this course currently study some or all of the following modules

This module introduces you to some of the key theories associated with learning. Commencing with an examination of theories underpinning learning in childhood you will then have the opportunity to reflect on your own learning through the lens of adult learning theories.

You will develop knowledge and understanding of the cultural context of social and emotional development in children from birth to 8 years and the factors which can impact upon it. You will be introduced to a range of theoretical approaches such as Bowlby’s Attachment theory, Erikson’s Psychosocial theory and Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems theory in order to appreciate that social and emotional development is complex and can be viewed from differing perspectives.

Starting from the earliest influences on children’s language development before birth, you will learn how children become confident and capable communicators, drawing upon a range of developmental, sociological and psychological theoretical perspectives. Through placement experience you will be introduced to observation as a research tool and the ethical issues which this raises when working with young children.

This module includes a study of historical practice and provision for children and young people and covers the work of early social, educational and health reformers such as Froebel, Isaacs, Pestalozzi and Rousseau. You will be encouraged to question underlying philosophies of the social and political motivations for shaping policy in the provision made for children and young people.

This module includes a study of the holistic nature of learning, focusing in depth on guidance in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and its relationship to Key Stage 1. You will engage in analysis and reflection and will consider the influence of the adult role in a variety of settings.

During this module, you will consider current understandings of the meaning of play and creativity and the interrelationships between them. Concepts of ‘adult-led’ and ‘child-led’ play will be explored, and you will be encouraged to evaluate current arguments about the role and function of both play and creativity especially in educational contexts.

You will consider the diverse needs of young children for example in areas of disability, gender issues, race and culture, special educational and social needs and gifted and talented children. The roles of the practitioner and the importance of inter-disciplinary working to support these needs and safeguard young children will be considered, using case histories to see how policy and practice has evolved.

The module considers the factors affecting child well-being and health, analysing the role and influence of wider determinants such as poverty, vaccination and inoculation, abuse/neglect, diet and exercise. Measures of health and well-being will be discussed and assessed from both adult and child perspectives.

You will be introduced to various research methodologies and approaches and develop an understanding of how research can be used to investigate provision and practice in early years. You will consider ethical issues in researching babies and young children, and consider conceptualisations of the child as subjects, objects or participants and the role of child as co-researcher.

In this module you will consider childhood within a historical timeline, looking at ways in which childhood has been influenced by key social issues such as the role of religion in society or the rise of family life in eighteenth century England. The module will consider the arguments surrounding children’s rights.

This module will examine some of the causes of challenging behaviour in the early years and will identify some of the strategies for managing behaviour in early years settings and schools. You will explore the shared responsibilities of parents, professionals and support agencies, alongside government and local authority policy.

This module allows you to design and conduct an in depth study of personal interest and/or related to potential future training or employment. A focus on action research methodology, the links between literature and design and a consideration of ways in
which research findings can contribute to provision and practice in early years settings will be key elements of your work on this module.

You will be introduced to leadership and management theories, including historical concepts of leadership and styles of leadership emanating from conceptual understandings, e.g. transformational, transactional and distributed leadership. Functional approaches to leadership analysis and working with professionals through team work and the application of different leadership styles will be critiqued, e.g. Belbin, Tuckman, and Adair.

This module will include critical analysis and comparison of international early years issues, practice and provision. A variety of issues relating to education, health and social care will be considered within historical, cultural and political contexts.

In this module you will focus on current, and perceived future, common issues affecting children, their families and practitioners. You will be guided in researching these developments in terms of the political, economic and cultural contexts which surround them, considering the historical influences on current provision and practice.

Entry requirements

You will normally need 96-112 UCAS tariff points (from a maximum of four Advanced Level qualifications). We welcome a range of qualifications that meet this requirement, such as A/AS Levels, BTEC, Access Courses, International Baccalaureate (IB), Cambridge Pre-U, Extended Project etc.

However this list is not exhaustive – please click here for details of all qualifications in the UCAS tariff.

Further information

Click here for important information about this course including additional costs, resources and key policies.

In accordance with University conditions, students are entitled to apply for Accredited Prior Learning, AP(C)L, based on relevant credit at another HE institution or credit Awarded for Experiential Learning, (AP(E)L).

How you will be taught

Please note that due to COVID-19 our delivery methods may be subject to change in 2021. You will be informed of any changes at the earliest opportunity.

There is no one-size-fits-all method of teaching at BGU – we shape our methods to suit each subject and each group, combining the best aspects of traditional university teaching with innovative techniques to promote student participation and interactivity.

You will be taught in a variety of ways, from lectures, tutorials and seminars, to practical workshops, coursework and work-based placements. Small group seminars and workshops will provide you with an opportunity to review issues raised in lectures, and you will be expected to carry out independent study.

Placements are a key part of degree study within many courses at BGU. They provide an enriching learning experience for you to apply the skills and knowledge you will gain from your course and, in doing so, give valuable real-world experience to boost your career.


We recognise that individuals come from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences, so we use a variety of assessment strategies in our courses. Assessments in Early Childhood Studies take place at the end of each module in order for you to demonstrate your understanding of the objectives covered. A wide range of assessment methods is used to support your learning, including the production of portfolios, presentations and displays. You’ll also be assessed through written essays, discussions, debates and multimedia projects. Assessments are not only designed to assess your knowledge and understanding but also help you to develop transferable skills which will support you as you enter the early year's workforce.

Careers & Further study

Early Childhood is a growing sector and the skills learnt on this course will enable you to enter the children’s workforce in a range of different roles. Some of our students seek a route into teaching through a PGCE qualifications here at BGU, whilst others enter other teacher training routes. Many of our graduates have gone on to further study in areas of specialism including psychology, speech and language or midwifery, whilst others have entered the workforce as managers of early years settings. The diverse nature of this course will also enable you to go on to further study such as postgraduate study on a master degree, seeking wider opportunities in many different fields, including health and social care, children’s social work, play therapy and speech and language therapy. Possible future careers for Early Childhood Studies graduates may include as a Teacher or classroom assistant, Speech and language therapy, Early years management, Social work or Play therapy.

Interested in a career in teaching?

As an Undergraduate student at BGU, you'll be offered a free place on one of our Preparing for Teaching (P4T) courses as a part of your degree (currently exclusive to BGU students).

Led by our team of teacher training experts, the course is designed to prepare you to apply for a place on a PGCE programme. It covers topics such as:

  • How to apply
  • What to expect at an interview
  • The realities of teaching and much more

Not only will you gain essential skills that will support you in your future career, by completing the course you'll also get a guaranteed interview to one of our highly sought after PGCE courses.

If you have any questions about the P4T courses you can register by clicking here or you can speak to our Admissions team via admissions@bishopg.ac.uk


Studying at BGU is a student-centred experience. Staff and students work together in a friendly and supportive atmosphere as part of an intimate campus community. You will know every member of staff personally and feel confident approaching them for help and advice, and staff members will recognise you, not just by sight, but as an individual with unique talents and interests.

We will be there to support you, personally and academically, from induction to graduation.

Fees & Finance

A lot of student finance information is available from numerous sources, but it is sometimes confusing and contradictory. That’s why at BGU we try to give you all the information and support we can to help to throughout the process. Our Student Advice team are experts in helping you sort out the funding arrangements for your studies, offering a range of services to guide you through all aspects of student finance step by step.

Click here to find information about fees, loans and support which will help to make the whole process a little easier to understand.

Undergraduate course applicants must apply via UCAS using the relevant UCAS code. For 2021 entry, the application fee is £20 for a single choice, or £26 for more than one choice. For all applicants, there are full instructions at UCAS to make it as easy as possible for you to fill in your online application, plus help text where appropriate.