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Foundation Degree Early Years and Childhood Studies (Part-Time)

This part-time foundation degree, validated by the University of Bolton, could be your chance to progress your career while developing your academic skills and knowledge. Mostly work-based, the course aims to combine early years and children’s learning with the practical experiences you encounter in the workplace.
4 & 5
2.5 years
Lee House, Manchester City Centre

The Foundation Degree in Early Years and Childhood Studies meets the requirements for continuing professional development in the early years sector. It will provide the knowledge and skills required for working with children in a range of care and education settings. It will also prepare students to engage with further study, enquiry and practice where knowledge of early years is required.

It is suitable for experienced practitioners working directly with young children (0-8 years) in a range of care and education settings, and for teaching assistants specialising in early years.

When does the course start?

February 2024


What will I achieve?

On successful completion you will achieve a Foundation Degree Early Years and Childhood Studies, awarded by the University of Bolton.

You can them progress on to the BA (Hons) Professional Development in Early Years (Top Up). 


What will the course cover?

Modules listed below are a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules as part of the course.

  • Personal development and study skills
  • The developing child
  • ICT to support children’s learning
  • Facilitating children’s learning
  • Inclusive practice
  • Social policy
  • Safeguarding children
  • Developing reflective practice
  • Research perspectives
  • Creating positive learning experiences for children
  • Independent research project

Each module begins with classes that introduce the course content. We then explore how to apply these concepts to workplace scenarios. In this way we help you to learn to apply your new found knowledge in practice. Tutorials form part of each module and you’ll receive support for your independent work. In addition, the practice trainer will develop your professional practice through observations in the workplace, feedback and one-to-one discussions.

A variety of assessment methods are used throughout the course, including essays, presentations, case studies, activity plans, reflective accounts, critical evaluations and, in the final module, an independent study related to an area of your practice.


When will I attend?

Attendance is required one evening per week 5.30pm - 7.30pm. 

How much does the course cost?

Year one - £6,000

Year two - £6,000

Year three - £2,400

Students are generally entitled to a tuition fee loan from Student Finance England.

For information on student finance visit

What are the entry requirements?
  • Ideally, you'll hold a Level 3 qualification in a childcare-related subject. However, substantial relevant work experience in the early years sector may also be acceptable.
  • You should have GCSE English and Mathematics at grade C or above or grade 4 to 9 (or equivalent). Level 2 Functional Skills are also acceptable. Please contact us if you wish to discuss other equivalent qualifications.
  • You'll need employment or a substantial voluntary role in early years as work-based learning is essential to this course.
  • We consider every application on its individual merits.
  • You'll be required to attend an interview as part of the application process. If you don’t meet the standard entry requirements, we may also ask you to provide a portfolio of work or complete another form of test so that we can assess your suitability for the course.
  • This course involves regulated activity, so you must gain an Enhanced Disclosure certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) before starting your studies. Usually, your employer will organise this. If you need to arrange this yourself, please note that charges are payable to cover the cost of the DBS Enhanced Disclosure application and annual registration with the online Update Service.


Lee House,
90 Great Bridgewater Street,
M1 5JW