Early Childhood Studies FdA Foundation Degree

Early Childhood Studies FdA Foundation Degree

UCAS Code: X310 Duration: 2 Years Attendance: Full Time Location: Farnborough Campus Start Date: 11/09/2023    
UCF University of Surrey


About the course

Work towards a rewarding career by exploring the everyday and unique factors that shape children’s learning and development, supported by experienced lecturers and hands-on work placements. This course starts each September and is awarded by the University of Surrey.

Course highlights

  • This course is a two-year foundation degree, which can be converted to a full degree by completing a one-year top-up degree
  • It is taught over four days per week and has full-time status
  • Offers the chance to gain vital work experience and exposure to different industries through weekly work placements (one day per week) and additional two to three-week block placements
  • Can provide a route into careers related to early years, health, social care and education – start your journey in training to become a teacher
  • Provides the opportunity to achieve Early Years Educator Status (a Level 2 qualification in Maths and English is required)
  • Has previously involved educational trips, including exploring the Reggio Emilia approach to education in Italy and visiting early years centres, schools and local authorities in Finland


Why study this course with us?


The study of early childhood and the complex influences on a child’s development is a fascinating topic for those interested in working with children. Through this course, you will discover how factors such as play, health and wellbeing, working with families and safeguarding all play a part in shaping the lives of young people.

At Farnborough, your lecturers will have experience working in a range of early years and education settings. This will give you a full insight into your subject in the classroom and beyond. Staff attendance at conferences and additional training also ensures that teaching reflects up-to-date practices in the industry.

The early years curriculum (Foundation and Key Stage 1) is covered within this course, together with the study of management in childcare and education. As well as exploring key theories and research, you will have the opportunity to put what you learn into practice through weekly work placements (one day per week). This will enable you to develop personal, practical and transferable skills, as well as gaining experiences that can help set you apart from other graduates when starting your new career.

Who is this programme for?

This degree is suitable for those who are passionate about working with children or within the early years sector, such as in schools, hospitals and residential care homes. You might currently be studying a Level 3, A Level, or Access to Higher Education course, be returning to education after a break, or wish to transfer from another higher education institution. It may also be possible for you to join this course in its second year following relevant qualifications and/or experience in the workplace.

What will I study?

The first year of this degree will introduce you to key areas in the understanding of children’s development and the necessary knowledge needed to work with children. During the second year you will delve deeper into more specialist topics, exploring prominent theoretical models, the influences of individual needs and differing approaches in European countries. You will complete a literature review in your second year, providing you with the opportunity to research a topic of special interest and develop skills that will benefit you on an honours degree programme.


Fee Per Year £8000

Please note that while we make reasonable adjustments to remove any barriers to education, additional fees may be payable where this is not possible. For example, to provide additional support due to a disability. Please contact us if you believe you have any additional needs so that we can discuss your options before enrolling on a course.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about this course then please contact us by phone on 01252 40 55 55 or message us.

Apply for this course

Your course

How will I be taught?

A range of teaching techniques are used in this degree to deliver content in useful and varied ways. This includes lecture-based presentations, practical sessions including role play and observation, individual and group project work, and individual presentations.

Work-based experience is a key feature of this course. You will be required to spend one day per week on work placement with additional two to three-week block placements during your studies.

What modules are covered?

Year 1

  • Children’s Development and Learning (0-8 years)
  • Children’s Rights, Policy and Practice
  • Safeguarding the Child
  • Working with the Under 2s
  • Observation, Assessment and Planning
  • Value of Play
  • Professional Practice 1: Academic Skills
  • Professional Practice 2: Professional Skills

Year 2

  • Understanding Young Children’s Behaviour
  • Health and Wellbeing in the Early Years
  • Early Years Framework, Curriculum and Planning
  • History and Perspectives of Early Childhood
  • Leadership & Management in Early Years Settings
  • Introduction to Research
  • Professional Practice 3: Partnerships
  • Professional Practice 4: Personal Development

How will I be assessed?

You will normally be assessed throughout your course to test your understanding within each module. This will be done through a combination of written assignments, literature reviews, presentations, professional development journals, formal examinations, project proposals and case studies.

Programme Structure

The structure of our programmes follows educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the Programme Specification documents found under our Quality Assurance page, including further details such as the learning outcomes.

Apply for this course

Your future

What Next?

Upon completion of this degree, you will have the option to convert your qualification to a full degree by completing a one-year top-up degree - such as our BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies Top-up.

There are a wide number of careers where your new degree will be relevant. Some of the examples below may require extra training and experience first. Please speak to our careers advisers to discover which career routes are best for you.

Jobs directly related to early childhood studies degrees include:

  • Early years teacher
  • Education consultant
  • Family support worker
  • Health play specialist
  • Learning mentor
  • Special educational needs coordinator (SENCO)
  • Social worker
  • Teaching assistant
  • Youth worker

Jobs where a degree in early childhood studies might be useful include:

  • Child psychotherapist
  • Children’s nurse
  • Community development worker
  • Counsellor
  • Educational psychology
  • Speech and language therapist

Transferable Skills

  • Independent learning
  • Written and oral communication
  • Team working
  • Research and analytical skills
  • Organisational and time management skills
  • Problem solving
  • IT Skills
Apply for this course

Entry Requirements

What is the entry process?

You can apply for this higher education course in the following ways:

  • Via the UCAS website. Visit www.ucas.com and browse the courses available under 'University Centre Farnborough'. 
  • Directly to University Centre Farnborough via the button on this webpage. Applications take around 15 minutes and are free of charge. You can apply to us direct at any time in the year (including after the UCAS deadline). Applications of this type are separate to the UCAS system, which means you could also apply for more than the five universities that UCAS allows.

UCAS Code - X310

Institution Code - F66

What previous qualifications and experience will I need?


  • 48 UCAS points from relevant subject(s)
  • An Access to Higher Education Diploma in a relevant subject, with suitable grades
  • Evidence of relevant work experience and/or recent study, following a successful interview

Applications are considered on an individual basis, and we recommend that you apply even if you are not sure that you meet the criteria above.

If English is not your first language, evidence of your ability will need to be supplied with your applications. IELTS 6.5 is required. 

Apply for this course

Ask a Question

Course Enquiry

Please contact us through the form below. After submitting a form we will contact you as soon as possible. We will delete your information one month after the beginning of the next academic year.

Apply for this course



You can apply for this course online.

Add to basket Apply for this course

Our Facilities

Skip to content