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  • Course Length

    32 weeks

  • Fees


  • Awarded By

    Bath Spa University

  • UCAS codes

    • Course Code: X333
    • Institution Code: B20
    • Campus Code: L

Early Childhood Studies BA (Hons) Top-up

Boost your Foundation qualification with a top-up degree, delivered by New College Swindon and designed by Bath Spa. On successful completion of this course, you’ll be a Level 6 graduate practitioner, enabling you to confidently navigate a number of professional roles within early childhood education and care.

The course follows a term-based teaching pattern that’s designed to enable you to work while you study. You’ll spend one day a week on campus and apply your learning in your current early years role.

Run by a specialist University liaison, in collaboration with subject experts from New College Swindon, BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies Top-Up offers support from a close-knit teaching team, plus access to Bath Spa’s library and digital resources.

You’ll benefit from the expertise of incoming guest lecturers from Bath Spa University, who visit once or twice a year to present on their current research in early childhood education and care.

You’ll already be working in an early years setting, and you’ll have the opportunity to apply the theories explored on the course in your professional practice. This is particularly true of your dissertation, which is an independent project that you’ll undertake with our guidance and support. You’ll choose a dissertation topic that interests you and feeds into your aspirations.

Course Content

This rich, academic course is grounded in practice and reflection. You’ll develop your understanding of how children learn, and enhance your interactions with them. This is a child-focused top-up degree, designed by Bath Spa University to enable you to continually develop your professional practice.


Education dissertation (40 credits) - build upon your early years knowledge and understanding with this substantive research project in an area of interest.

International perspectives of early childhood (20 credits) - explore global perspectives on early childhood education and compare them to UK policies and practices.

Leadership and teamwork in early childhood (20 credits) - consider the socio-cultural contexts of family and schools and their impacts upon attitudes to leadership and teamwork.

Pedagogy, culture and society (20 credits) - explore how technological, cultural, environmental and political discourses affect early years education.

Symbolic representation: young children making meaning (20 credits) - observe how children engage with literacy and language and understand their surroundings.


Students who pass this course are eligible to apply for postgraduate study, such as MA Education (Early Childhood Studies) at Bath Spa.

Graduates can also take other paths into education, such as initial teacher training with a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE).

As a graduate, you’ll also be qualified to progress to managerial roles in settings such as nurseries, childrens’ centres, and community and family projects.

Entry Requirements

You’ll have successfully completed an accredited Foundation Degree in Early Years, or equivalent qualification, and will usually have achieved a minimum average grade profile of 50% in year two of your Foundation degree or equivalent qualification.

If you don’t have formal qualifications, previous experience may be taken into account. Candidates will be assessed on an individual basis.


Study mode: Full-time or part-time
Course length: 32 weeks (full-time)
Contact hours: 7 hours per week (full-time)
Expected self-study: 30 hours per week (full-time)
Assessment: Coursework = 100%

Costs and Resources

Tuition fees for 2020 entry: £8,250 (TBC)
Additional costs:
DBS Check
Student finance information: www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance

Programme Leader: Dawn Evans (dawn.evans@newcollege.ac.uk)

IMPORTANT COVID-19 UPDATE - Information about how courses and teaching may be affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

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