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Course Length

2 years


£7,570 per annum

Awarded By

Oxford Brookes

UCAS codes

  • Course Code: X318
  • Institution Code: O66
  • Campus Code: N

FdA in Early Years

This is a full-time equivalent programme, the expected attendance for teaching and assessment in college is one day a week, however students will be expected to carry out work and assessment preparation in their own time.

This programme is undergoing a revalidation which will result in a change to the delivery and/or Module content for 2023-24. This information will be published as soon as it becomes available.

About the course

If you are thinking of building a career in the early years or caring professions sector, then you should enrol on this Level 5 Foundation Degree in Early Years course. This course programme examines theories of child development, play and learning (including the role of the adult), and a thorough appreciation of international and cultural perspectives.

Through lectures, seminars and workshops, students gain a greater understanding of policy as well as regulatory and legislative frameworks. This course is to be studied over 24 months.

Students will have access to both the LDCs at New College Swindon, and Oxford Brookes, including electronic resources.

A range of assessment types are employed throughout the Modules and will enable students to demonstrate knowledge in a variety of ways, including essay, reports, and presentations. There are no formal written exams. In modules with more than one assignment, you must pass both in order to pass the module. Further details of the assignment tasks relating to each module will be provided in each Module Handbook.

Topics in year one include:

  • Studying policy and practice
  • Introduction to child development
  • Reflective practice & early years pedagogy
  • Children’s digital learning
  • Inclusion & wellbeing
  • Working with families and caregivers
  • Global perspectives

Topics in year two include:

  • Developing pedagogies for artwork with young children
  • Children’s voice
  • Researching with young children
  • Contemporary issues in child development
  • Early Years environments
  • Leading early years practice

Entry Requirements

Typically, applicants must have one of the following:

• BTEC, NVQ or other appropriate vocational qualification at Level 3

• An appropriate A Level, or six-unit vocational A Level,

• An advanced modern apprenticeship in Early Years or related subject.

• Applicants should have a minimum of two years’ experience in an Early Years setting, working directly with children for a minimum of 10 hours per week.

Applicants will need to evidence a satisfactory DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check.

Each application will be considered on an individual basis following the University’s principle of widening access to those who might not have the traditional academic entry criteria to degree level awards.

Where next?

On successful completion of the Foundation Degree, students may wish to continue to study (subject to interview and qualifying entry criteria) towards a full honours degree through the BA programme at the College, gaining graduate status. Once students have gained the full Honours Degree, they may then progress to Initial Teaching Training routes such as PGCE* or GTTP* or to gain Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS)* *please note: students will require GCSE C or above in English, Maths and Science.

Example job roles:

  • Early Years Teacher
  • Primary School Teacher
  • Educational Psychologist
  • Child Psychotherapist
  • Special Educational Needs Advisor
  • Play Therapist
  • Safeguarding Officer
  • Family Support Worker

Work experience and employability

All students must complete a minimum of ten hours each week throughout the course, working in an Early Years setting which follows the EYFS Framework. This may be as paid employment or within a voluntary role.

Student finance information

Find Student Finance Information on the Government website.

Students enrolling on this course can apply for the Higher Education Scholarship.


For all course enquiries please contact us by email at

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