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FdA Early Years Practice

Summary 2015/16

This is a programme created for new-to-role or experienced early years practitioners. Practical, work-based learning will improve both your experience and professional confidence, resulting in invaluable skills to boost your career prospects.

If you work with children aged between birth and five years and seek a higher education qualification, then this course is for you. You will gain a solid academic grounding that will improve your current knowledge and understanding of being an effective early years practitioner. This will provide opportunities for you to develop further as an early years professional following graduation.

Location: Edge Hill University
Holy Cross College, Bury
Minsthorpe Community College
Course Type: Foundation Degree
Attendance & Study Mode:
2 years: Full Time
2 years: Part Time
Start Date: September 2015

2015/16 Entry Requirements

To join this programme on a full-time basis:

40 UCAS Tariff points are required. You can achieve 40 UCAS Tariff points from A Level Grade E or BTEC National Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) P.

Accreditation of prior learning through relevant NVQ Level 4 or 5 qualifications may be possible. GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or above (or equivalent) is desirable.

You will be required to apply for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, previously CRB) Enhanced Disclosure indicating that you meet the mandatory criteria of 'Clearance to Work with Children and/or Vulnerable Adults'. You should not seek to obtain this before applying for the course.

To join this programme on a part-time basis:

40 UCAS Tariff points or relevant Level 3 qualifications are required. You can achieve 40 UCAS Tariff points from A Level Grade E or BTEC National Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) P. Previous experience of working with children aged 0-5 years can also be considered.

Accreditation of prior learning through relevant NVQ Level 4 or 5 qualifications may be possible. GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or above (or equivalent) is desirable.

You must be working (on a full-time, part-time or voluntary basis) in an early years setting with children aged 0-5 years.

You will be required to apply for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, previously CRB) Enhanced Disclosure indicating that you meet the mandatory criteria of 'Clearance to Work with Children and/or Vulnerable Adults'. You should not seek to obtain this before applying for the course.

How do I apply?

For the full-time programme, apply online through UCAS at

To study part-time, apply directly to Edge Hill University. Download the application form (pdf) and notes for guidance (pdf).

Visit to find out more about the application process.

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Faculty Website

Faculty of Education


What will I study?

Modules at Level 4 address various professional, academic and vocational issues common to all Early Years workers. As well as gaining a greater understanding of holistic child development in social and cultural contexts, you will be taught specific best practice techniques and principles, and learn how to plan and manage different roles and responsibilities in a modern, multi-professional workplace.

Depending on status and experience, you will progress onto a choice of Level 5 modules to boost your individual development and your personal and professional development as a trained Early Years professional in the workplace. Topics currently available include:

  • How to best meet the diverse needs of young children;
  • Working with interdisciplinary teams and managing other practitioners;
  • Delivering the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum and assessment.

Supported learning using the internet and Edge Hill University's online resources is a major feature of the programme. No prior IT experience is necessary, as full support will be provided.

How will I study?

Following an initial induction, you will attend face-to-face sessions one afternoon per week. Along with face-to-face sessions, you will be asked to complete directed tasks and carry out independent research.

Who will be teaching me?

You will be taught by a highly experienced team of early years lecturers and associate tutors who have extensive expertise and experience and a passion for early years. All of the team are involved in current research and have actively contributed to projects including the development of the Early Years Foundation Stage and the National Professional Qualification in Integrated Centre Leadership (NPQICL). Each member of the team brings a particular expertise and all are highly respected practitioners.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed through coursework which involves portfolios, written essays, presentations, self-evaluations and the completion of a small-scale research project.

What are my career prospects?

New and exciting roles are in Children's Centres, Local Authorities, Nurseries and pre-schools, including multi-agency work and Early Years Teacher Status.

This foundation degree may also lead you to progress onto the BA (Hons) Early Years Practice.

Related Programmes

Fees and Finance

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for full-time study on this foundation degree are £6,000 per annum for UK and EU students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2015/16.

Tuition fees for part-time study on this foundation degree are £50 per credit for UK and EU students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2015/16. 240 credits are required to complete a foundation degree.

Financial Support

Subject to eligibility, UK and EU students can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. Full-time UK students may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK and EU students joining this programme in academic year 2015/16, together with details of how to apply for funding, please view our Money Matters 2015/16 guide for your intended mode of study:


Edge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time foundation degree students. These scholarships aren't linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit

Not got the entry requirements?

We welcome applications from those who wish to return to education and encourage you to present your previous experience in work (paid or unpaid) to support your application.

If you do not have GCSE English and GCSE Mathematics at grades C or above, Edge Hill offers equivalency tests in English and mathematics.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual's professional and employment experience (also referred to as 'experiential learning').

Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University's Recognition of Prior Learning Policy and contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

Where can I find out more?

If you would like to receive a copy of our prospectus or be kept updated about forthcoming events, contact Course Enquiries by emailing or calling 01695 657000.

If you want to attend one of our open events held throughout the year, visit to book your place.

You will also find Edge Hill University staff at many national careers fairs and UCAS events.

Still want more?

If you have any questions you would like to ask the programme team about this course, please contact:

  • Faculty of Education Undergraduate Administration Team, Edge Hill University, St Helens Road, Ormskirk, Lancashire, L39 4QP
  • Tel: 01695 650811
  • Email:

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Year 1

FDE1101 Meeting the Diverse Needs of the Whole Child (30 credits) provides a foundation for all subsequent modules studied in year 1. It develops your knowledge of the diverse needs of children in different historical, social and cultural contexts and the role of the practitioner in the promotion of children’s learning.

FDE1000 Personal and Professional Development in a Work-based Context (30 credits) is a setting-based module that runs for the whole year and is undertaken in your setting / workplace. It involves a self-review of your knowledge and skills against national standards, target setting and the creation of action plans based on the reflections on your personal professional practice.

FDE1002 Exploring Early Years Curriculum (30 credits) is designed to equip you with essential knowledge and understanding of the principles and the content of the early years curriculum with a focus on a child-centred approach. The module will help you to identify key elements of early years education and link those to their practical experiences. The module will also give you an opportunity to reflect on your own practice and formulate principles in relation to the fundamental dimensions of quality early years provision.

FDE1003 Working with Families, Communities and Other Practitioners (20 credits) examines how early years practitioners meet the needs of families and communities within the early years context. There will be a consideration of historical, social and cultural perspectives on the development of the notions of ‘childhood’, ‘family’ and ‘community’. The module includes an investigation into the range of family and community structures and the opportunities for children’s learning and development provided within these structures. The module will also introduce you to the theoretical and practical aspects of team working within the early years settings and, in particular, the impact of working in multi-professional teams on young children and their families.

FDE1004 Researching Early Years Leadership and Practice (10 credits) provides a background knowledge and understanding of the key elements of educational research, including methodology, research methods and ethics. The purpose of this introductory module is to prepare you for a small-scale research investigation in Year 2.

Year 2

FDP2101 Working with Children to Enhance the Quality of Provision to Meet Specific Needs (30 credits) furthers your understanding of the ways in which you can develop your practice to ensure quality provision in your setting. You will consider the principles underpinning quality management and practice and look at developing effective strategies for monitoring and evaluating your work with children, families and the community.

FDP2000 Developing Personal and Professional Effectiveness in Early Years Practice (30 credits) provides structured and supported opportunities for you to investigate an issue or an initiative, centred around early years policy and practice. You will be asked to examine and discuss a particular issue or initiative impacting on early years development and learning. The management of this issue or initiative will be analysed in relation to two contrasting settings, one of which will be your own.

FDP2002 Meeting the Requirements of the Early Years Curriculum (30 credits) will develop your understanding of the holistic nature of development and learning in the young child, together with the role of practitioners within the process of providing high quality care and education for children aged 0-5. The module requires you to critically evaluate key aspects of the Early Years Foundation Stage, focusing on theoretical and practical approaches to planning, provision for learning, and assessment for 0-5 year old children. Issues of transitions within the context of the Early Years Foundation Stage will be critically examined.

FDP2003 Building and Managing Early Years Partnerships (30 credits) develops your knowledge and understanding of the theoretical models of leadership and management of early years teams. The module will focus on the application of basic 'team' theory to early years settings, allowing you to consider your current practice. It enables you to engage in critical discussions of a range of early years partnerships within the current and developing early years context.

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Edge Hill University
St Helens Road
L39 4QP
United Kingdom
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+44(0)1695 575171