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Course Mode
Start Date
Start / End Time
9:30am - 12:30pm
33 Weeks
Westmorland Campus

Education & Childcare

Childcare and education is one of the most exciting and rewarding sectors and one that needs top quality staff at all levels and offers plenty of career choice, working with children of all ages and within various settings.

View course department

Course Overview

This pathway provides the suitable level of occupational competence to meet regulatory and registration requirements for the sector.

Achievement of this pathway will enable apprentices to access higher level jobs within the sector, e.g. Nursery Supervisor, Nursery Manager, Pre-school Manager/Co-ordinator, etc. There is also opportunity for apprentices to go on to further study at higher levels, particularly working towards Foundation Degrees in Early Years. This in turn will support the achievement of Early Years Professional Status (Graduate level).

See DfE website for further information on:

You will study the Level 3 Diploma in Children's Learning and Development (Early Years Educator) (QCF) which includes topics such as:

- Understand Children's Early Years Education and Development
- Implementing Early Years Foundation Stage
- Plan and Provide Effective Teaching and Learning in Early Years Settings
- Understanding How to Promote Play and Learning in the Early Years

NB: From the 1st August 2015 any persons signing onto the EYE qualification must have already gained the GCSE qualifications in Maths and English at Grade A-C. If you do not hold a GCSE Grade A-C in Maths or English you will need to achieve the necessary grade/s prior enrolling on the EYE qualification. Our success rates for mature learners taking GCSEs are very high. Please contact Student Services for more information: 01539 814700/

Any learners with grade C or above GCSE (or O level) will be exempt from doing the GCSE's again.

Suitable candidates may be expected to attend group sessions or be supported on a 1:1 basis and take part in work based assessments. Candidates will demonstrate proof of competence through their own work whilst on the programme. Methods of assessment used by the assessors are assignments, case studies, observations, witness testimonies, reflective accounts and some work products.

The candidate will be expected to produce a portfolio of evidence. Assessment and verification will be undertaken by the college. This will be carried out by qualified lecturers, assessors and internal verifiers.

Entry Requirements

From the 1st August 2015 any persons signing onto the EYE qualification will be required to achieve GCSE qualifications in Maths and English at Grade A-C on completion of the course if not already held. To confirm, any learners with grade C or above will be exempt from doing the GCSE's again.

As the level of this qualification (L3) determines that the applicant should be working at a level where they may either be working on their own or supervising others, the applicant should have prior experience of the sector and be employed or volunteering in a position whereby they would be able to demonstrate the competencies required at this level.

As part of the entry criteria for this course you will need to have a check completed by the Disclosure and Barring service. This does not mean that if you have any previous convictions or warnings that you will not be able to join this programme, but an assessment will be completed as to your suitability to progress on to the programme. Please discuss with us in confidence if you have concerns about the content of your check.

You will need to be working or on a voluntary placement within a childcare environment for a minimum of 2 days a week. This could be within a children's centre, childminding setting, a nursery or school Early Years class. Students should organise this before enrolment.

You will also need to attend an interview with one of the Childhood Studies team to assess your suitability. Please contact Diane Fryer - Email:

After Your Course

Early Years Educator.

Job roles include:

Nursery Worker/Supervisor often working in a supervisory role (but not necessarily) within a nursery/early learning and childcare setting, providing care for young children.

Nursery Nurse / Nursery Teaching Assistant Delivering the Early Years Foundation Stage within a maintained school setting.



The fee displayed is the course fee. Course fees are per year for full-time courses and per course for part-time courses.

Other costs may be associated with this course, e.g., kit, equipment, books, trips, etc. Financial support may be available to support you with these. See the Student Money pages for more information.

Courses fees

The current full-time & degree-level fee information is related to the 2024/25 academic year.

Level 3-6 Courses

Advanced Learning Loans are available for students aged 19 or over and studying eligible level 3, 4, 5 & 6 courses. If you are on an Access course, the loan will be written off if you complete a degree.

You may qualify for financial support to cover the cost of a Level 3 qualification if you do not already have a Level 3 qualification (this will depend on the course & your age on 31/08/24).

Please speak to Student Services for more information on course fees.


The fees displayed are for the one-year AS-Level course. If you would like to progress onto the full A-Level, please get in touch with us for the cost of the second year, as it will be different.

16-18 year olds

There are no course fees if you were aged 16-18 on 31/08/24 and are not studying at another institution.