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Early Childhood (Professional Practice) BA (Hons)

What makes Early Childhood (Professional Practice) at Worcester special?

The early years of a child’s life are characterised by the wonder of discovery. This is when a child’s brain develops the majority of its neurons and is at its most receptive to learning. Our emphasis on professional practice means you will enjoy excellent opportunities to build your expertise through a range of placements in schools and children’s centres.  There are also international opportunities available for overseas work experience and the course can support progression to social care, PGCE and other similar courses.

Key features

  • Access to the expertise of the staff at the Centre for Children and Families at the University of Worcester – we have a growing international reputation for publishing and research  
  • Excellent support from your Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) – in 2016, 96% of our students were satisfied with the support from their PAT  
  • A unique aspect of our degree is our approach to Practice-based learning  
  • The degree has been approved as being ‘full and relevant’ by the National College for Teaching Learning – this means that after completing and passing the first year (Level 4) of practice-based learning, students can be included in the Early Years Foundation Stage ratios

Register your interest

Enter your details below and we will keep you up to date with useful information about studying at the University of Worcester.

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry requirements

Our UCAS tariff points for entry to this course are 104, however we are happy to have a conversation with you if you do not meet this requirement but have relevant experience.

Please contact Dr Jackie Musgrave via or 01905 857548.

The points above are the new UCAS tariff, which will be used for courses starting from September 2017. See our new UCAS tariff page for more information.

Other information

You will need to have an enhanced application made to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

Practice-based learning

Emma, Amber and Frances talk about practice-based learning at Worcester.

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Course content

What will you study?

Here is an overview of current modules available on this course. Regular updates may mean that exact module titles may differ.

Year 1


  • Theory into Practice
  • Tuning into Children
  • Transmission to Transformation


  • Health & Well Being
  • Parents and Professional – Positive Relationships
  • Planning for Enabling Environments
  • Play and Playfulness: The Child’s Right to Play

Year 2


  • Theory into Practice
  • The Developing Child in the Family, Community and Culture
  • Continued Academic and Professional Development


  • Children’s Communication and Language
  • Special Education Needs, Disability and Inclusive Practice
  • The Impact of Adverse Life Experiences
  • Expressive and Creative Arts in the Early Years; Engaging Children

Year 3


  • Theory into Practice
  • Deconstructing and Reconstructing Childhood; Whose Childhood is it?
  • Independent Study


  • Developmental Play
  • A Curriculum for Thinking Children
  • Children Becoming Literate
  • Contemporary Issues in Child Health Care Provision

During our first week of university staff made sure that we were not only academically prepared but took the time to get to know us as well. I was so nervous at first but the staff made all of feel very at ease and excited to start the course.

Daryll Crossfield, Level 4 BA in Early Childhood (Professional Practice)

Teaching and Assessment

How will you be taught?

The values and principles of the CEC lecturers advocate a student as partners approach to learning and teaching. Our teaching approach includes the following:

  • Lectures; seminars; demonstrations; problem-based learning approaches; tutorials, group and individual project work; supervised independent learning; e-learning; practice-based learning
  • Teaching involves large and small group sessions
  • Sessions are a mix of tutor-led, student-led and independent learning.
  • Learning opportunities enable active assimilation, application, questioning, debate and critical reflection.

A variety of methods are used within this course to assess learning. These include posters, reports, essays, presentations and you will develop a Practice-based learning Evidence File. Formative assessments allow reflection throughout the years, not just at the end of the year when writing summative assessments.


Earn as you learn

All of our students have 30 days of Practice-Based Learning in a variety of registered early years settings. Students who demonstrate the qualities and skills required of the profession are frequently offered part time employment, especially during the holidays.

Meet the team

Here are a few of the current members of the department who teach on this course:

  • jackie-musgrave

    Dr Jackie Musgrave

    Jackie is the Course Leader for the BA (Hons) in Early Childhood (Professional Practice), she also has responsibility for coordinating students’ practice-based learning experience as part of her role as the Professional Practice Consultant within the Centre for Early Childhood. Jackie joined the Centre for Early Childhood in April 2012. She is a qualified Registered General Nurse and a qualified as a Registered Sick Children’s Nurse at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

  • karen-hanson

    Dr Karen Hanson

    Karen completed her doctoral research into supporting students to develop a reflective disposition. This action research study enabled Karen to understand the significance of previous experiences and environmental influences upon undergraduate students. 

    Karen is particularly interested in the transition periods within different phases of education and understands how important it is to use a variety of perspectives through which to plan appropriate learning environments.


Where could it take you?


The care and developing of young children is a rapidly expanding area, offering graduates a wide range of career opportunities. Early Childhood (Professional Practice) BA (Hons) will equip you with the skills needed to find employment within the health, social care and education professions. You will also have a suitable foundation for a range of careers in social work, children's charities, nurseries, day-care centres, schools and the health service.

For example:

  • Supervisory roles within Early Childhood settings
  • Social care
  • Children’s charities e.g. Barnados
  • Day Care Nurseries, pre-schools and play- work
  • Family and Children’s Centres
  • Early education: Higher Level Teaching Assistants (HLTA)
  • Health and welfare services
  • Local Authority Children’s Services
  • Postgraduate qualifications in Social Work, play therapy, teaching and research degrees.

Request or download a prospectus

Request now


How much will it cost?

Full-time tuition fees

UK and EU students

The standard tuition fee for full-time UK and EU students registering in 2017 will be £9,250.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

International students

The standard tuition fee for full-time international (non-EU) students registering in 2017 will be £11,700 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Part-time tuition fees

UK and EU students

The standard tuition fees for part-time UK and EU students registering on this course in 2017 will be £1,156 per 15-credit module, £1,542 per 20 credit module and £2,313 per 30-credit module.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Additional costs

Every course has day-to-day costs for basic books, stationery, printing and photocopying.  The amounts vary between courses.


Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience, and our welcoming student communities are great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our halls, 358 of which were new in 2009. We offer halls of residence to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £94 per week to the £153 per week 'En-suite Extra'.

For full details visit our accommodation page.

  • scholarship-winners-with-jackie-and-david-green


    Academic Scholarship Winners

    Here are some of our Early Childhood (Professional Practice) Scholarship winners for the last academic year, Kelly, Caitlin, Annie and Lauren, receiving their £1,000 prize from David Green, our Vice-Chancellor. The Scholarship winners achieved 5 grade As in their summative assessments.  So proud of our students for this amazing achievement.

    Jackie Musgrave, our Early Childhood Course Leader, has commented on this achievement: "I could not have been more delighted to be with five of my students at the award ceremony at the Arena last October. They were each given £1,000 because of their achievement in the academic year.  They gained 5 A grades in their assessments.  Congratulations!"


  • emma-bailey

    Case study

    Emma Bailey, Early Childhood Student

    My name is Emma Bailey and I joined the University of Worcester in 2014 as a mature student embarking on the BA (Hons) Early Childhood Professional Practice. I had initially planned on starting the following September but was offered a space in clearing so the move back in to education was a sudden one after 3 years solely working and looking after my young family.

    I naively (and arrogantly) thought the most challenging aspect would be writing academically and thought that due to my position in practice (in a home based childcare setting) that whilst the discussion might be interesting, my experience with children in the EYFS would leave little to be gained from the course other than the recognition that comes with being degree qualified.

    I was right about the discussion, I have thoroughly enjoyed the exploration of theory with passionate and hugely experienced professionals and really feel that upon leaving this course I will miss this level of provocation and insight as it has without a doubt enriched my practice. However, I have gained a far deeper understanding than I had ever anticipated, on aspects of practice that I had previously taken for granted, such as the many discourses of childhood or the meaning of the term ‘quality’.

    During my time on the course I became a Student Representative which allowed me to see the importance that UW places on the student experience and on improvement, I have participated in course management committee meetings and STAR clinics and have had the opportunity to volunteer at UW open days to speak with prospective students.

    This commitment to student experience was only illustrated further when I had my third child during my second year and I felt truly supported by the whole teaching team, allowing me to end my second year with grades that I am proud of. My son has also been welcomed warmly at institute wide planning meetings, enabling me to remain an active advocate for the student voice.

    The Centre for Children and Families have made me feel like one of the team, they have welcomed my contribution to their writing, and my speaking at events and made clear that the student researcher is as valuable as the academic writers we reference.

    Myself and 3 others of my cohort were invited to a celebratory evening where we gained an Academic Achievement Award and a scholarship of £1000 each for our attainment. This just highlights the emphasis with which the university celebrates success and hard work. I have also been supported through gaining the Worcester Award which consolidates work experience and personal development and without a doubt will come with another chance for celebration.

    I genuinely don’t want to leave UW, I feel completely at home here and have never known such an atmosphere of professional and personal development. People here ask you your aspirations and work with you in achieving them, providing opportunities to gain experience, for connecting with academics further afield and working closely in developing your employability far beyond giving you a qualification.

    Luckily for me there is such a thing as postgraduate education so I don’t have to leave just yet.

  • early-childhood-case-study

    Case study

    Student view

    "I chose Worcester because it is close enough to my home that I am able to go home when necessary but mainly because Worcester is beautiful, with the river and the cathedral the city is very inviting and welcoming and the university seems to be a centre aspect of the city, such as the hive.

    "You begin to feel like a member of this small community which is very nice especially as I come from Birmingham."

  • Case study

    Student view

    "The BA Hons Early Childhood studies is a very engaging course, we are provided with opportunities to debate concepts and ideas risen during in lecture which usually lead to insight debates between myself and my cohort.

    "We are required to complete a certain hours within placement and I feel if you go to placement with an open-mind and a willingness to learn and development, placement can be fun and so beneficial especially when it comes to discussion and assignment."


How do you apply?

Applying through UCAS

Early Childhood (Professional Practice) BA (Single Honours) X310 BA/EL


UCAS is the central organisation through which applications are processed for entry onto full-time undergraduate courses in Higher Education in the UK.


Read our How to apply pages for more information on applying and to find out what happens to your application.



Apply now via UCAS

Get in touch

If you have any questions, please get in touch. We're here to help you every step of the way.

Admissions Office

01905 855111