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What makes Advancing Practice special?*

This course will engage you in critical and analytical reflection, as well as encourage you to carry out individual and collaborative research. Aimed at professionals from a range of settings, you will be provided with opportunities to refine professional practice, relate theory to practice and to evaluate your capacity to facilitate change in the working environment. You will also be equipped with the skills to make a significant impact on your own workplace practices and to positively influence those of others.

The separate pathways available within the course structure will allow you to continue your own professional journey. The potential for knowledge development and skills acquisition can support you to fulfil future specialist roles within your field. To ensure that your studies are relevant to your current or future role, you will also have the opportunity to negotiate a specific assignment that is suitable to you. 

This University of Worcester award is delivered by the partner institution The Learning Institute. Delivery venues range across Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, London and Somerset, (though not on the University of Worcester campus). The running of the degree and of individual groups will be subject to minimum numbers.

This course is currently *subject to approval



Key features

  • Available pathways include Early Years Professional, Mental Health and Wellbeing of Children and Young People, Learning and Education and Inclusive Education
  • Regular learning sessions, either face-to-face learning in local venues or online, enabling you to balance study, work and home demands
  • Local delivery in a study group to support you to be successful in your study
  • Multi-disciplinary weekend conferences, Friday evening and all day Saturday, to assist you to engage and network with students and tutors on your course from across the country
  • Share your study with students across a small number of interrelated pathways
  • Opportunities to develop networks across education, mental health and well-being sectors
  • Benefit from strong practice links already established across The Learning Institute and professionals, practitioners, service managers
Students walking to campus smiling

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We're in the top 20 for student experience in the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry requirements

Foundation degree, DipHE, HND or equivalent qualification in education, health, care or welfare or related subject.

We consider applications from individuals from a wide range of prior educational and employment experiences. We will also consider applicants from non-standard entry routes.

We encourage applications from candidates who can provide evidence of their ability to work at Level 6 and substantial experience of working within education, health, care or social welfare.

A supportive academic reference.

Other information

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the Admissions Office on 01905 855111 or email for advice.

Further information about the UCAS Tariff can be obtained from

Course content

What will you study?

Our courses are informed by research and current developments in the discipline and feedback from students, external examiners and employers. Modules do therefore change periodically in the interests of keeping the course relevant and reflecting best practice. The most up-to-date information will be available to you once you have accepted a place and registered for the course. If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this might not be offered, but we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative. 



  • The positionality of the practitioner
  • Engaging with change in the professional environment
  • Specialism in focus

Mandatory (Pathway Specific Modules)

  • Perspectives of childhood for Early Years Professional Pathway
  • Psychological perspectives in learning environments for Learning and Education Pathway
  • Culture and Disability for Inclusive Education Pathway
  • Mental health and wellbeing issues in contemporary society for Mental Health and Wellbeing of Children and Young People Pathway


  • Research Project
  • Social Enterprise Project
Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

The University places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement. A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.


This mode of delivery involves a blended learning approach. You are taught through a combination of face-to-face teaching, live-on-line learning, tutorials and guided online learning alongside independent study time. Online learning is mostly in a virtual learning environment (VLE) called Blackboard. You will require a good level of ICT competence and computer and software including access to broadband and an up-to-date web browser. Face to face learning takes place in small study groups providing opportunities to interact with other students who are studying on the top-up, they may be from the other related pathways so providing an enriching environment. These study groups provide you with a supportive peer learning environment where you can develop your skills and share your learning. In addition, meetings with personal academic tutors are scheduled on at least four occasions in the across the year.

Both face-to-face teaching and live-on-line online learning take a variety of formats and are intended to enable the application of learning through discussion, small group activities and individual learning. Group and individual tutorials enable the discussion and development of knowledge, key concepts and skills as well as providing support as you approach key assessments.

In addition to the weekly learning sessions, there will be twice yearly conferences on Friday evening and Saturday daytime with set study sessions that provide the opportunity to work with other students on your pathway from across the county giving you an additional layer of peer support and networking opportunities.

Teaching location

This University of Worcester award is delivered by the partner institution The Learning Institute. Delivery venues range across Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, London and Somerset, (though not on the University of Worcester campus). The running of the degree and of individual groups will be subject to minimum numbers.

Contact time

In a typical week you will have around 8 hours of planned learning via teaching, guided study or tutorials. The planned learning sessions will comprise a range of learning activities which will change week to week depending on whether they are face-face or live-online and from module to module.

Independent self-study

In addition to the contact time, you are expected to undertake around 29 hours of personal self-study per week some elements of which could take place within the workplace. Typically, this will involve completing online activities, reading journal articles and books, working on individual projects, undertaking research using the online library or when possible within the workplace, as well as preparing coursework assignments.


1 year full time


Scheduled teaching will take place on the same single day each week for most weeks of the year and you will be aware of the day and timing of these sessions at least two months before registration. Detailed timetables are normally available one month before registration. Additionally there is the expectation that all students attend both Friday evening and Saturday conferences as these are an integrated part of the study programme which include face-to-face teaching for specific modules.

Teaching staff

The team includes professional practitioners from across the fields of study covered by the degree programme. Teaching is informed by the research and consultancy and is based on considerable experience of practices in the field.


The course provides opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of practice or 'formative' assignments. Each module has one or more formal or 'summative' assessments which are graded and count towards the overall module grade.

Assessment methods include coursework assessments such as critical reflections, portfolios, critical evaluations, projects or business plans.

A typical formal summative assessment pattern for the course is:

  • 1 x critical reflection 
  • 2 x portfolio
  • 1 x critical evaluation
  • 1 x project or business development plan


You will receive feedback on practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to support learning and you are encouraged to discuss it with personal academic tutors and module tutors as appropriate.

We aim to provide you with feedback on formal course work assessments within 20 working days of hand-in.

Programme Specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document.


Where could it take you?


The top-up degree places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement. The modules have been chosen and structured to support the development of more sophisticated independent study skills during this final year of the honours degree. One optional module, the Research Project is the opportunity to demonstrate the extent of your study skills development.

As an alternative, the Social Enterprise module provides you with the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills from your learning to a social enterprise development opportunity. Moving on further into masters level study would be an appropriate next step for some students. In addition some pathways provide excellent routes to progress to qualified teacher status.


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 the academic year 2021/22 is £9,250 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

International students

The standard tuition fee for full-time international students registering in the academic year 2021/22 is £13,100 per year.

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.

If your course offers a placement opportunity, you may need to pay for a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check.

How to apply

How do you apply?

Advancing Practice BA (Hons) Top Up Degree 

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.



Get in touch

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

The Learning Institute Recruitment and Admissions Team