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FdA – Children’s Learning and Development

The FdA Children’s Learning and Development is designed for professionals already working, volunteering, or leading in areas within the children`s workforce. Students could be child minders; early years practitioners; support assistants working in either a mainstream or special school; teaching assistants; managers or advisors working in the early years sector with a focus on services for children aged 0-8 years and their families. Their employment could be in a diverse range of sectors, which may include supporting families in the community, working in family centres, or supporting children in schools.

Key Information

  • Course Level

    Level 5

  • Delivery


  • Duration

    2 Years

  • UCAS Code


  • Awarding Body

    University of Hull

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This on campus course aims to provide a balance of intellectual and practical skills – these students are integral to the on-going development of the early years’ workforce, nationally, regionally, and locally. Students will actively engage in research and enquiry, gaining a critical understanding of the processes within the development of services, enabling them to gain insight and understanding relating to how babies, toddlers and young children develop and how this can be supported.

Graduates of the Foundation Degree Children’s Learning and Development are advocates for babies, toddlers and young children and champion their rights. A central aspect of the programme is that students will gain the opportunity to examine various ways in which children and childhood may be understood and conceptualised through their understanding of the philosophies, beliefs, and attitudes that champion children’s rights. They will also consider the challenges and intricacies of multi-agency and multi-professional practices and reflect on this within their own professional context.

The high-quality learning experiences within the Foundation Degree for Children’s Learning and Development will ensure that students obtain a range of transferable skills needed for their successful career advancement. This is achieved through a two-way process, where the learning in an academic environment is applied in the work environment therefore academic study informs provision and practice.

There is a requirement to attend taught sessions one evening per week, as well as engage with online activities, as part of a blended learning approach.

Course Structure:

Level 4
Child Development [20 credits]
Play [20 credits]
Observation and Assessment [20 credits]
Planning Effective learning Environments [20 credits]
Celebrating Difference [20 credits]
Reflective Practice [20 credits]

Level 5
Children, Families and Communities [20 credits]
Safeguarding [20 credits]
Creative Critical Thinkers [20 credits]
Leading and Supporting in Professional Practice [20 credits]
Mathematics in Early Childhood [20 credits]
Research [20 credits]

All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time

Additionally, the programme will require approximately 8-12 hours a week of private study to access study materials and engage with wider reading and research.


This vocational award is a work-based course, where you’ll build upon your experience through modules in areas such as child development, safeguarding, creativity and critical thinking, and working in partnership with parents. Our on-campus sessions include lectures, as well as tutorials and seminars. The course also incorporates a great deal of group work, which will be an opportunity to share experiences with fellow professionals working in a range of settings. On this course you will be encouraged to become an active enquirer and participant in your own learning. Progress and achievement are assessed using a variety of methods, such as essays, case studies, ePortfolios, poster and oral presentations, research, and leaflet designs.

Applicants would usually require a Level 3 qualification in a work-related area and at least 2 years’ experience of working within the Children’s Workforce, for example, in a registered early year setting or in a school as a Teaching Assistant

Additional Requirements:
• A current satisfactory DBS Enhanced Certificate
• Practitioners are required to either be in paid employment or undertaking a voluntary placement for a minimum of 2 days per week. It will underpin practitioners’ experiences in the workplace through studying a suite of modules that will enhance and support career progression.

GCSE Requirements:
Grade 4/C in GCSE English and mathematics is desirable but not essential. If you do not have these qualifications, you will still be accepted onto the programme but would need to realise that future employment might require this.

English language requirements:
IELTS 6.5, with no component below 5.5 Writing, Speaking, Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

As part of this programme of study you will be required to have a valid enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. You will be required to pay the cost of this. A DBS must be in place before you start your placement. You may be able to supply an existing DBS but this must be within 3 years of issue.

This course enables you to build on your experience as an early year’s practitioner and develop new strategies for supporting children and working alongside colleagues and parents.

There is also an opportunity to progress to a year-long ‘top up’ course to turn your Foundation Degree into a BA (Hons). This will give you further opportunities for professional development, for example, going onto Teacher Training programmes or move into management roles.

Financial Support

UK students can take out a tuition fee loan to cover the cost of their course and a maintenance loan to cover living costs.

We also have a range of other financial support available.

Course Fees



Additional Costs

Your Tuition fees cover the majority of costs associated with your programme (including registration, tuition and assessment.)

There may be some extra costs that you might need to make or choose to pay for example:

– Books (you’ll have access to books from your module reading lists in the HE library, but you may want to buy your own copies
– Printing and photocopying)
– Trips and enhancement opportunities

  • A DBS check will be required, which you must pay for.


Apply or enquire about this course

To find out more and apply for this course, please contact us via the telephone number below.

  • Course code: X2C2
  • Institution code: N64
  • Campus name: University Campus Doncaster
  • Campus code: D

Apply on the UCAS website Make an enquiry Call 0800 358 7474

Information for EU Students

From January 2021, how you apply for a course will change. For more information, read the UK Government's guide for the UK points-based immigration system for EU students (pdf).

Visit our International pages for more information and contact details