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Glyndwr University, Wrexham

Early Childhood Practice

UCAS Code: G3B2

Foundation Degree in Arts - FdA

Entry requirements

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About this course

Course option


Full-time | 2021


Early childhood studies

This foundation degree considers the child and childhood through the areas of sociology, education and psychology. At the same time it draws upon the National Occupational Standards for Early Childhood to ensure the content is vocationally relevant.

This course:

is delivered online so can be studied in the comfort of your own home around work and life
combines academic study with work-based learning
develops higher-level learning within both the institution and the workplace
is offered on a full-time or part-time basis
is designed to enable students to study alongside their working hours, allowing a student studying full-time to meet their work commitments.

Study in the comfort of your own home, with the flexibility to fit study around your work and life commitments.
Want to expand your knowledge around working with children? Childhood studies combines the subjects of education, psychology and sociology to give you a multifaceted and fascinating view of the child, childhood and families.
Join an engaging course which values communication and support. We use chat forums, e-mail, skype, telephone and Moodle messages to keep in contact with students and our tutors are hands-on, and readily accessible.
We offer Saturday study days for students to get together and work with tutors face to face (optional).
We have an experienced, friendly and supportive team who fully understand the challenges of balancing study with family and work commitments.
We welcome students from outside the UK, with course materials and assignments written to enable students to bring their own context and experiences to the course.


• Understanding the Child and Childhood.
• Understanding Child Development and Learning
• Learning and Development in Practice (Part 1): This module aims to identify the domains which constitute children’s learning and development and to analyse the range of resources, methods, activities to successfully support these areas within early childhood practice. It will consider the curriculum frameworks, legislation, guidance and policies as they apply to practice and the role of the practitioner in supporting children, parents and other practitioners in an effective environment.
• Safeguarding Children:
• Academic Skills for Practitioners.
• Reflecting on Practice.

• Leadership in Practice: This module aims to explore the nature of leadership in early childhood practice and considers the key issues of leadership, teamwork and management in the early years. You will critically evaluate leadership theories and current perspectives on the distinctive features of leadership within early childhood practice including equal opportunities and children’s rights.
• Communication for Leadership: This module aims to explore the centrality of effective communication skills for practitioners working with children in the early years, and to develop an effective knowledge and understanding of the unique features of communication processes, systems and structures essential for leadership in working with children, parents/carers, key people, and a range of multi-disciplinary professionals. You will investigate and evaluate the concepts, values, and principles of communication in relation to best practice in the early years, and develop an understanding of how to monitor and evaluate your personal communication for leadership, your own communication style and performance, in supporting and maintaining professional relationships with others.
• The Playing Child: This module aims to explore the role of play in children’s lives considering historical and contemporary concepts of play and the playing child. You will investigate the foundations and principles of play practice to enable you to identify appropriate strategies and interventions to support the needs and preferences of children, to create spaces and places for children’s play, and develop an understanding of the management of children’s ‘risky’ play.
• Exploring Research Skills: This module aims to examine the role of research in childhood practice, including an understanding of its importance to innovation and future practice.
• Leading Safe Practice: The aim of this module is to allow the practitioner to understand and competently lead in aspects of health and safety within early childhood practice.
• Learning and Development in Practice (part 2): This module aims to take the practitioner further into an exploration of learning and development. It will consider the role of planning, observation, assessment and recording in relation to a curricular framework and also the role children and families should take within this process. The module will consider the role of play as a means to support children’s learning and development, specifically in relation to number and language skills. Finally, it will critically analyse the role of the environment in relation to a child’s health and well-being and the implications for practice.

The information listed in this section is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal academic framework review, so may be subject to change.

Assessment methods

The assessment tasks, set over the duration of the programme, are designed to develop and build upon a wide range of personal and professional skills, whilst strongly reinforcing links between theory and practical application. The assessment methods chosen have been designed to reflect the changing role of the professional, their ongoing academic achievement, as well as embracing the need for evaluation and reflection throughout.

All assessment at foundation degree level have an academic and work-based element. A number of the assessments consist of multiple components especially at the beginning of level 4. This enables students to work on and receive feedback on shorter written pieces at the beginning of their studies and to quickly develop key skills.

Within the foundation degree the main assessment types are:

Assessed Discussion
Case Study

Coursework enables the team to introduce more variety into the assessment process. For example in ‘The Playing Child’ the students are introduced to an online ‘scrapbook’ through which they are able to present understandings and applications of play in practice appropriate to a specific audience of their choosing, for example, practitioners, students, or parents/carers. It allows for more creative ways of providing explanations that enhance the audience’s understanding in respect of the meaning of play, classic and contemporary theories, the benefits of play for development and learning, and the role of play in the curriculum.

High quality feedback and feedforward is provided to students studying online to enhance their overall achievement. Students will be provided with written feedback and/or feedforward for each piece of work and have an opportunity to discuss this with their peers and tutors. Feedback is presented in a way that allows students to see how their academic work is progressing throughout the year and to easily view the comments of all tutors in a single Moodle space. This allows students and tutors to track progress and engage in additional support where needed. The FdA Early Childhood Practice will be delivered online using Glynd?r’s virtual learning environment – Moodle. This is an easy to use self-contained website which enables students to access the course materials, tutors and other students across their programme. We actively encourage communication and have a thriving community of students online who share their experiences of working with children in a variety of roles. We use a wide range of tools for keeping in touch including, online conferencing, chat rooms (forums), e-mails, messaging and telephone/Skype.

All programmes are designed to offer flexibility to fit study around family and work commitments, however students work within a course structure to encourage motivation and completion. The materials for each session are covered over a set period to enable students to develop their own study patterns i.e. daytime, evenings, weekends. Each session will engage students through a variety of tools from reading to video, podcasts, screencasts and exploring the web. Students will also be engaged in discussion around the session topics using a variety of chat forums, blogs and/or online conferencing.

The programme team recognises that face to face contact with students is important for some students to feel a sense of belonging to the University. Therefore all students are invited to attend three, one day Saturday study days throughout the year where they will be engaged in workshops (linked to module content) and have a chance to meet other students and members of staff. These study days are non-compulsory and content covered during the day is recorded as a video and shared with students online. Wrexham Glynd?r University is committed to supporting our students to maximise their academic potential.

The Uni

Course location:



School of Social and Life Sciences

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Childhood and youth studies

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