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FdA Early Years Studies Foundation Degree (Level 5) — Part-time

Course outline

This course is designed for people working in the early years’ sector and wish to progress to work as a senior practitioner or on to an early years’ teacher training course.

It is a flexible, work-based programme, designed to allow you to continue to work whilst studying and has been developed in association with local employers and professional bodies. This sector-endorsed course is ideal to progress your career if you’re currently a childminder, teaching assistant in the foundation stage, nursery nurse, nursery manager or learning support assistant.

During the course, you’ll need to work for at least ten hours per week in an early years’ post.

A statement of support and commitment from your employer/ mentor stating that they will be able to meet the full range of roles and responsibilities in the workplace will be needed.

Modules may include:

  • Study skills and current initiatives
  • Personal development and professional practice
  • Play, children’s early learning and the curriculum
  • Anti-discriminatory practice
  • Observation and assessment
  • Child development and well-being
  • Safeguarding children
  • Meeting individual needs
  • Managing behaviour
  • Working with parents and carers to support children
  • The curriculum in action
  • Managing your professional role

The course will build on your existing knowledge of children’s development and learning, as well as developing your understanding of current policies and practice in early years’ settings. You’ll also acquire professional and practical skills such as planning, assessment and teamwork.

Nottingham College is proud to have been awarded the Teaching Excellence Framework Bronze Award for high quality student experience and outcomes. You can read more about this on the Office for Students website.

How to apply for this course

Apply online to start in 2024/25.

Want to find out more first?

Would you like more information? Email our HE team.

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Location Date Fees / reductions
111 Canal Street

Start: Monday 23rd September 2024

The tuition fee is per year.

Various bursaries are available for some Higher Education courses.

Tuition fee: £4,500

Course code: C000546 / Q003044


Foundation Degree in Early Years Studies FdA


3 years

Level Level 5
Entry requirements

You will need a minimum of 48 UCAS points from:

  • At least two A Levels at A2
  • BTEC Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • International Baccalaureate
  • Access to HE Diploma

A level 3 qualification in Early Years, Childcare and Education or Supporting Teaching and Learning is most desirable.

Other combinations of qualifications and experience will also be considered, as will Level 3 qualifications not currently listed on the UCAS tariff.

We would expect students to be working at (or to demonstrate competency at) Level 2 or above in English/literacy and maths/numeracy.

You’ll be invited to an interview and asked for suitable references.

Mature applicants with relevant professional experience and/or qualifications are welcome to apply.

Teaching & assessment

Your work will be assessed on a continuous basis through reports, presentations and essays.


You could continue your studies to obtain a full degree, and then, if you wish, progress to Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) or Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

Additional information

This course is validated by Nottingham Trent University.

Nottingham Trent University logo

About the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)

The TEF is a national scheme run by the Office for Students (OfS) that aims to encourage higher education providers to improve and deliver excellence in the areas that students care about the most: teaching, learning and achieving positive outcomes from their studies.

Learn more about the TEF