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Technical Certificate in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) - Level 3Apply Now »

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Level: 3

Location: The RoundHouse

Years: 1

Adult Loan Amount: 2882.00****

Interview: Y

Course Summary

This qualification is recognised throughout the UK by both employers and universities as a high level qualification.

When undertaken as a two-year programme of study with the Year Two Advanced Diploma, it is widely accepted for entry to universities and for employment as a fully licensed practitioner.  

As well as classroom-based learning, a large part of your studies will be spent on a work placement where you will develop your practical skills.

Entry requirements

You must have attained five GCSEs at grade 4 or above, including English Language and Maths (grade 4 or above).

You must be willing to provide evidence for an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check which will have to be self-funded.
You also need to provide two professional references.

Course Content

You will study at College for three days a week and will spend the other two days on placement within an Early Years setting. At College, you will cover units centred on four key themes:

  • Health and wellbeing
  • Legislation, frameworks and professional practice
  • Play, development and learning for school readiness
  • Professional development
During your work placement, you will be required to carry out activities and tasks which include child observations, activity plans and reflective diaries.

How will I be assessed?

Each unit is assessed separately through a variety of methods including portfolios, assignments, presentations, displays and a controlled assessment (a piece of work completed under exam conditions over a period of time).

Your practical skills will also be assessed in your work placement.

Are there any additional costs or specialist equipment required?

You need flat shoes and smart trousers and you should purchase a placement top from College.

You should also have an A4 ring folder, pens and paper. In addition, you will need to pay for your DBS check.

From time to time there may also be educational visits, which would incur a (subsidised) cost.

What can I do after this course?

Further study

The course forms the first year of a two-year programme of study. After completion of the Certificate, you will need to enrol on the second year (Diploma) part in order to gain a licence to practise in an Early Years setting, or to progress to university.
Once you have completed both years and gained both the Certificate and Diploma, you can progress to degree-level programmes in subjects such as Primary School Teaching and Children’s Nursing. The course also provides a route to the Foundation Degree in Children’s and Young People’s Services which is delivered at Derby College in partnership with the University of Derby. The Foundation Degree gives you the opportunity to specialise in a Teaching Assistant or Early Years pathway. You could also consider the Foundation Degree in SEND.
After completing this Certificate in Year One and then gaining the Diploma in Year Two, you will be fully qualified to work with children in Childcare and Early Years settings in roles such as:
  • Early Years/Foundation Stage Practitioner
  • Special Educational Needs Support Worker
  • Nanny/Home-based Child Carer
  • Children’s Centre Practitioner





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This course is run at the Roundhouse Campus

About the Roundhouse »

James Bates

James Bates

Foundation degree “great stop gap” for prospective teacher James

Former DCG student James Bates plans to train as a primary school teacher once he has finished his top up degree at the University of Derby.
James, who is 23 and from Belper, progressed to a degree in Early Childhood Studies after getting a distinction in his foundation course in Children and Young People’s Services at the Roundhouse.
James said  taking the three-year foundation course had been a “great stop gap” between school and university.
He added: “A lot of what I learned at Derby College keeps cropping up on my degree course.
“If I’d gone to university straight from school, I think I would have struggled with the academic writing. I know I would have found that side so much harder.”
James did an apprenticeship in school sports before College, and because his foundation course was part-time, carried on working at a local primary school three days a week. He was also able to work for the Rural Derbyshire School Sport Partnership which promotes sports in schools across the Dales and Hope Valley.
James is continuing to work as a Teaching Assistant and for the partnership while studying for his degree. As part of his College studies, James wrote an essay on the impact of Covid-19 on the role of  teaching assistants.

A lot of what I learned at Derby College keeps cropping up on my degree course.

If I’d gone to university straight from school, I think I would have struggled with the academic writing. I know I would have found that side so much harder.



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