Early year's provision has changed significantly over the years. Today effective early learning and childcare experiences are recognised as the key influences to future life chances and achievement. The focus of this course is to develop a reflective professional workforce to continuously improve quality practice and acquire the practical abilities required of a practitioner in the sector.
At HNC level, you’ll be expected to engage in research, academic writing, referencing and evidence based practice.
For entry to this course you’ll need:
- A real interest in the Practitioner role, working with children and families.
- A minimum of two relevant Highers, including English at Grade C or above and ideally National 5 Maths at Grade C and above OR a relevant course at SCQF Level 6 or equivalent such as:
- NC Higher Early Education and Childcare
- NC Higher Health and Social Care
- SQ Social Services: Children and Young People (or equivalent)
- PDA Education Support Assistance
- Relevant sector experience of a minimum of 20 days in a formal early learning and childcare or school setting.
- To include a detailed personal statement on your early learning and childcare work experience, demonstrating how you’ve taken the lead in planning curriculum experiences with children and young people.
- To go through an interview process, including engaging in a group activity and an individual written case study task, requiring prior research around aspects of child development.
- A satisfactory reference.
- Eligible to be a member of the PVG scheme.
If you don’t have formal qualifications, but have relevant work experience in a formal early learning and childcare or school setting, then we’ll also consider you for a place, so please call us for a chat.
This is a demanding course which will give you a deep understanding of the professional role of an Early Years Practitioner. It will help you develop the essential knowledge and skills you’ll need to work in early learning and childcare settings.
Each week you’ll spend 2 days in college and 2 days on a placement in an early years setting or primary school, working with the staff team.
Here’s just some of what you’ll be doing:
- You’ll explore the frameworks and guidance available for supporting children and young people’s play, learning and development in childhood practice settings. You’ll develop observational skills in practice and assess children’s needs to inform curriculum planning.
- You’ll look at care in contemporary society, exploring the contribution sociology makes to professional practice. You’ll investigate the complexities of human development through psychological theories and how life experiences can affect development, behaviour and Additional Support Needs. You’ll also focus specifically on the skills and strategies necessary to facilitate children’s development in language, literacy and numeracy.
- You’ll learn about health, wellbeing and safeguarding issues; current legislation and policies; preventative and protective health measures; and the practitioner’s role in safeguarding children and young people.
- Through your placement, you’ll look at promoting effective communication with children and colleagues, and through observation, records and reports; and promoting health, safety and security within a care setting.
You’ll also have the chance to:
- Prepare for the practitioner role on your placement, going on educational trips and visits.
- Learn from current practitioner guest speakers and other related stakeholders.
When you successfully complete this course, you’ll have the choice of:
- Moving onto HND Childhood Practice
- Moving on to BA Childhood Studies at UWS (direct access to Year 2)
Seeking to start your career in:
- A breadth of Early Years Practitioner roles (age range 0-16)
- Diverse roles working with children and families across the sector, including ASN support roles.
Some candidates have also progressed to Primary Education Teaching, Social Work, and Community Learning and Development.