- Full Time: 3 years
- Full Time: €3,290 per year
International Students: €9,250 International
This three year full-time course is an exciting venture as the field of early years expands. In a society in which the education of young children is recognised as being the foundation of their future learning, career opportunities demand well-qualified practitioners who have a sound understanding of the learning needs of young children.
Set in the heart of an enriched multi-cultural city, students will have the opportunity to study a course where diversity is celebrated.
An Honours degree in Early Childhood Education Studies provides aspiring early years workers with access to a range of careers working with young children and lays the foundation for progression towards the Early Years professional qualification.
This course is appropriate for those wanting to pursue a career working with young children. It focuses on early years issues and examines in detail how theory, relating to child development, influences everyday practice.
Students on this creative course will be supported throughout so that they can achieve their aim to become a reflective practitioner. An integral part of the course is placement and there is a strong link made between theory and practice through directed tasks.
Assessment is varied and there is the opportunity for students to demonstrate skills, knowledge and understanding through a range of tasks.
Alongside the early childhood studies element, students are asked to focus on their own personal development as a learner as they progress through higher education towards employment. In this strand, there is a focus on developing employability skills including those of communication, leadership, teamwork, presentation and reflection alongside personal academic progression.
In the final year, students are supported in making decisions about career opportunities in the early years field and the final module offers a palette of options which facilitate transition into employment.
The course aims to develop students to become confident, well-educated and reflective practitioners with the skills to respond to developments in the field of early years education.
It lays excellent groundwork for professional development and career choices and encourages participants to develop their intellectual capabilities specifically related to Early Childhood Education.
Critical reasoning and analytical skills in relation to philosophical, sociological and psychological concepts of early childhood education are crucial to the successful completion of the course so that graduates are equipped with the skills, knowledge and understanding to work effectively in the modern workplace.
The course will enable students to develop an understanding of child development, issues of early education and the underpinning theory relating to these through a programme of compulsory modules.
A working knowledge of the key statutory documents used in early years settings will be studied and students will become familiar with statutory requirements for early years practitioners.
Children's learning in the early years and the factors that influence their development – particularly within an urban multi-lingual, multi-faith context – will be examined and placements during the course will enable students to gain experience of working with children aged 0-5.
The programme offers a range of teaching methods, including taught sessions, presentations, workshops, seminars, tutorials, independent study and research. Throughout the course, students will be expected to develop a positive approach to learning and will plan, review and take responsibility for their own learning through personal development planning (PDP). This is carried out to develop an individual's skills for future employment and career management.
- The current early years framework- 30 credits
- Exploration and play -30 credits
- Holistic development -15 credits
- Professional practice in early years- 45 credits
- Working with families -15 credits
- Children's learning stories-15 credits
- Developing a research project -15 credits
- Creativity in early years -30 credits
- Reflection in practice - 45 credits
- Contemporary issues in early years-30 credits
- Professional philosophy-30 credits
- Towards employment-15 credits
- Leadership and management in the early years research project- 45 credits
This is a coursework based degree programme. There are a number of assessments, including essays, reports, journals, case studies, presentations, independent study and research. One option on the Towards Employment module currently has a timed essay as the assessment.
Although the placement itself is not assessed, there are tasks and activities to be undertaken while there, which contribute towards the assessment of a module. There is a structure of formative assessment to encourage reflection, evaluation and editing, embedded in modules.
There will be placements during the course in which students will gain experience of working with children aged 0-5. Second year students are supported when they negotiate their own placement. There will be opportunities, in modules, to visit a variety of early years settings to consider specific elements of early years practice.
After your studies
There is a PGCE route into teaching at the University. Entry to this programme is through application to GTTR. There is no direct entry to the programme. Graduates can also look to pursue an MA in Education or apply for postgraduate courses in teaching, social work, counselling or nursing.
The Early Years Professional qualification can be gained post-degree.
This course enables students to progress into a career in the early years sector. This could be into childcare management positions within the children's workforce, for example, in children's centres, extended schools or childminder networks.