Foundation Degree (FdA) Education and Care // Undergraduate

Course overview

This Foundation Degree provides a professional development opportunity for those working with young people in nurseries, primary schools, youth centres or similar settings.

The part-time format of the course allows you to fit it alongside a job within education and care.

The course mixes academic rigour with practical skills that you can apply directly to your workplace. Modules include ‘The Social Context of Childhood’, ‘Professional Practice in Safeguarding of Children and Young People’ and ‘Social Policy and Children's Well-Being’.

There is also a strong emphasis on personal development with specific modules on ‘Study and Self’ and ‘Thinking Skills, Creativity and Problem Solving’.

In the final year you will design and carry out a project on a topic of personal interest that can be related to your day-to-day employment.

Course content

Modules on this course include:

Year 1 (Higher Education Certificate Level 1) (national level 4)

  • Study and Self
  • Thinking Skills, Creativity and Problem Solving
  • Human Development, Transitions and Change
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Understanding the Curriculum
  • The Social Context of Childhood

Year 2 (national level 5)

  • Social Policy and Children's Well-Being
  • Professional Practice in Safeguarding of Children and Young People
  • Working Relationships
  • Learning Technologies
  • Project Design and Development
  • Project

Entry requirements

In addition, you should have at least two years’ relevant work experience, and should be employed in a role related to the education and care of young people.

  • BTEC Level 3
  • NVQ Level 3
  • CACHE Diploma in Education and Childcare
  • GCSE grade C or above (or equivalent qualifications) in Mathematics and English. If you have studied for a GCSE which has a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a grade 4 or above
  • A satisfactory enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check that has an issue date within 3 years at the start date of the programme.

If English is not your first language, please refer to the University of Sunderland English Language requirements:

    Teaching and assessment

    Foundation Degrees combine academic study with work-based learning and you have the opportunity to learn in the workplace as well as at college.

    Teaching methods include practical sessions, lectures, discussions, case studies and workshops. We also encourage you to develop independent study skills.

    Assessment methods include evaluation of work experience, reports and presentations.

    Progression and careers

    You may progress to higher-level university Degrees in subjects such as Early Childhood Studies or Teaching (on completion of a full honours degree). Students may progress to the year 3 'top up' degree BA Honours in Education & Curriculum Studies at the University of Sunderland with further opportunities after this to progress to teaching and early years practitioner status.

    Awarding body

    This programme is offered by Tyne Coast College working in partnership with the University of Sunderland. The award that you will receive will be from the University of Sunderland.

    Download course specification

    Student numbers

    In order to help ensure that the student experience is maintained at a high level across the life of partnership programmes, there is a minimum of 12 students required to enrol in year 1 of each programme offered by TyneMet College in partnership with the University of Sunderland in order for it to run. In the event that this minimum is not reached, the University reserves the right to either close this programme and withdraw offers made on it or, if appropriate to the programme, apply conditions to the programme in order to allow it to run with reduced student numbers. If the programme is closed, the University will use reasonable endeavours to help affected students switch to a suitable alternative programme or alternative HE provider if they wish to do so. If a decision is taken to apply conditions to the programme in order to allow it to run with reduced student numbers, consultation will take place with affected students. Conditions may include things like studying some of the programme at a different venue or merging study with other similar programmes where there is overlap. If these conditions are not acceptable to all students, the programme will close.

    Further Information


    Covid-19 has challenged the delivery of all educational and professional programmes.   The University of Sunderland have established emergency professional standards which have helped us to develop an effective approach to your programme of study. This will include a blend of face-to-face and online teaching.


    Our experience has shown that this method opens new learning opportunities for all, enabling you to develop graduate skills such as time management, self-care and workload prioritisation, with support from the academic team and the wider University services available to you.

    Theoretical lectures and pre-session reading will be delivered and made available via Microsoft Teams.

    In the meantime, please contact the Programme Leader if we can offer any further guidance.

    Programme leader contact: Douglas Hallam

    Programme leader contact details:

    * The University of Sunderland has a wide range of scholarships on offer. Find out more.

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    FutureMe in the North East

    The North East Collaborative Outreach Programme (NECOP) has launched its FutureMe programme of activity and support to increase the number of young people from the North East progressing to higher education.

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    Course detail
    Classification Undergraduate
    Course Mode Part-time
    Level Undergraduate
    Duration 2 years
    Location Coast Road Campus
    Annual fee £5500.00 *
    Start September
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