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Child & Family Studies Foundation Degree (FdA) Level 5

Run in association with the University of Bedfordshire, this degree-level course gives you a comprehensive understanding of child and family issues, drawing on knowledge and theory from the fields of psychology, childhood development, working with families and professional skills and practice. The course allows you to remain in your child and families employment whilst you continue to study allowing you to relate theory to practice and reflect on your learning throughout the course.

Valided by, and leads to an award of, the University of Bedfordshire


My ultimate plan is to become a primary school teacher so I looked into all the different routes I could take to achieve this.  I came to an open day at the College and spoke to the tutors about this Foundation Degree and realised it suited my learning style, plus I get to put what I learn into practice with the work placements it offers.  It also helped that the College course was £6,000 a year, rather than the £9,000 a year that universities charge.

I like the whole course but particularly enjoy my work placement as a teaching assistant at Orchard and Shepherdswell Academy in Milton Keynes.  I was especially pleased to get a placement here because it’s my old primary school and some of my teachers are still there! From September they’ve offered me a paid teaching assistant post, so it’s turned out really well for me.

Next year, we’re going on a trip to Kenya with the course.  We’ll be teaching in schools, helping with sports activities and building new facilities.  Plus we’ll get a week’s safari when we’re there – it will be amazing!

After I finish my Foundation Degree, I’m planning to top-up to a full Honours degree at the University of Bedfordshire.  I’ll then take my Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) to become a fully qualified teacher.

Alexandra - Child & Family Studies Foundation Degree

Entry requirements

You will need:

  • 48 UCAS tariff points with 32 points from one A-Level qualification OR
  • 48 UCAS tariff points from Early Years BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma OR
  • Childcare CACHE Level 3 Diploma OR
  • Early Years Care & Education NVQ Level 3 OR
  • An equivalent Level 3 qualification OR
  • Relevant work experience with young people under 18 years old, or families, children and babies.

You will also need to undertake a paid or voluntary placement in a relevant setting for the duration of the course, two days (14 hours) a week. You will be responsible for arranging your own placement and this is an essential part of any offer made. We welcome applications from mature students who will be considered individually on experience rather than qualifications.

Course content

The course seeks to develop your’ personal, professional and study skills in areas such as multi-agency working and working in social or child care. Employability is also core to the Foundation Degree and is part of the teaching programme at every level in units such as the Level 4 unit Reflective Learning, the Level 5 unit Managing People and Career Development in the Human Services. As part of the Managing People and Career Development in the Human Services unit we have a student residential which consists of two days away including an overnight stay on a Friday and Saturday. You are advised to save around £100 for this.

This course will help you gain an in-depth understanding of the essential aspects of child development and welfare and equip you with the skills required to provide high-quality services for children, young people and families. Their rights, and the belief that they have equal access to services and life opportunities regardless of social difference, feature strongly throughout the course. You will apply knowledge to current practice.

Year 1

  • Child Observations
  • Families, Social Policy and Poverty
  • Applied Psychology
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Reflective Learning

Year 2

  • Managing People
  • Evidence Based Professional Practice
  • Applied experience with Young People
  • Multi-Agency Working
  • Beliefs, Expectations and Language of Youth

Assessment methods

A wide variety of study methods are used throughout the course and emphasis is on student centred inclusive learning. Teaching methods will include lectures, discussion, seminars, role play, group work, guided study and experiential classes. You will also be required to work independently using both College and University learning resources.

All units are assessed by a variety of methods, e.g. Written assignments, oral presentations, timed examinations and reflective logs. Students are expected to develop the skills of reflective practice and the writing of a reflective journal, and commitment to personal and professional development is a requirement of this Foundation Degree.

Further study and career options

On successful completion, you can progress straight on to the third year of a course delivered at the University of Bedfordshire, to achieve a BA (Hons) Child & Adolescent Studies, BA (Hons) Early Years Studies, or BA (Hons) Applied Social Studies degree.

Additional information

To enrol on this course you must apply through the University & Colleges Admission Service (UCAS) using the institution code BEDF B23 and the course code L990. Visit or call us on 01234 291000 for more information.

Course information & how to book

You will need to complete a UCAS online application form to apply for this course, available at The codes needed are located in the 'Additional information' section above. Please call the College on 01234 291000 if you have any queries about your application.

LengthStart DateFees per yearLocationCourse Code
2 years 29/09/2017 £6000 Cauldwell Street K1246

Part-time course already started?

Our upcoming 2017-18 Part-time Course Guide will be out in May.
You can request a copy via the form below...

Additional Learning Support
If you have a specific learning difficulty or disability, problems with English and Maths, are deaf or hearing impaired, or missing the essential skills needed to complete your course, our Additional Learning Support team are on hand to give you assistance whenever you need it.  Find out more.

Autism & Asperger’s Syndrome Support
At Bedford College, we are committed to developing the provision for students on the autistic spectrum, including Asperger’s Syndrome.  Find out more.

We have access arrangements in place to help students with disabilities or any other particular needs. Call us on 01234 291000 for more information.

Additional formats
Course information sheets are also available in large print and audio formats. Call us on
01234 291000 to order your copy.
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