Early Years Care and Education FdA


If you want to take your career as an early years professional to the next level, we’ve got the perfect course to get you there.

This Foundation degree (FdA) in Early Years Care and Education is for current and aspiring early years practitioners who want to get professional recognition with a university-level qualification. You’ll work with professionals to learn skills and knowledge that’ll serve you in a rewarding career helping children to realise their potential.

The 3-year course is part time and has around 4 hours a week of teaching in term time. So you can complete your studies alongside your job. 

After the course, you'll be more effective in your current role as an early years professional. You could also go on to do a Bachelor's degree such as our BA (Hons) Education Studies or use your Foundation degree to do training that leads to Qualified Teacher Status such as Early Years Teacher Training.

What you'll experience:

  • Develop your skills and knowledge to become an effective early years professional, through practical activity and the study of theories and contemporary issues within education
  • Learn in supportive study groups, alongside other Early Years professionals from different backgrounds
  • Study alongside your existing role, whether you’re in a general or special educational needs setting, in a school or other education institution
  • Be taught by staff with heaps of experience, using dynamic and relevant teaching methods to help you get the most out of your studies
  • Discover practical ways to put the knowledge and skills you learn to work
  • Have the option to begin the course in year 2 if you already have sufficient experience or qualifications
  • Study with us at our main campus in Portsmouth or at one of our partner colleges: City College Southampton, St Vincent's College (part time) or Stanmore College (full time)

What you'll study:

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits. You'll study modules worth 80 credits a year in the part-time mode.

Year 1

Core modules in this year include:

  • Curriculum planning and legislation 
  • Inclusive practice in the early years 
  • Practice and pedagogy

Year 2

Core modules in this year include:

  • ICT - Early years and development 
  • Safeguarding children 
  • Use of information in decision making 
  • Working with families 

Year 3

Core modules in this year include:

  • Cognitive and language development
  • Practitioner based enquiry 1 & 2
  • Social, emotional and mental health development

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • case studies
  • reflective reports
  • essays
  • presentations
  • group work

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

Careers and opportunities

Completing this Foundation degree opens up many career options.

What can you do with an Early Years Care and Education FdA?

You could progress to a relevant Bachelor's degree, such as BA (Hons) Education Studies. You could also go on to do teacher training through PGCE, SCITT or Early Years Initial Teacher Training programmes.

After you finish the course, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.

FdA, FdA Award
September Start
Part-time, Full-time Study Mode
3 years Duration

Entry Requirements For This Course

A minimum of one Level 3 qualification, for example a relevant Early Years NVQ. Applicants are to be working in either a voluntary or paid relevant educational setting for a minimum equivalence of one day a week. Functional Skills Level 2 in English and Mathematics, Adult Literacy and Adult Numeracy level 2 or GCSE Mathematics and English language at grade C/4 or above, or equivalent. All applicants are subject to interview.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

University of Portsmouth in Pictures

Upcoming Open Days at University of Portsmouth


Undergraduate Virtual Open Day

31 Oct 2020, 09:30 AM - 31 Oct 2020, 15:00 PM University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth Guildhall, Guildhall Square, Portsmouth, PO1 2AB
Visit Website
Our Virtual Open Days in July bring the University of Portsmouth experience from our island city campus to wherever you are. Get a feel for why Portsmouth is the place for you - from courses and careers advice, to accommodation, sports and societies, and much more. Sign up now to save your place - we’ll give you access to recordings and other useful info if you can’t make it.

Undergraduate Open Day

28 Nov 2020, 09:30 AM - 28 Nov 2020, 15:00 PM University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth Guildhall, Guildhall Square, Portsmouth, PO1 2AB
Visit Website
Come along to a University of Portsmouth Open Day and see for yourself what we can offer you. Tour our beautiful seaside city campus, see which halls of residence you could be living in, attend a course talk where you can speak to lecturers and ask our current students anything you'd like to know. Give me a university that will truly support me. Give me the University of Portsmouth.

Latest Updates from University of Portsmouth

Location of University of Portsmouth