BA(Hons) Early Years Education (Top up)

Entry year
Course code
School of Education and Childhood
One year
Full-time, starts September
Programme leader
Dr Sarah Gillie

Please note that new student recruitment to this course has been suspended for the September 2024 intake. Applications for 2025 should be made through UCAS from September 2024.

Page last updated 24 April 2024


Study our exciting one-year standalone BA(Hons) Early Years Education course (HE level 6) and gain the skills and knowledge you'll need to develop your management or leadership career in an early years setting or school.

Why study Early Years Education?

Research has established the importance of offering high-quality education from birth. On the Early Years Education degree, we'll consider the ideas that are central to children's lives and explore how we can offer positive, productive and successful learning opportunities to young learners. We'll also explore aspects of teamwork and leadership.

Why UWE Bristol?

You'll gain an in-depth insight into how key theory and principles inform early years education practice in the UK and explore dialogic approaches to learning and teaching. You'll also have opportunities to develop your skills in research communication and leadership, as well as in debate and critical thinking. The course also includes opportunities to hear from different early years professionals.

Where can it take me?

Our course will prepare you to work towards leadership or managerial roles in an early years setting within international contexts.

This is an ideal route into a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). Please note that you'll need a PGCE if you wish to obtain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) (an appropriate visa may be required).

As this is a 'knowledge-only' pathway, if you don't already have a qualification recognised by the Department for Education, then this route will also be required if you wish to be included in the adult:child ratio in a UK Early Years Foundation Stage setting.



You'll study:

  • Debates in Early Childhood
  • Emerging Languages and Identities
  • Inquiry Project
  • Teaching, Learning and Professional Practice in Early Years
  • The Development of Reasoning.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we'll inform you.

Learning and Teaching

You'll learn through seminars, workshops, lectures, and immersion days, where you'll attend various partner schools.

The course will be delivered by our highly-experienced and qualified teaching team as well as from industry experts and practitioners/teachers.

See our glossary of teaching and learning terms.

Study time

This is a full-time, one-year course including approximately 12 hours of module sessions per week. You'll be required to attend most weekdays. We ask that you also allow a further 12-24 hours per week for independent study.

You'll need to be motivated and able to learn independently, and we will provide you with the support and help you need to study effectively on your own.


We use a range of assessment methods across the course including presentations, portfolios, inquiry projects and reflective accounts. These are designed to reflect the professional and academic expectations of your future study and employment.

We do not use written exams as part of our formal assessments.

Learn more about assessments.



On our course, you'll have the opportunity to attend immersion days at our partner schools in Bristol. This will offer you the chance to visit a range of early years settings and hear from local professionals in practice.

These experiences will give you the chance to observe and work with children to ensure that your learning is robustly underpinned with practical understanding.

Study facilities

Our modern, purpose-built facilities offer high-quality teaching rooms, excellent IT facilities, equipment that can be loaned out, and an open learning area.

Most of your course materials, books and other reading will be available online.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.

Take a Virtual Tour of the Education and Teaching facilities and see what's on offer here for you.



An excellent range of options for all of the Bristol campuses and the city centre.


A stunning city for student living with all the qualities to make you want to stay.

Sports, societies and activities

There is more to your experience here than study. Choose to make the most of it and try new things.

Health and Wellbeing

We provide support in the way you need it.

Campus and facilities

Discover our campuses and the wealth of facilities provided for our students.


Careers / Further study

The skills and knowledge you'll gain on this course will fully prepare you to step into a leadership or management role within a school or early years setting.

Please note that this course is a 'knowledge-only' pathway, which means you will need further training to be classed as qualified in an Early Years Foundation Stage setting.

For further information please visit the UK Government website.

If you wish to study further, there are some courses which may interest you, including our Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) International Early Years.

Our award-winning Careers Service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.

Learn more about our graduate destinations.


Supplementary fee information

Learn more about funding.


Typical offers

  • Contextual tariff: See our contextual offers page.
  • English Language Requirement:

    International and EU applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with no component below 5.5 OR overall score of 6.0 with no more than one component at 5.5.

    *The University accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section.

Entry requirements

  • GCSE: Grade C/4 in English Literature or Language, or equivalent. We do not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Literacy and Numeracy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.

You should hold an HND or Foundation Degree (or equivalent), or have successfully completed a course which is equivalent to the first two years of a UK honours degree (240 UK credit points or 120 ECTS credits) in Education or a related subject discipline.

How to apply

Read more about international applications and key international deadline dates.

For further information