Course Overview

This course is ideal for learners who are interested in learning about the early years sector as part of a balanced study programme. It is intended as an Applied General qualification, and is equivalent in size to 1 A level. It supports access to a range of higher education courses, possibly in the early years sector, if taken alongside further level 3 qualifications. No prior study of the sector is needed, but students should normally have a range of achievement at level 2 in GCSEs or equivalent qualifications.

Who is this course aimed at?

Because the Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Children’s Play, Learning and Development is generally taken alongside other qualifications as part of a two ­year programme of learning, students will be able to choose a wide range of degree programmes to progress to. The qualification is intended to carry UCAS points and is recognised by HE providers as contributing to meeting admission requirements to many courses. The courses available will depend on the other subjects chosen, but for students interested in a course linked to the sector the following are possibilities:

  • BSc (Hons) in Paediatric Nursing, when taken alongside, for example, Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Applied Science and A level Psychology
  • BA (Hons) in Childhood Studies, when taken alongside, for example, A levels in English and Psychology
  • BA (Hons) in Primary Education, when taken alongside, for example, A levels in English Literature and History.
Students should always check the entry requirements for degree programmes at specific HE providers. Your qualification may also support an application to an Early Years apprenticeship.

What will you learn?

Students taking this qualification will study the following three mandatory units:

  • Children’s Development
  • Development of Children’s Communication, Literacy and Numeracy Skills
  • Play and Learning.
Students will complete 50 hours of work experience in the sector. Students are able to select one option unit, which supports their progression to specialised degree programmes within the sector and covers areas such as:
  • Keeping Children Safe
  • Children’s Physical Development, Care and Health Needs
  • Working with parents and others in Early Years
  • The Early Years Foundation Stage

BTEC Level Three

Course Leader:
Andy Petch

Course Length:
Two Years

Entry Requirements:
No prior study of the sector is needed, but students should normally have a range of achievement at level 2 in GCSEs or equivalent qualifications including English, Maths.

How is the course assessed:
You are assessed by BTEC exams and also by assignments set by the college.