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Childcare and Education Level 3

This course is a gold standard qualification that develops the needs of today's child care workforce. The broader range of services for children and families requires highly qualified, multi-disciplined professionals. It is designed to meet your needs as a care worker and the needs of your employers. This new qualification is part of a government framework that ensures the qualification will be recognised and valued nationally.


This course comprises two parts: in your first year, you will work towards the technical Certificate in Childcare and Education and if successful progress on to the Diploma in year 2. Both courses are recognised nationally as a gold standard requested by employers. Following the Diploma course, you can continue higher study at degree level leading to careers in teaching, nursing or social work r go on to study our Foundation Degree in  Early Years.


Part of the course will require training in placements where you will develop your practical skills in caring for and teaching children. You will also gain a wide knowledge and understanding of children in the early years of their life.


All students (16-18 year olds and 19+) on level 3 vocational and technical programmes will study two qualifications over the duration of their two-year course. An example of this is BTEC students will study for a 90 credit qualification in the 1st year. Upon successful completion, they will be able to progress to the 2nd year and study a diploma/extended diploma qualification.


Exam Board: CACHE



Search your university and career options if you study Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) Level 3
  • What will I study and learn?

    The course enables learners to gain the knowledge and experience which allows them to work with children from birth to 5 years. You will study topics such as child development, the value of play and health. You will be required to attend training placements in order to gain practical skills. The course is divided into two stages and upon achievement it is intended that you can access higher education or enter the workforce as an early years educator.

  • How is the course assessed?

    The course is assessed through a variety of methods: by external and internal written assignments, research projects and evidence of competence in practical skills and knowledge when working with children and 1 external exam.

  • What skills will I need for the course?

    You will need a genuine interest and enthusiasm for working with young children and have a mature attitude and be motivated and organised. Some experience of caring for young children such as babysitting or school work experience would be useful.

  • What formal entry requirements will I need?

    Minimum requirements - 5 GCSEs at grade A*- C/9-4 including English and Maths and a subject relevant to your chosen area of study at grade 4


    A recognised Level 2 Childcare qualification at Distinction/Merit/A*-C/9-4 as well as GCSE English and Maths at grade 4.

  • What could the course lead to in higher education or careers?

    This qualification enables you to practise in almost every childcare and education setting including nurseries, crèches, pre-schools, schools and children's centres. It could also lead to roles as a home based childcare worker or nanny. You may progress to higher level qualifications for example teaching, nursing, the foundation degree in early years and other higher courses.

    The diploma attracts UCAS points which means most universities will accept it as an entry qualification for degree level study.

  • Are there any costs involved?

    You will need to obtain a Police Check from the DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) to determine suitability as a 'fit' person to work with children. The DBS charge is currently about £44 and the check is done before the start of the course. You will need to buy some textbooks at a cost of approximately £70 and you will have to pay the weekly travel costs to your training placement.

  • How do I apply for this course?

    To apply, please click on the Apply button at the top of the page.

  • Are you aged over 19?

    Students aged 19 or over on 31st August directly preceding their academic year may be required to pay tuition fees for that year of study. Advanced Learner Loans may be available for students studying at Level 3. If you are aged 19-23 as at 31 August and this is your first full Level 3 you may not have to pay fees.

    Students who are 19-24 years old with Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP) issued by the Local Authority are not required to pay course fees (ie tuition fees are free). Students will be required to provide a final copy of their EHCP provided by the LA as evidence.

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