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BA (Hons)

Early Childhood Studies with Psychology

Understanding the individual psychological needs of a child

X3C8UCAS code 3yrsfull time 1yrplacement option

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

This degree allows you to develop a psychological understanding of the lives of young children (0-8) in the contemporary world. You will study themes such as education, sociology, psychology, health, welfare and social policy to develop your vision of the way future care education may appear. A third of your studies will be in the science of contemporary psychology studying mind and behaviour, analysing human choices, emotions, motivations and beliefs through essential methods of research and data analysis.

You will be able to shape your study by selecting options from a wide range of subjects within the school of education and psychology. The option units are delivered by lecturers who have undertaken research and practice in the specialist area you want to develop skills in.

This course includes the opportunity to engage in work experience and to do a placement year in this country or abroad.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Examine the current issues and theories for young children, alongside insights from clinical, cognitive, social and developmental psychology to gain an insight into behaviour.
  • Benefit from the support of a personal and learning development tutor.
  • Develop employability skills through modules, work placement opportunities and involvement in volunteering at local pre- schools, nurseries or charities.

On our National Student Survey students say that “Feedback is prompt and lecturers are approachable”, and that “Lecturers really engage us and share their work experiences in their field.”

What opportunities might it lead to?

Studying in the School of Education and Childhood Studies can lead you onto a variety of career pathways, some of which may require postgraduate study. You will be able to apply for a range of roles in education, social care and health related areas. Please note that this course does not provide Qualified Teacher Status or accreditation from the British Psychological Society.

Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:

  • early years teaching/ training
  • family support service
  • management in early years
  • healthcare and health promotion
  • social work
  • work in the voluntary sector
  • environments that support children and young people with special educational needs and disability such as speech and language therapy
Georgia Carter-Brown, BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies with Psychology 2017

My experience of studying at the University of Portsmouth was a really enjoyable one, I met many people who became my friends and feel that my course developed me as a person. The thing that stood out the most to me was the amount of support I received from all of the lecturers on my course, they were there throughout my 3 years of study helping me achieve.

Georgia Carter-Brown, BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies with Psychology 2017

Want to start this course in 2017?

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Key Facts

UCAS Course Code:
3 years full time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
The UCAS tariff for 2017 entry has changed. See how this affects your tariff score A LEVELS
96-120 points from 3 A levels or equivalent. See full entry requirements

We accept UCAS points from other qualifications. See full details and English Language qualifications

96-120 points from 3 A levels or equivalent. See full entry requirements

We accept UCAS points from other qualifications. See full details and English Language qualifications


UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2017/18 entry: full time: £9,250 p/a*

International students
2017/18 entry: full time: £12,600 p/a**

*Tuition fee may be subject to annual increase.
**Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 5566
School of Education and Childhood Studies
Programme specification


Education, Childhood and Youth Studies

Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:

  • Hands-on opportunities to work in a relevant educational setting
  • The support available to all students
  • The flexibility of unit options that enable you to tailor your study to your own interests

Browse all courses in Education, Childhood and Youth Studies

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

Year one

In each year you will spend two-thirds of your study time in Early Childhood Studies courses, with the remaining third in units exploring psychology. In your first year, you will study this programme:

  • Child and Youth Development
  • Equality and Diversity in Practice
  • Introduction to Psychological Science
  • Introduction to Social Psychology
  • Perspectives of Early Childhood Education


Year two

In your second year you will consolidate the work of your first year, while making choices to focus your degree on a specific area of interest. You’ll also have the opportunity to experience paid or voluntary work with children and young people as part of the Faculty electives programme.

  • Approaches to Psychology
  • Contemporary Issues in Psychology
  • Global Childhoods
  • Just Playing? 
  • Research with Children and Young People
  • One Option from
    • Children’s Literature
    • Development of Learning
    • Digital Natives
    • Gender, Race and Education
    • Professional Practice in Early Childhood Education and Care
    • Learning from Experience (LiFE)

Year three

Your third year will give you the opportunity to specialise through your choice of dissertation topic and a further range of optional units.

  • Dissertation / Major Project
  • Promoting Early Learning (0-3) 
  • Developing and Extending Young Children's Thinking for Learning
  • Two Options from
    • Disability: Theory, Research and Practice
    • Educational Psychology
    • Language and Communication
    • Psychology of Human Sexuality

Teaching and Assessment

We pride ourselves on the quality of teaching and student support on this course. Learning takes a variety of forms including group-based activities, seminars, tutorials, individual and group presentations, poster presentations, project work, elearning activities and lectures.

How are you assessed?

We use a range of assessment methods to ensure that you reach your academic potential. Here’s how we assess your work:

  • essays
  • group and individual presentations/projects
  • tests
  • a 10,000-word dissertation
Joy Chalke

Tutor's view

Joy Chalke
Early Childhood Studies

The BA Early Childhood Studies provides students with the opportunity to engage with the subject from a range of national and international perspectives which support a deepening knowledge and understanding of the constructions of the young child in the world today.

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Monitor Facilities & Features

Study in SECS

The School comprises a body of enthusiastic staff with a range of expertise in the professional and academic sectors. We offer a welcoming learning environment, in a location near the heart of town, the student buildings and the sea front.

3rd Space

A social learning space for you to study or meet up with friends. Small and large groups, or individuals looking for a quiet space can find a quiet area which can be screened off. Alternatively, grab a coffee or play a game of pool in between lectures.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Recommended texts:
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.

General costs:
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Where next?
Where next?

You will be well prepared for a career working with children, either in school settings or other government or private institutions; your degree may also lead you onto a variety of career pathways, some of which may require postgraduate study.

Graduates of courses in the School of Education have gone into roles as early years’ practitioners, children’s centre workers, play workers and youth workers, and are well placed for roles developing rapidly in response to current government initiatives in both areas. You may also train to teach, to gain Early Years Professional Status, study as Speech and Language therapists or undertake a Masters degree in Social Work.

Please note that this course does not provide Qualified Teacher Status or British Psychological Society accreditation. It is possible to top up credits to gain full BPS accreditation at a variety of institutions throughout the UK. See www.bps.org.uk for more information.

Work experience

Employment boosting opportunities
Employment boosting opportunities

This course allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option, which lets you earn credits toward your degree for work/research placements, volunteer roles or internships undertaken alongside your studies. The option gives you the opportunity to enhance your employability skills, to reflect on the ways in which you've done so, and to learn to express this to potential employers.

Career planning

Career planning
Career planning
6.04 minutes

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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