Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator)

Adult Skills & Training

Date (from)


Awarding body


Full Time - Please contact us for next available date



Course introduction

This programme will prepare you to become an Early Years Educator, enabling you to work with children from birth to five years old. You will also gain knowledge relating to children aged five to seven years.

You will undertake a pre-study programme that comprises the following three components:

  1. Caring for Children and Young People – Level 2 Certificate – Distance Learning.
  2. Skills workshop at the College.

You may then progress to the main programme, which will comprise:

  1. Level 3 Diploma for The Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator).
  2. Level 2 Functional Skills/GCSE Maths and English (if not already achieved).
  3. A minimum of 12 hours a week voluntary work or employment in an Early Years Environment.
  4. Assessor observations in the work environment.

Why choose Brock for Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator)?

You will study within the Early Childhood, Health Studies and Higher Education department at Brock, under the supervision of experts who are highly qualified in the field of Early Years.

The teaching team has published numerous academic articles and advised on various Early Years issues. They have also won an Innovation Award for the quality of their teaching.

From April 2021 any adult aged 24 or over who wants to achieve their first full Level 3 qualification, will receive full funding under the government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee initiative.

Importantly, a Level 3 qualification is equivalent to a technical certificate or diploma, or two A Levels.

Once you have completed the Level 3 Diploma you can choose to study degree level Early Childhood qualifications with us, which are validated by the University of Chichester.

Teaching & learning

A typical day will comprise a Level 3 Diploma session and a Level 2 Functional Skills session.

Your teachers will draw on the latest research through a variety of blended methods, including direct teaching, problem-solving sessions and activity-based learning.

This programme will take 34 weeks to complete.

Course structure

This programme is structured around three themes:

  • Theme 1: Health and wellbeing 
  • Theme 2: Legislation, frameworks and professional practice 
  • Theme 3: Play, development and learning for school readiness

Minimum entry requirements

You must be employed for a minimum of 12 hours a week or be undertaking voluntary employment in an Early Years setting (0-8 age range).

You must also pass an interview with the College’s Early Childhood team.             

Additional requirements:

  • You should have the support of your employer (unless you are self-employed).
  • You should be able to communicate clearly and accurately in spoken and written English.
  • You must hold or obtain an enhanced DBS certificate.

How will I be assessed?

To gain this qualification you must: 

  • Attend College one day a week on a Monday from 9:15-2:30pm.
  • Pass all 23 mandatory units.
  • Complete a longitudinal study. 
  • Complete a minimum of 350 hours work.

Information & support

Placement/ Employment

Access to a work environment is essential for achieving this qualification. You will be required to show evidence of having worked a minimum of 350 hours.

You will also need support from a professional within the work environment who will complete professional development records and act as your mentor. In addition, you will be observed in the workplace by an assessor from the College.

What can I do with this qualification?

Upon successfully obtaining this qualification you will gain your licence to practise. You can then progress into various job roles in the statutory, voluntary or private sectors.

For example, you could become:

  • A practitioner in an early years setting.
  • A practitioner in a primary school reception class.
  • A pre-school worker.

There are also progression opportunities to study at Brock on one of these degree programmes:

Level 4/5 Foundation Degree Early Years

Level 6 BA (Hons) Early Childhood

If you wish to progress to Early Years Teacher Status, the Postgraduate Certificate in Education, or School-centred Initial Teacher Training following your degree, you will need to hold grades C/4 in GCSE Science, Maths and English. Providers of these courses will not accept Functional Skills qualifications.

Back to search results