Early Years/Childcare

Head of Vocational Studies
Ms M Turrell


The Level 3 Applied General Certificate for Early Years, Childcare and Education is equivalent in size and rigour to an A Level and as such contributes to entry requirements for higher education. It is aimed at post-16 students who have an interest in childcare and early years. This qualification is ideal if you want to develop your knowledge and understanding in areas such as the role of the child care practitioner, human development, relevant legislation and frameworks, and play and learning. It is also recommended that you complete a work placement as part of this qualification in a nursery setting, primary school or something similar.


To gain the certificate you will need to complete 5 internally assessed units and two externally set and externally marked assessments. This qualification will provide you with a theoretical base from which knowledge and understanding of theory and concept can be applied, explored and established.


Unit 1: The role of the early years, childcare and education practitioner (internally assessed).

Unit 2: Human Development from conception to 19 years (internally assessed).

Externally set and externally marked scenario based short answer examination covering the content of units 1 and 2: (externally assessed).


Unit 3: Key legislation, policy and procedures.

Unit 4: Statutory educational frameworks.

Unit 5: Play and learning. (internally assessed)

A synoptic assessment will be undertaken at the end of Year 13 which is an externally set and externally marked extended piece of writing covering aspects of all five units.


You must complete a portfolio of evidence for all of the units listed above achieving a minimum of a Pass grade for each one. In total there will be 5 internally assessed units that will be graded Pass, Merit or Distinction. There will be two externally assessed and externally marked units, again these will be graded Pass, Merit or Distinction.


This qualification will prepare and assist you to progress to higher education, as well as apprenticeship courses such as an Advanced Apprenticeship for Children and Young People’s Work Force or Early Years Educator, which leads to vocationally related employment in early years and education with a licence to practice. It can also lead to employment roles such as:

• Assistant in children’s centres.

• Practitioner in day nurseries.

• Practitioner in nursery schools.

• Practitioner in reception classes in primary schools.

• Pre-school worker.


5 grade 9-4’s GCSE or equivalent plus English at grade 4.