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Children's Play, Learning & Development BTEC Level 3 National Diploma at Carshalton College

Course description

BTEC Nationals in Children’s Play, Learning and Development, has been revised to meet the requirements of the Early Years Educator (Level 3) Qualifications Criteria.

It has been designed for anyone over the age of 16 who is interested in exploring a career working with young children, or who wishes to understand more about young children’s development The National Diploma is equivalent to 3 A levels in size and confers Early Years Educator Status on learners.

Course content

Learners taking the Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Certificate or Diploma have to experience a minimum of three different placement settings. Learners must spend a minimum of 100 hours in one placement for each of the following age bands:

  • Birth up to 1 year, 11 months in a nursery or in home-based care
  • 2 up to 4 years, 11 months in nursery, pre-school or home-based care
  • 5 up to 7 years, 11 months with children who are in a classroom setting.

Up to 150 hours can be undertaken with children with additional needs in an older
age group

Entry requirements

Learners must have at least a grade C GCSE in four subjects (Maths, English and Science) being essential. Learners will need to show competence in both theory and practice, and will be asked to undertake an assessment in English and Maths working at a Level 2.

A clear DBS check is required.


To gain this qualification the learner will need to:

  • Take an external assessments and  will  also have to complete internally set and marked assessments. These allow learners to demonstrate a range of skills and ways of presenting information.
  • Complete at least 750 hours in a work setting, covering a range of different age groups.

Learners are assessed against whole learning aims (not individual criteria), therefore, learning aims must not be split. Pass, Merit and Distinction criteria included in each Learning Aim must be combined into a single task for assessment.

Learners will also need to complete a PDP, which is linked to the work setting for completion.

Future opportunities

Suitable for learners intending to progress into higher education (for example, in early years education, early childhood studies, teaching, nursing, social work, health studies).

Suitable for learners intending to progress directly into employment within the childcare sector, for example, as an early years practitioner or nursery nurse.

Suitable for learners who wish to explore specialist interests, e.g. different approaches such as Montessori and Steiner, cooking activities, or home-based care

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Carshalton College directly.

Last updated date: 25 February 2016
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