module specification

SE4005 - Academic Skills and Professional Placement (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23, but may be subject to modification
Module title Academic Skills and Professional Placement
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Sciences and Professions
Total study hours 300
18 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
150 hours Guided independent study
72 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
60 hours Placement / study abroad
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   E-portfolio
Practical Examination 50%   Practical assessment
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year (Spring and Summer) North Tuesday Afternoon
Year North Monday Afternoon
Year North Monday Morning

Module summary

This module introduces and supports basic academic skills and is an essential professional practice requirement in enabling students to develop competency within the early years’ setting.  It is intended to enable students to begin to develop self-awareness in order to support and understand how personal values, attitudes, and qualities impact their future roles as early years practitioners.  The module will enable students to work with young children whilst understanding the importance of working in partnership with colleagues, parents and other professionals. The module will include an assessed practical placement leading to preparation for Professional Practice 2 which will support future employability in this sector. 

This module offers an introduction to academic skills and working with children between 3-5 years and aims to help students:
 Make connections between their learning across modules within the professional context of early childhood studies
 Reflect on personal value systems and begin to develop reflective practice
 Develop knowledge and an understanding of the need, through observation, to  plan, implement and reflect
 Consider the professional skills required within an early years’ setting including communication, teamwork, partnership with parents within the context of an anti-bias approach;
 Develop an awareness and understanding of the historical, social and political context of early childhood services and of the cultures, principles and values that underpin early childhood practice.
 Prepare students for placement experience by  beginning to engage with the application/exploration of  Level 3 Early Years’ Educator Standards

Prior learning requirements

Enhanced DBS Check
Students are expected to undertake 60 hours work placement providing for children in the birth to six age range as part of this module, normally in a group setting.


This module will give students the opportunity to work with young children between the ages of three and five years.  There will be an overview   of the importance professional practice and what the requirements are. Examining and reflecting on one’s value systems in order to accept children and families unconditionally will be explored.   The development of professional skills required to work in early year settings will be discussed and reflected upon, including: communication skills and teamwork, the key person approach, working in partnership with parents and using an anti-bias approach. Concepts such as starting from ‘the child’ and build on the child’s existing interests and knowledge will be explored in relation to the importance of observing, planning, implementation and reflection. There will be an introduction to the EYFS as it is the key document in professional practice. LO1,LO2,LO3,LO4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

This module is particularly for first year full-time students. Students’ knowledge and understanding of academic skills and professional practice 1 input will be through lectures discussions, seminars and practice.  The students will benefit from a blended learning approach through the use of WebLearn for supplementary materials, links to E-books, on-line discussions and self-assessment exercises such as quizzes and reflective tasks.

Reflection and discussion are key to teaching and learning.  This will be in the context of tutor-led sessions and experiential learning promotes their growing ability to act as a reflective practitioner.

Teaching and learning strategies and methods also focus on workplace skills and professionalism. Students undertake and reflect on observations in the workplace and weekly tasks and reflective exercises support increased knowledge and understanding. Observations, work-related tasks and the use of development planning tools support the growth of practitioners’ professional competence. 

The development of transferable skills in presenting evidence, arguments and points of view to a range of audiences, through a range of media, including the use of ICT such as e-portfolio also supports individual learning.

Placement requirements across all modules [including this module] equates to 240 hours/40 days over the academic year.  At level 4 this is usually undertaken as a 2 day per week at placement for 18 weeks plus a 1 week block placement [19 weeks in total].

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
1. Observe, plan, deliver and review their practice across the early years’ curriculum, taking account of children’s diverse family and cultural backgrounds
2. Consider  the values, principles and skills required to work as early years’ professionals and students within an anti-bias context
3. Explain the importance of working in co-operation and collaboration with colleagues, parents and other professionals
4. Demonstrate engagement and competency with professional practice in line with Level 3 Early Years’ Educator Standards.

Assessment strategy

Assessment A: An e-practice portfolio on a reflecting weekly on experiences and planned activities

Assessment B: A two way practical assessment will also be undertaken by in the setting in which the student is placed. Setting-based mentors and university supervising tutors complete regular observations, with formative feedback given on each occasion.  A final report is completed by the mentor and university tutor using the assessment criteria by grading students’ practice.


Basford, J., & Hodson, E., (2011) Successful Placements in Early Years Settings, London: Sage

Bertram, T., & Pascal, C., (2014) Early Years Literature Review but shouldn’t full details be given

Development Matters (2012)

EYFS (2017)

Musgrave, J., & Stobbs, N. (2015). Early Years Placements: A Critical Guide to Outstanding Work-based Learning. Early Years, Northwich: Critical Publishing.

McMahon, S., & Dyer, M., (eds) (2018) Work-based Practice in the Early Years: A Guide for Students, Abingdon: Routledge

Reed, M & Canning, N., (2012) Reflective Practice in the Early Years, London: Sage