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  • Start date:   August 2023
  • Level of Qualification:   SCQF Level 7
  • Course Type:   Full-time


This course is for those who want to work as early learning and childcare practitioners. The award will allow you to work with children and young people aged between 0 and 18 years.

You will learn about the values, principles and laws relevant to a career in the early years sector. After you have completed the course, you can register with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) at practitioner level.

  • What the course includes

    The course includes: 

    • Lifespan Development Theoretical Approaches 
    • Support for Play Learning & Development 
    • Supporting Contemporary Families
    • Health, wellbeing and safeguarding 

Why choose this course

You will gain work experience from work placements, and practical experience in our purpose-built playroom and outdoor classroom.

Entry requirements

  • Two Highers (one must be English, communication or written English on core skills profile) at grade C or above, or level 6 childhood practice qualification and Higher Childcare and Development or equivalent 
  • Foundation Apprenticeship in a related subject and Higher English at grade C or above
  • Experience in a childcare/related setting
  • IT skills (for assessments) desirable

We welcome applications from people with relevant life and work experience.

An Enhanced Disclosure Scotland application is required. This will be carried out with the college if a place is offered. 

If English is not your first language, ESOL Level 5 is an entry requirement for this course.

  • Where it leads

    Education: HND Childhood Practice or degree-level courses. West Lothian College has an exclusive articulation agreement with advance standing into year 2 of the BA (Hons) Education Studies (Primary) at Queen Margaret University.

    These spaces are limited and applicants who submit a competitive application will be considered.

    Employment: In childcare with statutory, voluntary or private organisations including schools, nurseries, creches and family centres. Previous students have found employment with West Lothian Council and several private nurseries.


    2021-22 saw the greatest number of students gain university places with 21 students applied, received 47 offers from Universities across Scotland. 

    17 progressed to HND Childhood Practice, and a high percentage of the remaining students went on to work within the local authority or the private sector.  

Interview arrangements

If we invite you for an interview, plan to be in college for around two hours. The interview consists of:

  • Course information
  • Interview
  • Short written task

Please bring evidence of any qualifications and/or any employment references.

Fees, Finance & Funding

There may be help available to assist with your study related costs. Impartial, confidential help and advice on financial matters is available from the Student Funding Team - including Bursaries, Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA), Student Awards Agency for Scotland, Student Loans Company and student support funds. Click here to find out more

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Take that next step in your career and apply for this course today. If the course is not yet open for applications, feel free to ask any questions by clicking make an enquiry.