Primary Education

BA single honours Primary Education with Foundation Year 2020/21

Year of entry

A number of our degrees are also offered with an additional foundation year (Year 0). Whether you are a school-leaver or someone considering returning to study but don’t have the entry requirements for your chosen subject, a foundation year course may be just what you’re looking for.

A foundation year is the first year of a four year programme which:

provides an introduction not only to study at University but also to your chosen subject offers you a highly supportive environment where you can develop the self-confidence, knowledge, skills and understanding for further study.

Following the Foundation Year you will go on to explore areas including:

  • child development and behaviour
  • philosophy and sociology of education with links to social justice
  • teaching and learning across the curriculum
  • planning and assessment· inclusion, safeguarding and special needs
  • professionalism and leadership.

This course forms part of a suite of Initial Teacher Education courses at Canterbury Christ Church University. We provide a significant proportion of the teachers in the South-East of England, with a particular emphasis on Kent and Medway. Teachers from Canterbury Christ Church University work in a wide range of education settings and schools across the country and the wider world. The University is committed to training the next generation of outstanding teachers.

The BA (Hons) Primary Education offers you the opportunity to develop the key skills, knowledge and understanding required to meet the relevant professional standards required to enter into a career in teaching. During the course, a particular emphasis is placed on critical reflection, to help you to combine your understanding of theory and research in education with your professional practice. Canterbury Christ Church University will recommend to the Department for Education and the National College for Teaching and Leadership that successful students be awarded Qualified Teacher Status.

The BA (Hons) Primary Education will enable you to become a generalist primary classroom teacher, supporting you in reaching the National Standards to be a Qualified Teacher (QTS). You will also gain an Honours Degree. During the course you will gain a strong understanding of children’s learning and development, alongside experience of teaching the curriculum.

If you choose the Mathematics Specialist pathway, you will also be prepared to become a specialist teacher of primary mathematics, who leads mathematics across the school. You will study primary mathematics in depth, exploring the most effective ways of teaching mathematical ideas. This will lay the foundations for a position as mathematics specialist or subject leader at the beginning of, or later in, your teaching career. You will also gain a strong understanding and experience of teaching other subjects.

On successful completion of the course you will graduate and be recommended for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). Following the award of QTS, and the successful completion of the Newly Qualified Teacher year, you will be qualified to teach the whole of the primary phase.

Our three year primary education course will inspire you to take up a career in primary teaching. We provide an almost unparalleled range of learning opportunities for you in schools and in other educational settings, including optional opportunities to engage in overseas study visits. Our students are highly sought after by local head teachers, because of the depth of knowledge, creativity and professionalism that they bring to teaching.

  • Do you want to undertake your degree in Primary Education on a course that is very highly regarded by current students and our school partnership for its quality of provision, care, support and guidance?
  • Do you have a desire to make a positive impact on a child’s life opportunities?
  • Do you have the ability to motivate and engage children?
  • Are you committed to continuous self-improvement
  • Do you want to acquire a deep understanding of how children learn and of the primary curriculum?

If you’ve answered yes to these important questions then join us as a Canterbury Partnership Teacher! The BA (Hons) in Primary Education leads to an honours degree and the professional qualification of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), enabling you to begin your teaching career as a newly qualified teacher (NQT) equipped with the necessary subject knowledge, skills and understanding to start your career as a primary practitioner.

‘The students on this course are a pleasure to work with. Because we work with them for three years, we are able to help them gain in depth knowledge, skills and confidence in their teaching and build really strong professional relationships in a range of educational settings. Their enthusiasm and commitment to primary children never ceases to impress me.’
Tracy Parvin, Programme Director

Through an integrated course of academic and professional partnership practice learning, you will be provided with access to the relevant knowledge, skills and understanding that should enable you to demonstrate a deep understanding of children’s development and the potential to apply this in your own classroom teaching. In addition to this, you will be encouraged to develop a strong knowledge of the primary curriculum and will be inspired to teach in innovative ways that have the prospect of exciting and motivating children.

If you choose the Mathematics Specialist pathway, you will explore the learning of children from the early years and into Key Stage 3. There will be a focus on in-depth learning and mastery of mathematical ideas. A range of approaches, manipulatives and mathematical images will be critically examined.

The BA (Hons) Primary Education course provides you with the opportunity to be actively involved in your own learning and development. You will study academic disciplines specific to teaching and learning and spend time on professional partnership school placements. This combination will support you in learning to become a creative and flexible teacher practitioner. You will also be supported in your transition into teaching and learning in Higher Education, and also for the transition between the levels of study that are experienced as you progress through the degree.

The principles underpinning primary education are introduced and you will be encouraged to develop a personal philosophy and understanding of how a child learns and develops. There is also an area of study dedicated to developing the knowledge, understanding and practical skills that are required to support the teaching and learning of pupils as they develop through the primary age range, recognising the holistic needs of children and how to support these in teaching and learning.

The professional partnership placement is a developmental and progressive experience that evolves over the three years of the course; observation and collaborative teaching is expected before progressing to solo class teaching. This allows scope for reflection and time to develop a range of appropriate teaching styles and strategies.

Work experience

Professional placements are built into the course, there are also opportunities to engage in school based tasks and projects beyond the professional placements.

Other information

We have a wide range of specialist guest speakers from schools and other institutions who come in to talk to our students.

This course can also be studied over four years with an initial foundation year (Year 0) for those without the formal entry qualifications. It is designed to provide you with the grounding you need to progress on to this degree.

Year 0

You will take 5 core modules plus one optional module. Optional modules will be offered subject to cohort size and you may choose to take a module which relates to your overall degree choice.

Optional module choices are made in the second semester and become the last module taken.

 However, you are not locked into the choice of overall course but may choose to change pathways at the end of the Foundation Year (Year 0). Alternatively, you may choose to take a Certificate of Completion and apply to another degree course, subject to entry criteria.

Core modules

  • Introduction to Education
  • Applied Literacy, Numeracy and Science Skills for Education
  • Communication and Academic Skills for Higher Education
  • Personal and Career Development
  • Introduction to Human development through the Lifespan

Year 1

Childhood (20 credits)

You will learn about the nature of childhood.  The module will explore the theories of child development and learning for children aged 0-12 years. You will explore the significance of language, culture, play and the building of positive relationships. Through doing this, we aim to develop your understanding of the nature of childhood, its diversity and complexity.

Inclusion (20 credits)

This module will develop your understanding of various aspects of diversity and inclusion. Themes explored will include special educational needs, mental health and well-being, gender, socio-economic factors, children with English as an additional language and ethnicity.

Rethinking Teaching, Learning and Assessment (20 credits)

You will explore a range of exciting teaching strategies in order to consider the teacher you wish to be. Through evaluating key concepts linked to teaching, learning and assessment, you will be able to devise learning opportunities that will challenge and stimulate children.

Exploring Curricula and Pedagogy (40 credits)

You will begin to appreciate the rich interconnectedness of curricular subjects. The module will equip you with an understanding of building curricula. This will be linked to how curricula are delivered and experienced across the primary age phases.

Drawing on shared practical experiences, you will relate each experience to subject areas. You will consider how children’s learning can be expressed in terms of subjects as well as holistically.

Professional Placement (20 credits)

You will undertake a professional placement in a school or Early Years Setting, relating to your chosen age phase. This will allow you to develop an emerging knowledge, understanding and the practical skills of teaching and learning.

You will be introduced to key elements of teaching and learning across the curriculum. The module aims to develop your understanding of professionalism in line with current professional standards. You will gain an understanding of how important critical reflection is for your development as a teacher.

In order to proceed successfully into year two of the degree, you need to have passed all of the first year modules (this includes the placement module).

Year 2

Schools of the Past, Present and Future (20 credits)

You will explore the historical and political context of teaching. Political ideology, political practice and education legislation will be examined. You will reflect on the socio-economic and cultural contexts of educational change through looking at key political developments in national and global education. Through this process, you will be equipped to make links between historical and contemporary developments in education. Reflecting upon your beliefs and values will help to develop your future professional career in school.

Social Justice and Education (20 credits)

This module will help you to make links between society and education in the primary school context. You will become aware of how social justice factors, such as race, poverty and gender, impact on your pupils and their educational outcomes. There will be an exploration of government and educational policies and their potential impact on society. Understanding of these factors will enable you to become an inclusive teacher.

Alternative Learning Experience (20 credits)

This module offers you opportunities to experience local, national or international educational settings. Looking at theory and practice, you will explore education and learning in the wider context. The module will include a placement in a non-mainstream primary setting. Examples of previous placements include museums, hospital schools, prisons, Montessori, forest schools and refugee centres. Some students have chosen to experience education in other countries such as Spain, Ghana and Thailand. This module will broaden your understanding of the wider educational landscape.

Subjects within the Curriculum (40 credits)

Following on from Year 1, you will develop deeper knowledge and understanding of the curricula, and teaching and learning. You will further your understanding in English and Mathematics. Science and two further curriculum subjects will also be studied. Through understanding the principles of planning, you will begin to see links between subjects.

Professional Placement (20 credits)

You will undertake a professional placement in a school or Early Years Setting, relating to your chosen age phase. This will allow you to develop an emerging knowledge, understanding and the practical skills of teaching and learning.
You will further your understanding of key elements of teaching and learning across the curriculum. The module aims to develop your practice in line with the Teachers' Standards. You will reflect critically on children's learning and your development as a teacher.

Year 3

Researching Professionalism and Leadership (40 credits)

The module aims to explore contemporary professional issues and identities of the teacher. It aims to do this through an in-depth understanding of, and practical engagement with, research. You will explore professional perspectives on teaching and learning and how leadership within the classroom and wider school environment impacts upon this. 
You will look at:

  • key aspects of effective leadership
  • how to effect change
  • engagement in innovation and calculated risk to transform learning
  • the leadership and motivation of those around you.

These issues will be examined by research informed practice, looking at different research methods appropriate to education, and an understanding of ethical considerations.

Beyond Curriculum and Policy (20 credits)

You will develop your understanding of the current context of teaching English and mathematics across the primary age phases. Current research, policy and statutory and non-statutory requirements will be explored. With this deep subject knowledge and understanding, you will be able to discuss beliefs and principles which shape you as a teacher.

Curriculum Innovation (40 credits)

In this module, you will further your knowledge of a wide range of subjects across and beyond the curriculum in all relevant age phases. This will give you the confidence to try out new ideas, innovate and take risks in your teaching and curriculum development.

Professional Placement (20 credits) 

In your final placement, you will build upon your previous experiences to show how you meet the current professional standards for teaching and develop an awareness of the complexity of education. Through your time in school, you will take increasing responsibility for children's learning. Your placement will be supported by school-based mentors and University tutors.

You will plan innovative learning opportunities, promote behaviour for learning and ensure every child's needs are met. Through this experience, you will develop an understanding of the responsibilities of the qualified teacher.


We continually review and where appropriate, revise the range of modules on offer to reflect changes in the subject and ensure the best student experience. We will inform applicants of any changes to the course structure before enrolment.

You will develop the key skills, understanding and knowledge to begin your career in teaching in the best possible way. A number of our students continue to develop their academic progress by registering for postgraduate study such as a Masters degree.

A student from our BA (Hons) Primary Education degree became the first ever winner of the National Education Opportunities Network (NEON) Student of the Year award in 2015.


Tuition Fees for 2020/21 have not yet been finalised. Course webpages will be updated with Tuition Fee information once these have been agreed.

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any Library Fees and Fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

Course specific costs

Field Trips For optional/elected trips the student may need to cover all or part of the cost of entrance/venue fees, travel, accommodation, board (food/drink), vaccinations or Visa and insurance costs (for international trips), if applicable

Travel and food/drink.

For international placements there may also be accommodation, vaccination, Visa and Insurance costs.

Text books Most core texts are available in the library as a physical copy or available through the e-library. However, there may be some core texts that students wish to purchase or that are recommended for purchase by the programme.
DBS Checks There is a charge made for this process of £52
Occupational Health Checks Students may need to pay their GP to complete the appropriate section of the Occupational Health Questionnaire.
Qualifications Checks These checks may incur costs (i.e. if a student needs to request a new certificate, pay for admin to process the checks, postage etc.)
Professional Skills Tests

All students on Initial Teacher Training courses are required to pass the Department of Education Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy prior to commencing the course. The first three attempts at the professional skills tests are free of charge. After the third attempt, the test centre will make a charge for each subject retaken. 

Travel to campuses and other teaching locations (particularly for use of specialist facilities)

The student will need to travel to University facilities, as well as any taught sessions in schools, swimming pools and other locations as timetabled.

The dedicated mini buses which travel to Canterbury sites, such as Augustine House, Hall Placement and Polo Farm may be utilised in some instances and these are free of charge for students.

Clothing / Kit Students would need to purchase their own clothes for PE sessions including trainers and comfortable clothing.
Learning Materials

Students may wish to purchase their own materials, such as teaching resources.

There are materials available in sessions and for students to borrow from the University Library. However, if should wish to buy their own, they will need to cover the cost of this.

Social Events & Conferences

Sometimes there are social events which students are invited to book on or attend to enhance their experience. These events can also be an opportunity for students to network with their peers and/or specialists in their field. These can be held on campus or be held and run externally- either in the UK or Internationally.

For optional events, students will be expected to pay for travel, accommodation (if applicable), and any entrance/booking fees.

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

The course is normally completed in three years. You will complete 120 credits during each academic year. Normally a 20 credit module carries a study time of 200 hours. 50- 60 hours of this is completed through university contact days or directed tasks. The remaining 140-160 hours per 20 credit module consists of self-directed self-study that is completed in your own time.

Academic input

Many of the tutors are senior lecturers and have studied at Masters and Doctoral level, and a majority are also experienced classroom practitioners.

Surprising terms

You will need to pass all school based placement modules in order to be recommended for Qualified Teacher Status. Should you not pass a school based placement module, this may potentially delay progress between levels. It is important to be aware that this might have an impact on how long it would then take you to complete the course.

Travel costs to placements are self-funded. Unfortunately, we are unable to confirm this cost as it is dependent on the length of time of the placements, your personal travel arrangements and the location of the school.

As part of the Undergraduate Initial Teacher Education Scheme, this course has special regulations.

The Code of Student Professional Conduct is relevant to you as you are pursuing a course that leads to a professional qualification.

You will be expected at all times to demonstrate that you understand and uphold the Teacher’s Standards, as published by the Department for Education.

You will be assessed through assignments and your teaching in school. The assessments for taught modules will include a wide range of tasks including written essays and assignments, examinations, oral presentations, action research tasks and portfolios of evidence of your learning.

The assignments will all be designed to help you investigate in detail particular aspects of teaching strategies, educational theory or research which will have relevance to your teaching, and to reflect on how theory has informed or can inform your practice.

Your professional learning in school or other education settings will be underpinned and informed by an assessed record of development which will demonstrate your ability to evaluate and analyse your own practice in the contexts of both the schools and other settings in which you are working, and of national policies and curricular requirements.

Canterbury Christ Church University will recommend to the Department for Education and the National College for Teaching and Leadership that successful students be awarded Qualified Teacher Status.

All teaching sessions linked to practical curriculum subjects, such as science, music, PE, art and Design Technology, take place wherever possible in contexts which replicate the kind of environment and equipment you would expect to see in a primary school.

Professional Placements are provided by partnership schools in and around Kent and Medway, and further afield in East Sussex, Essex and South East London.

A number of our tutors are key members of professional subject associations and professional subject bodies, such as the Association of Science Educators, United Kingdom Literacy Association and National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics.

One of our tutor team holds a National Teaching Fellowship (2014).


Full-time study

Apply via UCAS


Full-time study

Need some help?


For advice on completing your application please contact the Course Enquiry Team:

Tel: +44 (0)1227 928000
Tel:+44 (0)1227 928000  (0)1227 928000


Contact our International Team

Fact file

UCAS course code

  • X320 Primary Education with Foundation Year

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 4 years full-time including a Foundation Year


  • September 2020

Entry requirements

  • Applicants are invited for an interview as they are applying for a parent programme that has specific entry criteria. If you do not already hold these you will need GCSE English, Mathematics and Science at grade C or above (or equivalent) and to have passed the DfE Professional Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy before you complete the Foundation Year.

    You will also need to be assessed as fit to teach, including an occupational health and Disclosure and Barring Service check (DBS) check during the Foundation Year.

    Further information on these requirements are available from admissions.



Last edited 18/07/2019 13:51:00

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Last edited: 18/07/2019 13:51:00