BA single honours Special Educational Needs and physical Activity WITH FOUNDATION YEAR 2020/21

Year of entry

The content of this course is currently being reviewed and is subject to change. Applicants will be informed of any changes that impact on the structure of the course.

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:

  • professional identity
  • health across the life span
  • physical and sensory development
  • from learning to labour
  • values, justice, participation and society.

The BA (Hons) Special Educational Needs and Physical Activity programme enables you to explore themes of social justice and human rights and the participation of vulnerable groups in society. There will be opportunities to engage in physical activities relating theory to practice to develop your understanding of growth and development, physical and sensory needs.

Whilst studying this degree, you will engage with theory and research in an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on the fields of education (including physical education), health, social policy, sociology, psychology, geography, history, human rights, social justice, politics, economics, anthropology, religious studies and philosophy.

You will study a degree which recognizes inclusion as an integral element of human rights and engages with the ethical issues involved in notions of a fair society. You will examine theoretical positions and identify the political, economic, historical and ideological variables that impact on civil and human rights and oppression in society.  

In addition to gaining specialist knowledge of specific areas of special educational needs and physical activity you will investigate the importance of social and emotional development and the notion of resilience as fundamental to health and well-being.  

You will develop your knowledge of strategies and professionalism when working collaboratively to support individuals with a diverse range of special educational needs throughout the lifespan. You will critically evaluate issues surrounding the models relating to disability and equality, within an ethos which promotes inclusion of individuals with specific medical and learning needs. 

The programme aims to provide you with a systematic understanding of the principal aspects of special needs, inclusion and physical activity and the ability to relate theoretical perspectives to policy and practice.  

It aims to enable you to think and work creatively and intellectually, to stimulate your research for useful knowledge to develop personal and employability skills by considering the complexities of working with individuals across the lifespan with alternative needs. In addition, studying on this programme will help you to develop a critical understanding of the importance of the human rights agenda and social justice and identify the political, historical, economic and ideological factors that impact on vulnerable individuals, groups or communities internationally and globally.  

The course offers a range of optional modules alongside specialist modules. These modules will enable you to acquire interdisciplinary skills and concepts to help you work across a variety of disciplines.

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

Optional module 

You will study 120 credits each year, in every level after your Foundation Year. 

Special Needs and Inclusion and Physical Activity is a multidisciplinary degree programme that consists of 18 modules, studied over three years. Modules for the degree usually contain the following options, subject to minimum numbers opting for the modules: 

Core Modules

Year 1

Person Centrered and Collaborative Practice (20 Credits)

The aims of this module are to ensure students develop a good understanding of the issues that surround discrimination, disability and equality in our society and of the concept of inclusion with a particular focus on children, young adults and their families. The history, psychology, economic and social dimensions of these issues will be explored, along with an analysis of their impact upon individual young children and their families.

Physical and Sensory Development (20 credits)

The aims of the module are to provide a broad overview of the features of typical sensory and physical development. The module will also explore the specific difficulties that can be experienced by children and young people who experience atypical physical and/or sensory development. 

Year 2

Representation and the Media (20 credits)

The aim of this module is to recognise the significant media impact and influence on students’ understanding of disability in contemporary society. The module will investigate disability theory as a framework for reconsidering, ‘normal’ and ‘abnormal’ and how this is portrayed through media and film.  Through an examination of media and film the module will identify fundamental issues arising from portrayal impacting on stigma, participation, access and representation.

Year 3

Managing the Inclusive Organisation (20 credits)

The aims of the module are to develop students understanding of the issues surrounding diversity and inclusion in a variety of private and public sector organisations. These include, but will not be limited to, legislation and best practice, interpersonal conflict and resolution.

Global Perspectives on Special Educational Needs and Inclusion Studies (20 credits)

This module will explore global models of special educational needs and inclusion studies. The content will examine global political, ideological, economic and social factors recognising global differences and embedded global inequalities. It will explore the terms of cultural relativism and ethnocentrisms. Students will be encouraged to use their knowledge of the United Nations Conventions of Human Rights in analysing global politics of inequality. 

Likely optional modules

Year 2

Perspectives of Autism (20 credits)

This module aims to provide students with knowledge of the theoretical, clinical and person constructs underlying Autism. Students will become familiar with current policy and legislation and will explore through reading, direct input and discussion issues of classroom pedagogy and social inclusion.  Students will identify, investigate and evaluate a range of strategies that are considered good practice to address the communicative, affective and cognitive characteristics associated with Autism.

Year 3

Cognition and Learning Difficulties (20 credits)

This module aims to give insight into the complexities of human cognition and learning and the impact of atypical cognition upon learning and development. The module builds upon previous knowledge about theories of learning. After developing students’ understanding of key theory and research related to typical cognitive development, the history, classification and terminology related children and young people whose cognition follows an atypical pathway will be considered. 

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.

Once you have completed your Special Educational Needs and Physical Activity degree, there will be opportunities for further study or employment with children, adults and families through social work or charity work, pastoral work in schools or  speech and language therapy, among others.

You may also choose to go on to do postgraduate qualifications in teaching as a PGCE or School Direct, or Masters (Level 7) study in a range of disciplines including early years, education, social work, health and research. There are also opportunities to study a variety of subjects at doctoral level.


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

You may have the opportunity to undertake a field trip abroad.  Field trips are non-credit bearing and entirely voluntary. You will be advised of availability and costs by your programme director.

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.

You will be encouraged to take a critical view of theories, research and approaches covered in the programme.

You will have a variety of learning and teaching experiences including: attending lectures, seminars, workshops, practical physical activities, personalised tutorials, or independent and group work.

You will have access to readings, lecture materials and other support via the University’s virtual learning environment. Lectures will be used to underpin key concepts and initiate areas of study.

Seminars, workshops and discussion will focus on developing critical thinking, enabling you to comment upon particular aspects of current research and to devise, justify and sustain your arguments. You will be expected to work collaboratively in pairs, groups and action learning sets for the purposes of support and critical reflection.

You will be encouraged to take responsibility for your own learning, and to develop a range of graduate attributes including (but not limited to) conceptual understanding of how to devise and sustain arguments and/or to solve problems using ideas and techniques; to be able to manage your own learning and make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources; be prepared for future success through work-related experiences in small negotiated projects and in your independent study.

You will have access to a range of learning technology tools to support your learning and interaction with tutors and other students. This access will include e-portfolios through the virtual learning environment. As part of the University library you can use the e-library, which will provide to access e-journals and e-books and other useful resources to support your studies.

Each module will have a module leader who will be your main contact, will support students and liaise with the programme director. As a Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU) student you will have access to the full range of services, both academic and personal, that are offered by the University.

You will be allocated a personal academic tutor who will support you both personally and academically throughout your study. The programme handbook will include tiered guidelines for students in order for them to gain appropriate levels of support guidance. The programme handbook will be available on the University virtual learning environment.

You will be introduced to the programme handbook during the induction meeting into higher education and referred to in Module 1. The programme handbook and accompanying guidance will be a helpful source of reference for you.

We encourage you to broaden your experience beyond the confines of the university classroom. There are lots of opportunities for gaining qualifications related to education such as a TEFL course that introduces you to teaching English as a foreign language or a course in Outdoor Learning through a partnership agreement with Kent Wildlife Trust that broadens your opportunities for experiences with young people.

There are also a range of international visits organised by the Faculty of Education to educational settings around the world. These overseas opportunities would all be self-funded and take place in your own vacation time. 

A wide variety of assessment strategies have been selected to suit the subject matter and in particular the programme and module learning outcomes. Your knowledge and understanding will be assessed through a range of assessment methods which might include: coursework submissions (such as essays, scientific reports, individual studies, case studies and portfolios), presentations, practical work and examinations.

Assessment procedures will also provide you with opportunity to demonstrate your cognitive and subject-specific skills, as well as apply your knowledge to the world of work. Preparation of assignments will also draw on your emerging graduate attributes.


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

  • X36F Special Educational Needs and Physical Activity with Foundation Year
  • X362 Special Educational Needs and Physical Activity

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 4 years full-time including a Foundation Year


  • September 2020

Entry requirements

  • A typical offer would be one AS Level pass or a pass in a Level 3 vocational study programme e.g. BTEC



Last edited 25/02/2019 15:15:00

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Last edited: 25/02/2019 15:15:00