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PGCE Early Years Initial Teacher Training (employment pathway)

    UCL Institute of Education Logo
  • Study Type

    Part time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date


  • Course Duration

    Part time: 1 year

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    13 January 2020

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The employment-based route on the Early Years Initial Teacher Training (EYITT) programme is designed for those already working with babies and children from birth to five years old. Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) will be recommended for graduates who have met all of the Early Years Teachers' Standards).

About this programme

Early Years Teachers will be specialists in early childhood development and the EYFS Framework. As highly skilled graduate leaders, you will be responsible for facilitating and leading high-quality professional practice in early years settings. Participants will leave the programme as reflective practitioners who work with integrity, fostering positive relationships with parents/carers and children as well as other professionals.

Students undertake modules to the value of 60 credits.

Participants will be working to a timetable of no more than 90 per cent of full time working hours and be released for training and study days. Students take three core modules (60 credits total). In addition to this, students will undertake placements in at least one other setting, in order to cover the full 0-5 age range.

An additional pathway is also available for those who wish to study full-time.

Upon successful completion of 60 credits, you will be awarded a PGCE in Early Years Initial Teacher Training (employment pathway).

Why study this programme at UCL?

Students on the Early Years Initial Teacher Training (EYITT) programme benefit enormously from the complementary skills and expertise of staff in partnership schools/settings and at the IOE.

The EYITT route complements other existing initial teacher education programmes at the IOE by both harnessing the expertise of internationally renowned lecturers and well respected researchers in early years education.

At the IOE we have a long tradition of working in partnership with early years settings and schools in inner cities,including London. The placement settings offer teaching experience where practitioners serve as mentors and joint assessors for our student Early Years teachers. IOE tutors have extensive experience of teaching, school management, inspection, research and consultancy.


Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) will be recommended for graduates who have been judged to have met all of the Early Years Teachers' Standards.


Students will undertake placements in order to cover the full 0-5 age range, including 10 days in a Key Stage 1/2 placement.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered via a combination of taught sessions, workshops and work-based learning. The content of the programme aims to keep a careful balance between early years initiatives, educational theory and its practical application. Work-based learning means that academic knowledge, skills and understanding are clearly integrated and contextualised within the professional role of an early years teacher.


Early years teachers can work in all private, voluntary and independent (PVI) early years settings which is where the majority of children and early years provision is based. They can also work in free schools, academies and independent schools which can employ teaching staff without the requirement for them to have QTS.


Recent research such as the EPPE Project (Sylva et al, 2010) has provided sound evidence that high quality early education teaching and care can have a powerful impact on young children, not only preparing them for school, but contributing to positive outcomes later in life (Prout, 1999). Acknowledging the key importance that quality education has on the outcomes for young children from their earliest years, government reforms in initial teacher education are focused on the years birth to five. Consequently, successful graduates of the specialist EYITT programme find that they are highly sought after throughout the EYFS sector.

Visit the PGCE Early Years Initial Teacher Training (employment pathway) page on the University College London website for more details!