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PGCE Early Years Initial Teacher Training


Initial Teacher Education

PGCE with Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS)
Campus or location
Sion Hill
Course length
One year (employment based - part time).

Entry requirements

You’ll need to be well suited to the teaching profession both personally and academically.

See 'What we look for in potential students' in the main column for more information.

This course isn't currently open to applications

For more information, please contact our Admissions service on +44 (0)1225 876 180 or

A specialist course for those already working or seeking to work with children from birth to five years old.

  • Gain Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in Early Years.
  • Train while you work. Qualify to teach the 0-5 age range while employed in an early years setting.
  • Become a specialist in early childhood and prepare yourself for diverse and exciting career opportunities.

Gain an understanding of how children develop and learn through our Early Years Initial Teacher Training (EYITT) programme. By completing the programme, you’ll gain Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS). This specialist award is designed for those who wish to specialise in work with babies and young children from birth to five years old.

For potential applicants:

  • Make a difference for young children – a career in early years teaching is very rewarding
  • By becoming an early years teacher, you’ll make a lasting, positive impact on children’s wellbeing and development

For employers:

  • In 2024-25, funding of up to £14,000 is available; up to £7,000 to cover course fees plus £7,000 to help cover extra costs of training and supporting a graduate in your setting.
  • Early years teachers add value and make a difference to the nursery team; they share leadership, skills and expertise.

See the funding guidance for further information.

“Early Years Teachers make the education and care of babies and children their first concern. They are accountable for achieving the highest possible standards in their professional practice and conduct.”

Teachers’ Standards (Early Years) – NCTL 2013

What you'll learn


Through the 12 month part-time programme you’ll develop your professional skills and knowledge to lead the learning of all young children.

You’ll spend significant amounts of time practising in your work setting. You’ll need to exhibit the capability to teach across the age range. Consequently, additional placements will be tailored to meet your individual needs. You’ll spend between 6 and 11 weeks (usually 6-8 weeks) away from your base setting on placements, depending on your previous experience.

This programme is suitable for you if you fit either of the following criteria:

  • You’re already employed in an early years setting/early years department of a school
  • You’re newly recruited to an early years setting to undertake Early Years ITT through an employment-based route.
How will I be assessed?

In order to be recommended for Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS), you’ll need to undertake assignments which assess your knowledge and understanding relating to teaching and learning. You’ll need to demonstrate your understanding and skills in planning, teaching, assessing and evaluating children's learning. All assessments will demonstrate that you have met the early years teachers’ standards.

How will I be taught?

You'll attend university one day per week during school term time, where you’ll be taught in seminars and workshops. We’ll encourage you to think critically about research, national initiatives and classroom practice. You’ll explore and critique the relationship between theory and practice.

You'll train in at least two schools or settings, where you’ll work with teachers, learners, additional adults, a mentor and an academic tutor to support your professional development. You’ll become familiar with the work of a school/setting and the nature of, and the relationship between, teaching and learning.

We’ll support you along the way to ensure you become a creative and caring early years teacher.

To find out more about how we teach and how you'll learn, please read our Learning and Teaching Delivery Statement.


Why should I choose a training route leading to Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS)?

Many individuals make their decision based on the age group they want to teach. Initial teacher training leading to Early Years Teacher Status is designed for those who wish to specialise in early childhood development and lead education and care for children from birth to five years.

Working as an early years teacher with young children is a rewarding and challenging career, and teachers can make a real difference to children’s development and life chances. There are opportunities to work in a range of early years settings to further develop skills and expertise and also opportunities to move into management of a setting.

For those who wish to work with primary school age children the most common route to becoming a school teacher is to undertake initial teacher training leading to QTS.

Will I get QTS if I achieve Early Years Teacher Status?

No. Successful completion of an Early Years Initial Teacher Training course leads to the award of Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS). This award is different to the award of QTS and is designed for those who wish to specialise in work with babies and young children from birth to five years. The role early years teachers play will depend on the type of provision they work in, but whatever the setting, they will bring knowledge, skills and experience and contribute to improving outcomes for young children.

If I have Early Years Teacher Status can I teach in a maintained school?

Those with EYTS can work in maintained settings but only individuals who meet the legal definition of a school teacher can lead teaching in a maintained nursery school or a nursery class in a maintained school for children aged three and over.

Those with early years teacher status are, therefore, not able to lead classes in a maintained nursery or school, unless they also hold QTS (or a suitable international teaching qualification as defined by NARIC). Early years teachers can, of course, lead teaching in all other early years settings.

Where can those with Early Years Teacher Status lead teaching?

Early years teachers can work in all private, voluntary and independent (PVI) early years settings which are 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.

What is the pay scale for early years teachers?

There is no nationally agreed pay scale for early years teachers. The pay and conditions of individuals with early years teacher status are determined by employers. All early years settings are free to set the level of pay for individuals they employ with early years teacher status including maintained schools.

Course modules

This course offers or includes the following modules. The modules you take will depend on your pathway or course combination (if applicable) as well as any optional or open modules chosen. Please check the programme document (below the main image on this page) for more information.

  • Supporting children’s learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage
  • Building relationship in the Early Years
  • The Role of Reflection in Transforming Your Thinking and Practice
  • Research Informed Practice in English (Early Years)
  • Research Informed Practice in Mathematics (Early Years)
  • Making learning visible with young children
  • EYTS Module (Birth to 5 age phase)



EYITT is the only teacher training programme focused specifically on the age range of birth to five years old.

The Government is committed to raising the quality of Early Years provision by encouraging graduate leadership. You’ll graduate with EYTS – ideally placed to fulfil the needs of employers for high quality education and care for babies and young children.

Opportunities for professional development are extensive during study and post-graduation; you might coordinate a multi-professional team in a children's centre or wish to work more directly in children’s services, specialise in Special Educational Needs or continue academic study at Master’s level. There are also numerous opportunities for students wishing to take their practice abroad.

Bath Spa Early Years Teachers go on to gain employment in various fields aside from teaching, including lecturing, advisory positions, teacher training, administration, schools inspections and educational outreach. Bath Spa Early Years Teachers go on to have diverse, challenging and fulfilling careers within the wide ranging educational landscape.

Academic assessed school/setting training

You’ll have an academic tutor with who you’ll meet regularly to review your progress against the Teachers' Standards (Early Years).

Adobe Creative Campus

Develop a wealth of indispensable digital skills that you can take into your future career. One of only three Adobe Creative Campuses in the UK, we provide all Bath Spa students with access to the full Adobe Creative Suite, giving you the tools to communicate creatively, whatever your course or chosen professional field.   

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

As a Bath Spa Teacher on the employment-based route, you'll learn primarily in your employment setting, in addition to the University and short-term placements in schools/settings.

Your main campus will be Sion Hill. Teaching will take place in rooms equipped with relevant texts, equipment, training materials, and electronic resources.


2024 entry
Student Annual tuition fee
UK part time If eligible you can access funding to cover the cost of the course.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

You’ll need to be well suited to the teaching profession both personally and academically. We look for people with a committed professional approach and an exceptional work ethic. You’ll need to be organised, flexible and unflappable, as well as being able to communicate, interact and relate well to everyone. When entering the teaching profession, having strong emotional resilience and a sense of humour will give you the edge.

In order to apply for Early Years Initial Teacher Training you’ll need:

  • To be employed in an Early Years setting or be actively seeking employment in an Early Years setting (at least 16 hours / 3 days per week)
  • GCSE passes at grade 4/C or above (or recognised equivalents) in English, Mathematics and a Science subject
  • A good UK honours degree (or equivalent qualification) in any subject
  • To take part in a rigorous selection process designed to assess your suitability to teach.
How do I apply?

This course isn't currently open to applications. For more information, please contact our Admissions service on +44 (0)1225 876 180 or

Course leader: Fiona Hunt

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