BA (Hons) Youth and Community Work

Delivered by experienced and award-winning youth workers, this youth and community work degree will prepare you for a career working with children and young people in a range of settings, helping them to enhance their personal, social and educational development.

Throughout the youth and community work qualification you will expand your knowledge and skills to include critical, analytical and reflective thinking within a youth and community work setting. Our strong partnerships with local employers provide work placement opportunities to enhance your learning and employability.

On successful completion of our youth work course, you’ll not only graduate with a degree, but with a professionally recognised qualification that is recognised UK-wide by the Joint Negotiating Committee (JNC) and endorsed by Education and Training Standards Wales (ETS). Covering everything from Safeguarding to Informal Education methods and Facilitation skills, your study here will prepare you for this rewarding profession and career.

As well as attaining professionally qualified youth worker status, you will also be eligible to register with the Education Workforce Council (EWC).

2022/23 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for delivering our courses in the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to change during the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. Whether you’re on-campus full time, part-time with online study, or full-time online, USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
L521 Full-time 3 Years September Newport City C
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
L521 Full-time 3 Years September Newport City C

Year One: Youth and Community Work Degree

  • Adolescence and Well-Being
  • Academic Digital Skills for Research and Study
  • Professional Values and Ethics in Youth Work
  • Young People and Society
  • Role of Youth and Community Worker 1
  • Role of Youth and Community Worker 2

Year Two: Youth and Community Work Degree

  • Youth Work Management Skills and Integrated Practice in the Community
  • Developing Effective Youth and Community Work (2)
  • Developing Effective Youth and Community Work (1)
  • Global Youth Work and Community Development
  • Research Methods
  • Individual and Group Facilitation Skills

Year Three: Youth and Community Work Degree

Your final year explores how to become a critical and reflective professional. You can also specialise in the area of work with young people that interests you most through a research project and dissertation

 Interprofessional Practice

  • Becoming a Critical and Reflective Practitioner 1 (Leadership)
  • Becoming a Critical and Reflective Practitioner 2 (Supervision)
  • Dissertation

Students can also qualify as a youth and community worker through our innovative specialised pathway Youth and Community Work – Youth Justice.

Foundation Year

The BA (Hons) Youth and Community Work is also available as a four year course including an integrated Foundation Year, and is designed for students who do not currently meet admissions criteria for direct entry onto the degree. You will start by completing a foundation year, which provides well structured support, allowing you to develop your skills and knowledge before continuing onto the three year degree programme. Please note the integrated first year will be studied at Treforest Campus with the following three years of the degree at Newport City Campus. For more information please email [email protected] 


Subject to revalidation from 2021
This course is subject to revalidation, this means it is under review as part of the University’s standard quality assurance and enhancement processes. Course and module content is indicative and may change through the revalidation process. As soon as the course is revalidated, the details will be confirmed and published on the University website.
In the unlikely event the course does not go ahead as planned, or is significantly amended, we will write to inform you. If this happens, we’ll help you to find a suitable alternative course either at USW or at another provider.


All Academic Lecturers on the Youth and Community Work Team at USW come from a practice background, and all are JNC Qualified youth workers, with some still in practice. This means our teaching and training are up-to-date and linked to current practice and policy. Academic staff enjoy working with University of South Wales students to grow research that proves the impact practitioners with young people can make and demonstrate that Youth Work works!

Academic staff across the team have recently published research and journal articles related to youth and community work.


You will be assessed through a diverse range of methods to suit all learning styles and preferences, including written assignments, spoken assignments, Digital resource production, Group presentations, portfolio building, placement assessor reports, individual presentations, critiquing journal articles and peer assessment.


The BA (Hons) Youth and Community Work degree is recognised UK-wide by the Joint Negotiating Committee (JNC) and endorsed by Education and Training Standards Wales (ETS).


A third of this youth and community work degree is practice-based, so you’ll have hands-on experience of working with young people. You will also be assigned a professional supervisor who can offer you one-to-one guidance. So you’ll see how what you learn in the classroom works in the real world and have relevant experiences to talk about at interview.

The University has established excellent partnerships with local employers, so you will have access to professionally qualified practitioners. 

The work placements will specifically focus on developing your skills and abilities as a youth and community worker in training. The block placements will immerse you within the professional field and you will be expected to put your skills, knowledge and abilities into practice.

These placements will boost your confidence and overall knowledge of youth and community work. You will be equipped to:

  • Use your skills, knowledge and abilities to build positive and effective relationships with young people
  • Work in partnership with colleagues and partners and members of the community
  • Develop innovative and creative learning opportunities
  • Open the doors to opportunities for young people and engage them in a variety of different learning opportunities
  • Link theory to practice
  • Enhance, improve and raise your awareness of your employability skills and abilities as a professional qualified worker

There are also excellent opportunities to study and practice overseas. These intercultural experiences will improve your skill base and awareness of working with young people in a global context, as well as locally and nationally.


Mick Conroy, Course Leader

Kate Haywood, Senior Lecturer, Course Leader MA Working for Children & Young People
Lise Jacobsen, Lecturer, Partnership Link Officer Cardiff & Vale College
Kelly McCarthy, Lecturer


We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

The entry criteria below shows the qualification range within which the University will make offers. Most offers we make are at the top of the range, but we take all aspects of an application into consideration and applicants receive a personalised offer. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable.

You may also apply if you feel you have a relevant career history and experience of working with young people. This will usually include the following:

Direct experience of youth or community work (six months minimum)
Agored Cymru Level 3 Certificate in Youth Work / NOCN Level 3 Certificate in Working with Young People.

Interview Youth and Community Work

Tutors will explain the course content and you will be given the opportunity to ask any questions in addition to us assessing your suitability for the Youth and Community Work course.

Typical A-Level Offer

BCC - CDD to exclude General Studies (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical Welsh BACC Offer

Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level to exclude General Studies (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum score of 29 overall including 5 or above in English at standard level

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass the Access to HE Diploma and obtain a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances. 

Additional requirements

  • Evidence of 100 hours work experience of direct work in a youth and community setting
  • An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on the Child & Adult Workforce and Child and Adult Barring Lists and subscription to the DBS Update Service. (Overseas equivalent required for non-uk applicants)



Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course


August 2021 - July 2022 Fees

  • Full-time UK:  £9000

  • Full-time International:  £13800 

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

August 2023 - July 2024 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Field Trips: Study Tour Zimbabwe £2000
One payment
Field Trips : European Exchange Activity £200
One payment
DBS * £55.42
This fee includes £40 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee.
DBS Updating Service * £13
Subscription required for each year of the course for a yearly fee of £13. Please note the service has to be joined within 30 days of receipt of your enhanced DBS certificate.
Other: Travel Costs for Professional Training Placements £0 - £500
Students need to cover their transport costs for their professional training placements. Year 1, 2 and 3

UK Students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International and EU students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK.

Admissions statement

On successful completion of the youth and community work course, you will have gained a qualification that is professionally recognised UK-wide by the Joint Negotiating Committee (JNC) and endorsed by Education and Training Standards Wales (ETS). You will be able to work in partnership with young people, and communities within the context of current policy. As a youth and community worker, you will work in a variety of settings utilising individual and group work, mentoring and communication skills with individuals and groups.

On completion, there may be opportunities for you to progress into further study via a Masters course including the MA Working for Children and Young People at the University of South Wales.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.