BSc (Hons) Childhood Development

What influences development and why do children behave the way they do? On this Childhood Development course, you’ll explore key issues in children’s development, learning and behaviour, from a range of perspectives. You’ll learn to understand and analyse factors that influence development, and explain a range of challenging behaviours, including those associated with ADHD, conduct disorder, autism, and learning disabilities.

A key element of our Childhood Development degree is the opportunity to gain a short period of hands-on experience working with children and adolescents in a range of settings, including schools, child and family welfare charities, and youth justice. You’ll be offered clinical experience on campus and will have the opportunity to undertake short courses and work placements, as well as completing additional qualifications such as Safeguarding Children (Level 1). You can also meet the training requirements to be a Registered Behaviour Technician, though registration requires passing a BSc (Hons) Childhood Development test administered by the Behaviour Analyst Certification Board.


UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
L239 Full-time 3 Years September Treforest A
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
L239 Full-time 3 Years September Treforest A

You’ll learn about cognitive, biological, social, and emotional development throughout childhood and adolescence. You’ll recognise the complex influences that shape the lives of children and adolescents, including how play affects children’s development and motivation. Your understanding of historical, contemporary and international perspectives of education and learning will allow you to explore how culture and society influence the changing concept of childhood and education. You will investigate key issues around curriculum, pedagogy and practice.

You’ll also develop an understanding of children’s behaviour from an analytical perspective, taking on board the various environmental factors that contribute to behaviour. You’ll also be taught how to design effective intervention strategies to help children and young people become successful at home, at school, and in their communities.

Year One: Childhood Development Degree

  • Perspectives of Childhood and Education (40 credits)
  • Understanding Challenging Behaviour (40 credits)
  • Child Development and Play (40 credits)

Year Two: Childhood Development Degree

  • Play and Learning (20 credits)
  • Safeguarding Children and Young People (20 credits)
  • Inside the Mind of the Child (40 credits)
  • Equality and Diversity in Practice - optional (40 credits) 
  • Assessment and Intervention for Challenging Behaviour - optional (40 credits) 

Year Three: Childhood Development Degree

  • Dissertation (40 credits)
  • Health, wellbeing and development (20 credits)
  • Leading and managing others - optional (40 credits) 
  • Literacy and numeracy in focus - optional (20 credits) 
  • Learning and teaching in primary schools - optional (20 credits) 
  • Behaviour change in homes, schools and communities - optional (20 credits) 
  • Practical skills in behaviour analysis - optional (20 credit) 
  • Embracing Neurodiversity (20 credits)

You will need to complete 120 credits of study per year.

Please note: these modules are currently subject to revalidation.

Foundation Year

The BSc (Hons) Childhood Development is also available as a four year course including an integrated Foundation Year in Social Sciences, 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.



The BSc (Hons) Childhood Development degree is delivered through lectures, seminars, workshops, individual / small group supervision and independent study. You will also have the opportunity to attend guest lectures given by academic staff from other institutions and professionals who work in different areas of practice.

You will complete a range of different class activities including group discussions, debates, case studies and in-class projects. You will experience a great range of delivery and assessment methods.

Our academic staff are involved in research, so you’ll be taught by staff at the forefront of their specialist fields. 


You will complete a range of assessments including essays, practical reports, oral presentations, story bags and case studies. These will also be some examination assessments (seen and unseen) and in-class tests.


Practical work placements are a compulsory part of our Childhood Development course, plus there are internship opportunities available in all years of study.

Psychology Plus aims to enhance your skills and give you an advantage in the graduate jobs market or applications for further study. You’ll have the opportunity to gain clinical experience at our behaviour clinic on campus, and complete specialist short courses, professional certificates and work placements – altogether a great boost to your CV. 

Featured Lecturer:
Dr Catherine Purcell

Dr Catherine Purcell

Dr Catherine Purcell specialises in research that explores the link between perception and action in natural contexts, such as at the roadside. The largest project that she is currently leading is funded by the Waterloo Foundation and aims to measure the developmental readiness of 6-13 year old children, with and without developmental disorders, to acquire new knowledge and skills through different methods of teaching road safety.

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.

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 in a relevant subject (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with higher grades of between 655-445 (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points)

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 60 credits overall – the credits should equate to between 106-80 UCAS tariff points (examples below)

45 Level 3 credits equating to 15 Distinctions, 24 Merits and 6 Passes (106 UCAS Tariff Points)

45 Level 3 credits equating to 12 Distinctions, 6 Merits and 27 Passes (80 UCAS Tariff Points)

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances Other: You will also need an enhanced DBS check.

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements

In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

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 2018 - July 2019 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU:  £9000 
  • Full-time International:  £12300 

August 2019 - July 2020 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU: 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
DBS * £57.2
This fee includes £44 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee. Once you firmly accept our offer, we will send you details on how to apply for the DBS.
DBS Updating Service £13
Whilst optional it is strongly recommended signing up for this service especially if you are likely to have placements each year and wish to pursue a career post University where a DBS check is a requirement. Please note the service has to be joined within 19 days of receipt of your enhanced DBS certificate.
Other: Placement Costs £0 - £500
All years of study. Cost is dependent on location
Other: Making Resources £50
Years 2 &3


The Helen Kegie Bursary is aimed at students aiming to study within the subject areas of Social Work, Youth Work or Early Years, who have a permanent postal address with a CF or NP postcode and come from a low-income background. See more information about the Helen Kegie Bursary.

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU 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 students

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

Admissions statement

In addition to gaining theoretical knowledge around key stages of the developing child and adolescent, the BSc (Hons) Childhood Development degree will also develop a range of practical skills and engage in placement based activities, which will give you both the knowledge and tools to work with children and young people in a variety of settings.

Your Childhood Development degree will open the door to a range of exciting career opportunities across many settings, including youth work, nurseries and early years settings, schools and charities / third sector organisations. There are a range of professional qualifications that this course will help prepare you for, such as Occupational Therapy, Social Work, Youth and Community Work and teaching qualifications.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW Childhood Development 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.