Education Foundation degree (FdA) (Awarded by Staffordshire University)
What is this course about?
The Foundation degree in Education offers comprehensive coverage of the knowledge and skills required by those supporting teaching and learning. It is a practical course focused on the workplace. The course develops understanding of teaching and learning, working in education and behaviour management. It also covers skills required for effective communication, self development and career progression. You will take a range of modules which will be formally assessed through a range of tasks and activities.
You will also be assessed on your understanding of: learner motivation and rewards; emotional intelligence and the effective learning environment.
Applicants for the Foundation degree in Education must:
•Be employed for at least 4 hours per week, or equivalent to 2 days
per week in an appropriate role and setting;
• Normally have 3 GCSEs (or equivalent) at grade C or above; including English
•Hold a relevant Level 3 Qualification
How is it taught
Transferable skills are developed through practical workshops for the analysis and discussion of issues, documents and materials; work-based activities to establish connections between the workplace and issues raised by the programme; work with others, as a result of the development of interpersonal skills, to demonstrate the capacity to plan, to share goals, and work as a member of a team; communicate and present oral and written arguments; critical feedback from peers and tutors on work-based activities; guided reading, supported self-study and independent study to enable participants to engage with critical debate; use Information and Communication Technology, including word processing, databases, internet communication, information retrieval and on-line searches. Learning and teaching strategies at levels 4 and 5 are differentiated by a much greater emphasis at level 5 on the importance of theoretical underpinning to inform practice, compared to a greater emphasis on utilising participants’ experience to raise issues and develop understanding at level 4.
Through reflective discussion a high proportion of the learning and teaching undertaken within the course will reflect work based learning. Lecturers will also encourage you, through discussion, presentations and written accounts to reflect and apply academic knowledge and understanding undertaken.
A key learning and teaching resource used by students and tutors on the FdA Education (Teaching Assistants) is the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). You can direct own study time electronically. Furthermore there is a discussion area on the VLE. This will be used for you to post some work-based tasks and communicate with other classmates from your own college and other delivery sites. Tutors will provide help and further information regarding the VLE.
How will I be assessed?
The assessment strategies employed within the course offer you the chance to show performance against the learning objectives set in each module. An emphasis of workplace knowledge and understanding, alongside theoretical application provides you with the opportunity for reflection and evaluation of practice, both personal and of your organisation.
Assessment types, volume and length allow you to demonstrate skills and knowledge outlined within module assessment criteria. Timings of the modules provide all teaching to take place within school and college term times; including breaks for half-terms. Hand-in dates are also placed after school and college vacation times, again providing the student body required time, when not in the workplace, to complete assignments. The course will normally be studied over two years. The requirements of the award are that you must achieve an overall pass in each of the modules taken and produce a Personal Development Record. You are required to undertake work based tasks which include observations and enquiries. Your understanding and experience gained in these tasks are utilised within summative assessment. End of module assignments require you to complete a work based activity coupled with academic writing to support. This allows you to demonstrate application of the skills you have acquired within the workplace and knowledge and understanding from the taught elements of the course. Evaluative and reflective skills are assessed within the writing elements, which are explicitly included within the assignment guidelines.
The course delivery and assessment deadlines are strategically placed around school and college vacation time, providing you with further opportunity to successfully complete. You will be required to observe ethical considerations when researching and feeding back the outcomes orally and in writing. You will be assessed in every module for which you enrol. You may be required to undertake more than one element of assessment for a module, and will be given information on what is expected of you at the start of the module.
Knowledge, Understanding and Learning are assessed through tasks requiring the use of theoretical frameworks to develop specified aspects of professional practice, reviews of this and recommendations for policy and improved practice. Analysis and Reflection are assessed through professional practice and the analysis of complex situations and within reflection on your own value systems. Analysis and Reflection is also assessed through the accommodation of new ideas discussed within class and through written assignments. Transferable and generic skills are assessed through a variety of methods, including written assignments, professional practice, discussions and consideration of case-studies.
Work based assessment consists of a major part of the overall course assessment. There will be Assessment of Professional Practice in the workplace, portfolios of evidence and you will need to show understanding of personal development, workplace development and organisational awareness. The following will also be assessed:
Design and evaluation tasks, such as the development and evaluation of session plans and support materials, Research tasks, such as organisation-based studies emanating from the work on educational and professional issues,
Critical Evaluation of support materials and organisation-wide issues on the basis of evidence collected during your professional experience. You will complete a number of sharply focused written assignments designed to assess your academic and professional attainment and also to mirror the kinds of written tasks undertaken by education professionals in schools and colleges.
What else do I need to know?
Stoke on Trent College has some of the most comprehensive and up-to-date facilities in the country. Learning takes place in a friendly and relaxed environment and your teaching team are here to help you get the most from your course. If you want to study on your own you can use one of the Learning Resource Centres and independent study is integral to the course. All our classrooms are large, spacious and well equipped, and our staff have an excellent knowledge of the industry gained through many years of experience. The course fee is per academic year. Financial support, including HE Loans may be available towards this cost and other expenses depending upon your personal circumstances. For more information please see http://www.stokecollege.ac.uk/hefinance. Application must be online through the Staffordshire University online system – see https://evision.staffs.ac.uk/urd/sits.urd/run/siw_ipp_lgn.login?process=siw_ipp_app&code1=DUSTC-09742ASE&code2=0002 Please note: this course is awarded by Staffordshire University and does not include a teacher training qualification.
What could I do next?
This Foundation degree in Education is designed to provide an opportunity for you if you are working with learners to build on your knowledge and experience and to enhance understanding of your current role. In addition it will provide a route towards obtaining a degree and professional qualifications at a higher level, e.g. BA (Hons) Education.