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Early Childhood Studies

Subject Benchmark Statement

Subject Benchmark Statements describe the nature of study and the academic standards expected of graduates in specific subject areas. They show what graduates might reasonably be expected to know, do and understand at the end of their studies.


Below you will find the full Subject Benchmark Statement for Early Childhood Studies. Alongside it, we have also published a summary designed to provide a short and accessible overview of the main Statement for students, employers and academics. 


Subject Benchmark Statement: Early Childhood Studies

Publication date: 30 Mar 2022

Subject Benchmark Statement: Early Childhood Studies - The Basics

Publication date: 30 Mar 2022

About this subject


Early Childhood Studies focuses on the holistic development of infants and young children from conception to the age of eight. It draws upon research and professional practice from many areas - from health and education, to economics and neuroscience.


Early Childhood Studies graduates progress to a wide range of professional roles, contribute to policy and research, and advocate for babies and young children, their families and the early childhood professions. They facilitate the right of children to actively participate in their world, recognising each child and all children's uniqueness. Their knowledge enables them to advocate for young children’s needs, voice, rights, development and learning, while celebrating diversity and promoting inclusion.

Ms Philippa Thompson - Chair of the Advisory Group
Principal Lecturer, Sheffield Hallam University

This new guidance is intended to support the development of postgraduate and undergraduate honours degrees within a context of a rapidly changing policy and employment landscape in education, health and social care. The revised Statement has been developed by experts in the discipline from across the four nations with much discussion and debate. We feel very proud of the resulting documentation that truly challenges degrees across the country to become high quality, creative and innovative courses that support our graduates to become highly skilled and knowledgeable advocates for young children and their families, with a strong emphasis on social justice.

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