About the course

This course is a two-year top up to initial HE qualifications in Education and Training or in the life-long learning sector. If you have completed the Diploma in Education and Training or equivalent the course will enable you to top up your existing qualifications to a full degree. It is taught part-time over two years, so you can remain in employment while critically exploring the area you work in.

During the course, you will develop your academic skills and your ability to evaluate and investigate the ideas and practices of post-compulsory education/lifelong learning. You will receive structured guidance and tutorial support through your own personal tutor. You will explore areas such as learning from experience, learning and sustainable development and reflective practice.

How to apply

  • Register and apply via www.canterbury.ac.uk/online
  • For further information please emailThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Entry requirements

  • Diploma in Education and Training, Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector or an equivalent. Other relevant qualifications from HE institutions can be considered

If you do not have the above UCAS/GCSE requirements but you are a mature student, have appropriate experience, specific knowledge or industry-based qualifications, your application will be welcomed and still considered on case to case basis.

Additional entry requirements

  • You should have relevant professional work within the Post-Compulsory Education and Training/Lifelong Learning sector. In most cases entrants to the programme will be either teachers or lecturers or be in some similar type of role within this sector. In some cases teaching or training will only be a part of the entrant’s professional work. It is possible that entrants to the programme will be employed in PCET/LL without being directly involved in teaching and training. Such entrants must be in a position to complete all the modules including those which require ‘research’. 

  • All applicants will be expected to provide evidence of a current Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate. In almost all cases you will be able to use your work-related DBS check as part of meeting the entry requirements.

What you will study

You will study the history, underpinning philosophies, and the cultural importance of PCET/LL.  At all points the theory of PCET/LL will be related to practice.  In the latter part of the programme in particular, you will be expected to explore and research areas and questions which are of particular importance to your own professional context and interest.  You will learn how to carry out and report on a small scale research project.  The programme is grounded in academic study of contemporary realities and explores the past, alternative models, and potential futures of PCET/LL.

The programme will also develop a range of ‘graduate level’ skills.  This includes academic skills in the areas of criticality, evaluation and investigation.  You will be expected to communicate your thoughts and findings to your peers and to the lecturers in spoken and written form.  You will learn how to participate effectively in the Higher Education ‘community of practice’


    Year 1

    Lifelong Learning: a critical opening - This module will introduce you to the key themes that run throughout the course through studying readings in adult learning. You will become confident in participating in academic discussion and writing.

    Really Useful Knowledge’ 1850-The Present and the History of Learning Theories - You will study how education policy and practice have evolved in historical, socio-economic and political contexts. By examining these, you will investigate the changing organisation of work and the emphasis on vocational training. Together we will explore the concept of the adult learner and how it impacts our professional and personal lives. You will be encouraged to explore knowledge, who is knowledge for and who has the power to make decisions.

    Learning from Experience - The focus of this module is the individual and how they make sense of educational experiences within the broader context. You will consider what learning and lifelong learning means to you. The module aims to make the link between theory and practice at an individual level.

    Lifelong Learning: Widening Views - This module will focus on your academic reading skills. You will read, evaluate and discuss a number of challenging texts. Themes include post-modernism, globalisation, Neoliberalism, and equality and diversity. You will gain confidence in dealing with issues of ideology and interpretation.

    Lifelong Learning and Sustainability Development - Sustainability and sustainable development are often at the forefront of current public debate. You will examine the complexity of the various perspectives and debates. In this module, you will also look at the diversity of sustainable development in both national and international contexts as well as the concepts of informal and community learning.

    Reflective Practice and Lifelong Learning - By increasing your understanding of the curricular contexts of your own work, this module will help you become a more effective practitioner of Lifelong Learning. You will examine the value of your role and how it relates to the views of your organisation and professional conventions. In particular, you will assess the needs of your learners and co-workers within your area of work.

    Year 2

    Orientation and Research Skills - This module will introduce you to the next stage of your studies. You will develop your professional understanding and practice through the review of history, cultural and policy contexts of PCET/Lifelong Learning. Using a biographical approach, you will learn to understand the personal context for learning and thinking about the idea of a 'reflective practioner'.

    Approaches to Research and Professional Development - You will be provided with concepts and approaches for research and development. These are action research, curriculum evaluation and development, and literature review. You will use these to help you engage in research for your role and professional development.

    Individual Study - You will have the opportunity to research a subject of your choice to enhance your professional development.

    Modules will be continually reviewed and where appropriate, revised to reflect changes in the subject and ensure the best student experience. Applicants will be informed of any changes to the course structure before enrolment.

    You will encounter a range of assessment methods which may include, but are not limited to: essays, practical reports, case studies, portfolios, oral presentations and independent study.



    You will complete and submit for assessment a set task at the end of each module. These tasks are fundamentally written tasks often in an essay form. The assessments are marked in accordance with the relevant university guidelines and regulations. You will find the relevant marking grids in your course handbook and your tutors will explain these grids to you at various times throughout the programme. The marking grids should serve you as a valuable resource and guide. Students final BA (Hons.) classification is calculated from the marks awarded for the three assignments at Level 6. To complete the BA students must successfully complete all the modules and assessments.   

    You will encounter a range of assessment methods which may include, but are not limited to: essays, practical reports, case studies, portfolios, oral presentations and independent study. You will be assessed against assessment criteria which will be made clear to you at the start of your module of study. The assessment across the programme aims to give you opportunities to demonstrate a variety of knowledge and understanding skills and qualities expected of a graduate of this degree.   The assessment for each module will normally be in one or two parts.



    You can apply for a student loan for this course.

    Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet these include:

    - Text books 

    - Travel to other sites - Where required

    - Library Fees and Fines - If you fail to return loaned items within the required time you will be responsible for the cost of any fees or fines applicable 

    - Printing and photocopying - You will need to cover the cost of any printing or photocopying undertaken to support your learning 

    - Graduation ceremonies - It is free for you to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by you.


    The course is delivered at London South East Colleges and you will study 1 evening per week.  You will be taught by a mixture of staff from Bromley and Canterbury Christ Church University.


    The delivery of the course will take place over 3 hours one evening per week

    Learning and teaching strategies will therefore aim to:

    - involve you in the learning process as an active participant;

    - utilise experience as a valuable part of your personal programme;

    - provide academic tutoring and professional advice to support learning;

    - facilitate opportunities for you to study both collectively and independently;

    - encourage an open interchange of ideas, experiences and opinions with employers and fellow students;

    - support you in developing action plans to assist your professional learning.

    In Year 1, you will study 60 credits at Levels 4 and 60 credits at Level 5 (120 credits in total).

    In Year 2, you will study 120 credits at Level 6.


    This is a work-based course so your placement means you are continuously linking theory to industry-based practice throughout. Most assignments require you to specifically draw upon, and use, your experience in your work-setting. All students on the course work in a relevant professional setting.


    You will be taught by both London South East Colleges and Canterbury staff from a teaching team that consists of highly qualified academics with a range of expertise and experience. All our team members hold teaching qualifications and some hold Masters qualifications and have experience in delivering research-informed teaching. All the staff have many years experience of practical ‘hands on’ professional work in the sector.


    - Upon successful completion of the degree, you will be awarded the BA(Hons) Education and Professional Training

    - You could go on to further study such as a Master’s Degree

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