Course Overview

This is a professional qualification that is recognised by the National Youth Agency (NYA) and the Joint Negotiating Committee for Youth and Community Workers (JNC). It can be studied at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate levels. This programme is subject to professional validation planned for early 2018.

If you would like to support and encourage young people and adults to reach their potential, would enjoy face to face conversational work in our local communities and feel able to relate to people from all backgrounds, then a rewarding career in Youth and Community work will enable you to achieve your goal. As a student studying on this programme, you will be learning alongside and within these communities embracing the key themes of diversity, equality, inclusion and ultimately social justice. This is a community that has a long rich history in youth and community work and greatly supports the student experience.

We are a diverse teaching team still immersed in practice, adopting a philosophy of experiential learning that embraces education as both an enjoyable and challenging experience. This means that whilst the academic setting is vital to your development there is a high emphasis on widening the breadth and depth of your learning experience. You will have the opportunity to undertake field work placement opportunities across the three years of your study in a variety of settings, locally, nationally and internationally in countries such as Finland, Spain, Poland, Norway and others. To support your learning, you will benefit from the support of experienced practitioners in the field as you cultivate relationships within both academic, youth work and community work settings as part of your portfolio of learning.

Our focus is to equip you with the skills and knowledge that enable you to learn and develop alongside a profession that is engaging with change and new and emerging communities of practice. Our programme will support you on your professional, academic and personal journey and will provide you with the requisite skills and knowledge to transform you into a competent and professional practitioner within the rewarding and fulfilling sector of youth and community work.

To help inform your decision, our Student Ambassadors would be more than willing to share their experiences with you as part of the application process.


Course Structure

The programme is based around three supervised fieldwork practice experiences and 17 Modules organised over three levels of study. Applicants employed in youth and community work settings are required to undertake an alternative placement. The course will provide you with the knowledge, skills and abilities to work in complex, diverse and changing political and economic climates.

Modules Covered

Year One, Level Four:

  • Human Development and Learning (20 credits)
  • Facilitating Change (20 credits)
  • Foundations of Youth and Community Work (20 credits)
  • The Politics of Social Policy (20 credits)
  • Personal, Academic and Practitioner Development (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice Placement 1 (20 credits).

Year Two, Level Five:

  • Questions of Identity (20 credits)
  • Taking Action in Communities (20 credits)
  • Interprofessional Working (20 credits)
  • The Professional Role (20 credits)
  • Practitioner Research (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice Placement 2 (20 credits).

Year Three, Level Six:

  • Managing and Leading (20 credits)
  • Globalisation, Diversity and Difference (20 credits)
  • Issues in Contemporary Society (20 credits)
  • Dissertation (40 credits)
  • Professional Practice Placement 3 (20 credits).

Learning Methods

The course aims to provide you with the theoretical knowledge and development of independent study skills to succeed at Honours Degree level. You will develop a deeper understanding of the application of theory to practice and will acquire evaluation skills through building research skills over all three years of the course and undertaking increasingly independent practitioner research activities in a range of modules. Generic study skills support is available to you. 

You will interact with the curriculum through involvement in student led seminars, presentations and discussions. The development of independent learning and leadership skills, including self-evaluation and conscious awareness of effective learning techniques, is promoted through interactive teaching approaches such as personal tutorials, email and Moodle. You are also required to undertake independent research. 

Teaching Methods

Teaching and learning are conducted through a variety of methods, which include lectures, group work, seminars, presentations and independent focused research for the dissertation module. Blended learning through the medium of the Moodle (the College's virtual learning environment) is a key feature of the course.


We use a range of assessment methods. Our aim is for you to develop your knowledge through both understanding and use. We will clearly explain the task and the assessment criteria within a module outline and an assignment brief. Continuous assessment is an integral part of your progress and learning. The course is based on a variety of assessments methods such as presentations, assignments, seminars, research papers and fieldwork portfolios. There are no examinations.

Work Placement/Fieldwork

Fieldwork placements play an essential part in the professional training of youth and community development workers. It is essential that you have the opportunity to develop your skills and knowledge to a level which equips you to deliver and lead work in a range of professional settings. Placements can happen locally, nationally and internationally, we have opportunities available in Finland, Spain, Poland and Norway as examples. Therefore, the course provides the opportunity over three years for you to experience work in diverse contexts and demonstrate your competence in performing a range of youth and community work roles. The course will provide you with the opportunity to relate theory to practice and develop theory based on practice through the integration of the placement experience in to the overall learning programme.

What's Next?

On graduation, you will be able to gain employment within a variety of settings with young people, adults and community groups. For example:
• Centre or club-based youth work
• Secondary schools and extended school settings
• Neighbourhood community work
• Detached work
• Issue-based youth and community work
• Social work services with communities and young people
• Community health projects (including drugs and alcohol work)
• Unemployment and training projects
• Housing and homelessness projects
• Work with young people and adults with special needs
• Criminal justice work
• Outdoor education
• Project work

If you successfully complete the BA (Hons) degree in Youth Work and Community Development you could then go on to study on the PG Dip/ MA Youth Work and Community Development programme.

Did You Know?

The BA (Hons) degree programme provides a unique learning opportunity to help you to to develop your personal and professional practice through participating in three practice based placements over the three years of study. Such opportunities will enable you to experience the diverse practice settings and context of youth and community work. The programme will also enable you to gather experience and insight into the changing policy and legal implications for practice. The final year placement experience also enables you to focus on a particular area of practice where you have an interest. You could also support this experience by carrying out research in this field. Such opportunities will enhance your CV, practice portfolio and their employability.

Entry Requirements

80 UCAS tariff points with five GCSEs including three at Grade C/4-5 or above, one of which must be English, and two at A level or equivalent, such as BTEC, GNVQ Advanced/Advanced VCE, OU Credits or successful completion of an accredited Access Course.

For UCAS tariff points grade combinations click:

You must also have evidence of at least six months' voluntary or paid work experience, including appropriate practice, with young people aged 11+. You must also demonstrate a commitment to all aspects of the course, including appropriate practice, which seeks to contribute to personal and professional development in anti-oppressive contexts.

A satisfactory DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) and health check are also required.

If you meet the above requirements you will be invited for an interview. 

Information, Advice and Support

Careers Guidance

Help with choosing the right course and with thinking about where this might take you in the future.
Tel: 01274 433043

Learning Support

Support for applicants with a learning difficulty, disability, illness or other learning need.
Tel: 01274 438999

For all other queries call 01274 433333

Fees Information

We believe that quality degrees should not cost the earth. That's why our competitive tuition fees provide you with a quality experience that includes more taught hours than those at most universities, good levels of tutor access, and support with small teaching groups. More information on our competitive tuition fees

Programme Specification