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Educational aims

By studying the five modules in our Diploma of Higher Education in Working with Young People you will have gained an understanding of what work in this area involves. You will also have the underpinning knowledge, skills and abilities to work successfully with young people, professionally, in informal education settings, towards their personal learning and development.

Learning outcomes

The diploma provides opportunities for you to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, qualities, skills and other attributes in the following areas.

Knowledge and understanding

You will be able to demonstrate a sound knowledge and critical understanding of:

  • the principles, purposes and values underpinning informal education work with young people
  • the issues facing young people including policies and provisions that impact on their lives
  • the role of curricula, planning and evaluation for the learning and development of young people
  • the approaches to developing appropriate relationships with individuals and groups of young people
  • the role of leadership and management in work with young people.

Cognitive skills

You should be able to:

  • relate knowledge and understanding to practice in critical and reflective ways
  • identify, reflect on and critique your own values and those of others
  • evaluate practice, drawing on a variety of forms of evidence, from a variety of sources, and form conclusions and recommendations
  • show evidence of reflective practice through written accounts.

Practical and/or professional skills

On successful completion of the diploma you will be able to demonstrate:

  • the ability to work effectively both as a member of a team and as an individual
  • the knowledge and skills that underpin good practice and apply theory to practice
  • the ability to design, implement and evaluate programmes and /or activities that support young people’s development and learning
  • the ability to lead and manage a change in practice
  • the ability to apply an understanding of ethics to work with young people
  • the ability to work in a way that promotes the safety and well being of young people.

Key skills


The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you can:

  • communicate information, arguments and ideas effectively using appropriate styles and language.

Information literacy

The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you can:

  • identify, select and critically evaluate information or data for specific purposes.

Numeracy and IT

The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you can:

  • use ICT skills as appropriate.

Problem solving

The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you have:

  • become aware of different approaches and can compare them critically in relation to issues and problems in work with young people.

Learning how to learn

The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you can:

  • plan and manage time, resources and information.

Personal learning and performance

The successful completion of the diploma will be evidence that you can:

  • recognise and record your own skills and knowledge
  • plan future development in relation to personal and career goals.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

Knowledge and understanding of young people is developed through the main teaching materials and in-text questions, tasks and activities to support your learning. The main teaching material is offered through supported open learning modules with associated material including module reading texts, audio-visual material, and directed reading. Summative assessment is by written tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) and by end-of-module reports or examinations where appropriate. Tutors support your development across all learning outcomes through tutorials, written feedback on assignments and online support.

Cognitive skills are assessed by module assignments. These will allow you to demonstrate your ability to structure a clear and reasoned argument and to critically analyse module issues. The Personal Development Plan and Work-Based Learning Project will offer you the opportunity to demonstrate independent thinking skills; to demonstrate your understanding of theoretical concepts and the underpinning principles for working with young people in a work-based context; to demonstrate ability to integrate theoretical and practical knowledge, and to show evidence of reflective practice and to use appropriate methods of enquiry.

Key skills are referenced to QCA National Standards and are promoted within learning materials and as part of continuous assessment. Assessment criteria of TMAs require you to demonstrate your ability to communicate effectively and appropriately in a variety of formats. Learning skills focusing on planning, self-assessment, identifying strengths and weaknesses, setting priorities and targets, and reviewing and reflecting are a feature of the Personal Development Plan, the general approach to key skills and of the work-based learning components. Teamwork will be fostered through work-based projects and case studies and by encouraging students to work together electronically on web-based tasks. Assessment may include witness testimony from colleagues on contributions to team efforts. Opportunities to develop basic ICT skills will be provided through an optional short module for those who do not have these skills already.

Professional skills are developed as part of an increased awareness and understanding of good practice in supporting young people’s learning and development by means of teaching materials and work based reflective practice. The assessment of practice skills is through module work and the work-based learning component of the diploma, the submission of assignments, evidence-based portfolios and a work-based project file. There may be some development of team working skills through the use of web-based tasks.