Level 3 Diploma in Childcare

"I found the training really rewarding and invaluable. My tutor was very helpful and supportive."

Michelle Nursery Nurse

The qualification

This is a comprehensive course which is designed to help you develop the skills and knowledge for working in the early years sector. It provides a holistic view of child development to help you develop the practical skills required for working with children, and will prepare you to work with children and their families in a variety of settings.

The course

This part-time course covers all areas of children's development and learning including current curriculums and how theoretical learning underpins working with children. It should take 21 months to complete. You'll attend monthly study groups at a local training centre and will be given assignments to complete, plus have regular observations in your workplace.

If you receive Government funding for the course - check our funding finder to see if you're eligible - you'll also study functional skills in ICT along with Employment Rights & Responsibilities and Personal Learning & Thinking Skills. You also need to have achieved grades A-C in GCSE maths and English before you complete the qualification. The GCSE tuition is built into the monthly study days and you'll get lots of personal support to help you gain the necessary grades.

An Apprentice needs to be in training for at least a year and a day, which equates to 1,560 hours – or 30 hours a week – of employment. It is expected that 20% of these hours are spent completing off the job training.

Subjects covered

  • Understanding children's early years education and development
  • Implementing the Early Years Foundation Stage
  • Diversity, equality and inclusion in early years settings
  • Planning and providing effective teaching in early years settings
  • Making accurate and productive use of assessment in early years settings
  • Developing effective and informed professional practice in early years settings
  • Promoting the health, safety and well-being of children in early years settings
  • Child protection and safeguarding
  • Partnership working in early years

Optional units

  • Understanding how to promote play and learning
  • Supporting outdoor play
  • Supporting disabled children and those with specific requirement
  • Supporting children at meal times
  • Caring for the physical and nutritional needs of babies and young children
  • Supporting the development of positive behaviour in children

Work and assessment

You'll find all the resources for your course on our Online Training Academy where you'll also be able to submit your work and study for your functional skills and GCSEs using the BSKB test practice section. Assessment is by workplace observations, practical tasks at work, answering questions and assignment writing.

Entry requirements

To take this course as an Apprenticeship learner you will need either a Level 2 in Childcare, three years experience or a Level 3 in Health and Social Care, plus Level 1 Functional Skills in Maths and English. The same criteria applies to learners funding their course with an Advanced Learning Loan who need to be at Entry 3 Level in English.


Level 3 Childcare can lead you on to the Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care, Children and Young People's Services or you may want to consider the Level 3 management course to progress your leadership skills and move into a management role.

Need some help?

020 3700 4294


The Qualification

Courses can also be delivered at your own work premises for groups. Contact us to discuss your options.

Awesome right?
But how much does it cost?

Try our funding finder to calculate how you could fund this course. We have some Government funding so your course could be free of charge!

Funding finder

“Through the course I gained loads more confidence with new ideas that I could take into the nursery and put into practice every day”

Kaylie Nursery Nurse Read Kaylie's Story