Child and Youth Studies BA (Hons)

What is special about this course?

A career in child and youth work is always going to present a diversity of situations and challenges. Add to this the unique urban and rural issues that evolve from a Highlands and Islands environment and you have another set of complex issues with which to engage.

This leading BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies degree will give you a rigorous understanding of the specific concerns associated with child and youth issues in this region and within the broader context of the UK and Europe.

The course is taught entirely online via the university's virtual learning environment (VLE) and you will be supported locally by your personal academic tutor face-to-face, via email, telephone and online, which means that you can fit your studies around your personal and professional commitments.

Special features

  • You will carry out a research project related to your work or area of special interest
  • The course is specifically relevant to the needs of rural areas
  • Flexible course which is available entirely online, meaning you can fit your studies around your own commitments, and from anywhere within the UK
  • Ideal preparation for a career in child and youth work
  • You can study individual modules for personal or professional development (CPD)

Entry requirements

  • 3 Scottish Highers at grade C or above, OR
  • 2 A levels at grade C or above
  • Applicants with relevant professional qualifications or experience are also welcomed and will be considered on an individual basis
  • You are required to attend an interview, in person or by telephone, to discuss the course in detail and to explain the method of teaching

Advanced entry to year two of the degree:

Year 1 - CertHE

View our interactive introduction to the course

Core modules are:

  • Introduction to social policy
  • Nature of health
  • Introduction to the early childhood philosophy and practice
  • Psychology of developmental and individual differences
  • Sociology of the family
  • Foundations of research


Year 3 - BA

Core modules are:

  • Legislation and childhood
  • Issues of risk
  • Literature review
  • Comparative childcare: a European perspective

Option modules include:

  • Ethical issues
  • Introduction to effective management and leadership
  • Promoting and enhancing parenting
  • Promotion of diversity and equality
  • Advanced (research) methods in psychology
  • Practical research and analysis skills
  • Acquisition of language
  • Developmental psychology: learning in the classroom
  • Alcohol and drug studies
  • Healthy people, healthy places: challenges for public health

Year 2 - DipHE

Core modules are:

  • Recognising and challenging discrimination and disadvantage
  • Working in partnership
  • Adolescence

Option modules, from which you must choose two, include:

  • Practical research and analysis skills
  • Advanced study skills
  • Play and childhood
  • Providing a curriculum for life
  • Care and control
  • Cognition
  • Health psychology
  • Qualitative research methods
  • Principles and foundations of health promotion
  • Specialist provision
  • Contemporary issues
  • The individual, society and the health continuum
  • The urban rural divide

Year 4 - BA (Hons)

Core modules are:

  • Dissertation
  • Professional issues 1

Option modules include:

  • Comparative health studies
  • Developmental disorders
  • Understanding crime, culture and society
  • Child and adolescent mental health
  • Food and behaviour
  • Professional issues 2
  • A globalised view of childcare
  • Disability and society
  • Abnormal psychology
  • Social inclusion and exclusion
  • Computers, cognition and e-learning 

How will I study my course?

  • You will study through supported online learning using the university's virtual learning environment (VLE)
  • Full-time
  • Part-time (structured)
  • Part-time (unstructured)
  • When applying you will select the college where you will enrol and receive support from your personal academic tutor face-to-face and/or via email, telephone or online.
  • You will also be required to attend a face-to-face induction at your local college at the start of your course

How long will my course last?

  • Full-time: 4 years @ 40 hours per week
  • Part-time (structured): 8 years @ 10 hours per week
  • Part-time (unstructured): variable for continuing professional development (CPD)

Number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in lectures and your own time spent on individual study and research.

How much will my course cost?

For students normally domiciled in Scotland or the European Union/EEA (outside of the UK) and with a term time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

  2016-17 2017-18*
Full-time (120 credit modules) per year
£1,820 £1,820
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year £645 £645
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module) £215 £215

*The Home-Scotland/EU fee has not yet been agreed by the Scottish Government.  The indicative fee level is shown in the table.

Rest of UK students

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland) and with a term-time address in Scotland, studying this course full-time, the following fees apply:

  Level 2016-17 2017-18
    Full-time Full-time
Year 1 CertHE £8,000 p.a. £8,000 p.a.
Year 2 DipHE £8,000 p.a. £8,000 p.a.
Year 3 Degree £8,000 p.a. £8,000 p.a.
Year 4 Honours free** free**

**4th year free only for students studying full-time who have paid for the previous 3 years at the University of the Highlands and Islands.

Part-time (per 20 credit module) - £1,340 (2016-17 and 2017-18).

Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

There are a number of funding options available to UK and EU students to help you pay for your studies and your cost of living whilst studying.

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland) or EU/EEA without a term-time address in Scotland, ie studying from their home country, the following fees apply::

  2016-17 2017-18
Full-time online per year (120 credit modules) £5,400 £5,400
Part-time online (per 20 credit module) £900 £900

What funding can I apply for?

External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact your enrolling college for more information.  

What can I do on completion of my course?

Once you have successful completed this BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies course, you might like to consider careers in child and social care, education or in a variety of health-related fields.

Can I progress into further study?

You can progress from the BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies to the following postgraduate courses:

Is there more information available online?

You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.

What our students are saying

I'm currently in my third year of the BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies after successfully completing the HNC Early Education which gave me direct entry to the second year of the degree. I had thought about going to Glasgow to study but after looking at my options I decided to study at Argyll College UHI in Oban as it was closer to home and I could fit my work and volunteering around my studies better.

Emma Roxburgh, current third year BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies student, Argyll College UHI campus

I was offered a place at another university but with the rigidity of the timetable and having spent the last two years in a classroom I was attracted by the online degree – it gives me more flexibility in when I choose to study. I have a part-time job and also support my partner with his business, plus I prefer to study first thing in the morning which leaves me the rest of the day for other things.

Susan Taylor gained direct entry to year two of the BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies after completing an HNC in Early Education and Childcare.

All of the lecturers were extremely supportive and always available to speak to. They took a lot of time to get to know each student personally and I plan to keep in touch with them in the future.

BA (Hons) Child and Youth Studies graduate Amanda MacDonald who then went on to graduate from the Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (Primary) and now works as a primary school teacher in the Inverness area.

Apply for Child and Youth Studies BA (Hons)

I want to start in Jan/Feb 2017 or Aug/Sep 2017 or Jan/Feb 2018

International applicants should apply using the UHI International application form. Please download and print the form, complete and return using the address indicated. More information is available for international applicants at our international student page

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI). UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.

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