22 July, 2022 | Posted by Michelle Hogan

Why Study a BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies level 7 at Portobello Institute?

Why Study a BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies level 7 at Portobello Institute?

You may be working in the early years sector with your level 6 qualification and wondering why you would study a BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies degree at Portobello Institute. 

Portobello has been delivering early childhood studies programmes for over 40 years and we have heard a lot of different reasons why people want to gain their degree in early childhood. 

We are going to guide you through some of the most common reasons why people choose to study this degree and you may have other reasons too which we are more than happy to speak with you about or answer your questions on. 

If you have any questions, you can contact our Early Years Admissions Advisor Jennifer Matteazzi by booking a one-to-one call with her here, emailing jennifer.matteazi@portobelloinstitute.com or calling 01 892 0031.

Reasons to study a BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies Degree at Portobello Institute

1. Personal Accomplishment - One of the most common reasons people working in the early years sector do their degree is to feel a sense of pride and accomplishment in themselves. Many people want to prove to themselves, their colleagues, their friends or family that they are able to study to this level, they want to challenge themselves beyond what they ever thought possible and with the support offered at Portobello they often find that they surprise themselves with how well they can actually do.

2. Keep up with the Sector - It can feel like a lot of pressure to keep up with how quickly the early years sector in Ireland is changing. It is moving at a rapid rate to become degree-led with more and more people going on to BA (Hons) and MA level each year. This can seem daunting if you are at level 6 and feel like you have a lot of experience and may not need further studies or if you are just starting out. This is your decision to make, however we have found that our students say 'they didn't know what they didn't know' before taking on the degree and always come out the other side with new perspectives, new understandings, insights, knowledge and also confidence to apply that knowledge and speak up about issues they wouldn't have felt confident about before.

3. Gain Higher Capitation - Many people do their BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies purely to qualify for higher capitation and this is a big motivating factor. This also makes you more employable and puts you in a position to negotiate in different roles at different jobs until you find the one you really want to work in.

4. Follow Your Passion - We find that people working with children every day in the early years sector are passionate about what they do. They love spending their time exploring the curious and interesting minds of young children and it really lights up their days. Studying a topic that you are passionate about can help to bring you back to all the reasons why you love that topic and your role in the first place, it can refresh and reinvigorate that love and vocation you have for the work and the children. 

5. Gain Confidence - Many people who do their BA (Ord) Early Childhood Studies have to overcome a couple of different barriers around confidence before signing up to the course. First of all there is the confidence to even consider studying and put yourself forward for that, then there is the confidence to reach out and ask questions, plus if you get the far, it can be a huge leap of faith to actually show up on day one and start to take part in classes and learn how to write assignments. At Portobello Institute we have experienced tutors who empathise with people from all walks of life and with varying levels of confidence. Our tutors guide and support you if you are nervous about using the computer, learning how to reference, finding resources online, logging in, using video calls or speaking up in class, they will make you feel comfortable so you can thrive in your learning environment. Not only will you gain confidence in your studies but you will also be more confident once you have completed your studies, and you will feel like you can back up the knowledge that you share with colleagues and parents.

6. Accessibility - In the past, studying and gaining a degree wasn't as accessible as it is today. Now, if you have a computer or laptop with internet connection you will be able to gain your qualification from anywhere in the world. This means studying from the comfort of your own desk at home, no traffic or commutes, no childminders for hours in the evening while you travel to a classroom. Blended learning (traditional delivery but online) has motivated a lot of people to want to now gain their qualifications as the work/life/study balance is easier to achieve. 

7. New Career Opportunities - Gaining a level 7 degree at Portobello Institute not only qualifies you for higher capitation, it also opens new possibilities and career opportunities. With this qualification you could become a quality lead in chains of childcare settings or become a setting manager. This is often the natural career progression for practitioners wanting to move up the ladder and expand their opportunities.

8. Further Study - Graduates at Portobello Institute often find that once they have compelted their level 7, they get the 'study bug' and want to continue with their BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies too. We support our students moving from one level to the next and they often find that the transition from level 7 to 8 easier than level 6 to 7 so at this stage the bulk of your hardest work is already done. Level 8 is a research project which you can carry out in your setting and learners often find this more engaging, interactive and interesting that learning theory which can also make it easier. A BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies is a level 8 qualification that opens up a  world of career opportunities outside of the early years setting which is why many people choose to go to this level. With this qualification you can work for the inspectorate, legislative bodies, department jobs. You can also gain a teaching qualification and tutor on level 5 and 6 programmes, or if you have Irish in your leaving cert you can use this path as a gateway to a Master's for primary school teaching. Others branch into child psychology, inclusive education, special needs education and many other areas. 

Over half of the people who gained a level 7 qualification in Ireland in the 2019/2020 academic year came from Portobello Institute. The rest came from all the other providers combined. We are the sector's top educator of choice for this degree, we have years of experience, tutors who know your name and care about your personal situation plus excellent e-learning technology, payment plans and more than make gaining your level 7 as accessible as possible at Portobello Institute.


If you have any questions or are interested in booking on to a course, you can contact our Early Years Admissions Advisor Jennifer Matteazzi by booking a one-to-one call with her here, emailing jennifer.matteazi@portobelloinstitute.com or calling 01 892 0031. Visit our Early Years department here.

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