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Institute of Early Childhood

Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood Education)

This program is a four year full time or equivalent part time degree that qualifies graduates to work as teachers with children aged from birth to 12 years. This means that graduates find employment in a range of early childhood settings such as long day care centres, pre-schools and in primary schools.


Are you a recent school leaver? 

School leavers who have completed their HSC (or equivalent) and have a ATAR score are eligible to apply. This ATAR score is used by the University to determine eligibility to enter the program. The minimum ATAR varies from year to year. Students wishing to enter on the basis of their HSC result must apply through UAC, the University Admission Centre. Application forms are usually available in newsagents and via the web.

For entry into the program at the beginning of the following year, applications close on September 30 of the previous year. Late applications are accepted but will incur a late fee.

Mid year entry is sometimes, but not always, available.

If you completed your HSC some years ago you could also apply for the Jubilee mature age scheme.


Are you a mature age student?

There is a mature age entry scheme that applies to applicants who are 21 or over.

The Jubilee Scheme 

This scheme is available to those students who are 21 or over and who have not had the opportunity to study previously. Preference is given to those applicants who do not have the necessary academic qualifications for entry to University. You can apply for this scheme if:

  • you will be 21 years of age or over on March 1
  • you wish to study on campus at Macquarie University - not as an external student
  • you have not previously been enrolled in a University course.

Applicants who have an Associate Diploma or Diploma from an accredited provider can apply through this scheme.

Contact: The Student Centre on (02) 9850 7314 or click here for an application form.


Are you a student who already holds a university degree or a partially completed degree?

If you are in this category you must apply through UAC.

Contact UAC on 9752 0200 or visit the UAC web site.


Are you a student who holds a Diploma or Associate Diploma in Centre Based Child Care?

If you are in this category then you can apply though any or all of those listed below:

  • UAC
  • The Jubilee Scheme (if 21 or over) - internal, on campus attendance
  • The Non- Award Program - internal or external study

Do you wish to commence your studies as a Non Award student?

The Non Award Program makes it possible for students to enrol in one or more individual units (or subjects) without formally being enrolled for an award (that is, the BEd (ECE)). Applicants who completed their HSC in the previous year are not permitted to enrol in non-award units unless their ATAR is above a certain score. The units in which you enrol in are exactly the same as those undertaken by students admitted into the degree program. Once you have completed 12 credit points with an overall grade point average of at least 2.0 you are able to change and have your study counted towards your degree. Non award students are full fee paying students (not HECS based) and payment of fees must be made early in the semester.

Applications are accepted until late February for semester 1 units and late July for semester 2 units although a late fee will apply after earlier deadlines.

Contact: The Centre for Open Education (COE) 9850 7470 or click here for an application form.


Do you wish to study full time or part time?

The BEd (ECE) is a 96-credit point degree. Each unit that you undertake attracts a certain number of credit points. To be classified as a full time student you must be enrolled in 17 or more credit points over a year. You are classified as a part time student if you are enrolled in fewer than 17 credit points over a year. It will take you 4 years to complete the degree if you pass all units and are a full time student each year. As a part time student the length of time it takes to complete the degree will vary according to the number of units you take in a year. Most units are only offered during the day 9-6 pm. Successful applicants can enrol in this program as either a full time or part time student. You can change your pattern of enrolment from full time to part time or vice versa throughout your degree; you are not locked into either attendance pattern. Details of these programs can be obtained from the Undergraduate Student Services Officer.


Do you wish to study internally or externally?

Most units in the B Ed (ECE) are available in the internal or external mode and most can be taken in either mode by all students. The exception here is Reflective Practice (practicum) units. These units (five in all) can only be taken externally by those students who already have a teaching qualification or the TAFE (or equivalent) Diploma/Associate Diploma in Child Care (centre based studies). Unless you have these qualifications you MUST attend classes in the Reflective Practice units on campus for 3-4 hours each week throughout the whole semester (13 weeks). Each Reflective Practice unit involves a 2 or 3 week placement in an early childhood setting.

If you work in early childhood services, one of these placements can be in your work place. Some can be taken outside the Sydney metropolitan area (which includes Newcastle, the Blue Mountains and Wollongong). Some, however, must be taken in the Sydney metropolitan area.

Studying externally or by distance education means that your study materials are sent to you or are available on-line. The materials may include CDs of the lectures, a study guide and may also involve some web based component. You complete the same assignments as those students enrolled internally. An additional requirement of most external units is that you have to attend On Campus Sessions each semester for some intensive teaching and learning. In most cases attendance at these sessions is compulsory with the length of time usually between 1 and 3 days for each unit. The dates for these sessions are printed in the Handbook of Undergraduate Studies which is available at the beginning of each academic year. Students are able to combine internal and external units in their program in any year or semester while remembering the conditions for external enrolment in the reflective practice units.


Do you wish to apply for credit for previous study? 

If you have completed studies at another tertiary institution you may be eligible for credit for previous studies. Partially completed diplomas or associate diplomas or certificates do not attract any credit. Successful completion of any subject in another degree from a recognised university will normally attract some credit even if the degree is not in the education field. Once you have been offered a place you should apply for Credit for Previous Studies.

Those applicants who have the Diploma in Child Care (Centre Based) or equivalent from an appropriate institution will receive specific exemptions from three units in the first year of the program. You will be given academic advice on enrolment about how best to organise your study program.

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