Cardiff School of Education & Social Policy>Courses>Education Studies and Social Policy - BA (Hons) Degree

Education Studies and Social Policy - BA (Hons) Degree (Flexible)


This new flexible degree in Education Studies and Social Policy has been designed to develop creative and adaptable graduates who have a strong sense of social responsibility and who are equipped to be pro-active in influencing and having a positive and lasting impact on people's lives. The degree gives you the opportunity to learn more about the challenges facing society by combining a range of relevant social and educational subjects, enabling you to consider these in various international and comparative contexts.

The BA (Hons) Education Studies and Social Policy (*Flexible) programme is the only degree of its kind in Wales and, within the context of the UK, represents the only programme of its name and qualification that offers flexibility within the programme structure to facilitate practice-based learning and working with people and communities. The blend of core and optional modules within the programme creates a balance between providing students with foundations of knowledge and skills pertinent to both disciplines whilst giving students sufficient autonomy to pursue particular interests within Education Studies and Social Policy. 

During Year 1, you will receive bespoke guidance regarding your progression choices in Year 2. You may choose to stay on this flexible degree or transfer to one of our suite of single Honours degrees (e.g. BA Primary Education Studies, BA Early Years Education and Professional Practice with EYPS, BA Teaching & Learning Studies). Therefore, in Years 2 and 3, you will either follow a personalised module pathway, or a structured pathway via one of our Single Honours degrees. 

Other related courses:

BSc (Hons) Housing Studies

BA (Hons) Early Years Education & Professional Practice (with EYPS)

BA (Hons) Primary Education Studies

BSc (Hons) Education, Psychology & Special Educational Needs

Course Content

Year One / Level 4: 

  • Studying Education 1 (20 credits): This module provides an overview of the historical developments within the field of education since 1870, to help facilitate an understanding of the contemporary system. Furthermore, the module explores the relationships between education, society, politics, and the individual. Finally, the module aims to develop key transferrable skills relating to academic study and writing, to support the transition into Higher Education.
  • Studying Education 2 (20 credits): This module builds upon 'Studying Education [1] to develop students' knowledge of contemporary debates and controversies, to deepen your understanding of the key themes and strands that characterise the field of education studies. Moreover, the module highlights the cyclic nature of key issues, and reflects on the underlying explanations for the persistence of certain patterns.
  • What is the Welfare State? (20 credits): This module will enable students to develop an understanding of the role and evolution of the welfare state. It will look at issues of equality, fairness, and social justice and explore the link between individual and community wellbeing and the impact of policy. 
  • What is politics? (20 credits): This module will introduce students to key political thinkers, approaches, and institutions in a UK and devolved context. Students will look at how political decisions are made, how policy is made, and how these decisions impact on day to day life. 
  • Alternative Sustainable Teaching and Learning (40 credits): During this module you will explore the range of options and opportunities that this degree provides and will assist you in shaping the future direction of your studies. You will be guided by a range of specialist practitioners and professionals who will provide information and experiences linked to the options available to you next year. This will include bespoke input from the careers service, work placement and job shadowing opportunities that will allow you to refine your personal subject-specific focus and develop your reflective skills. You might choose to spend time working in an adult education centre, a youth club, a pupil referral unit, a crèche or any other setting where education is happening. The module aims to give you chance to find out about all the age groups, settings and contexts that you might want to work in when you graduate.

Year Two / Level 5: 

At Level 5 students may choose to stay on this flexible degree or transfer to one of the suite of single honours degrees (e.g. Primary Education Studies, Teaching and Learning Studies, Early Years Professional Practice with EYPS). Students will study modules totalling 120 credits in Year 5 and Year 6. If students choose to stay on this flexible degree, the course content is as follows:

  • Becoming a Researcher (20 credits): This module will develop your ability to critically engage with peer reviewed academic sources. You will examine critical issues in relation to undertaking research including ethical issues and gaining informed consent/assent. A range of methodological approaches and innovative research tools, will be evaluated to provide experience in their implementation and analysis of data.
  • Work Placement (20 credits): How does what you learn on the course relate to professional settings? What skills do you already have and what skills do you need to further develop that enhance employability? This module requires you to have already completed a work experience placement at the end of the first year, and it will continue to develop employability skills and encourage thinking about careers following graduation. The placement would normally take place in a setting supporting additional learning needs, though this is flexible based on your personal needs and experience of the previous work placement. You may also have the opportunity to further enhance your employability by extending your placement by mutual agreement with the provider.
  • Social Policy across the Lifecourse (20 credits): This module aims focusses on how international human rights duties, legislation, and policy impact on the lives of individuals and communities. It will focus on the interrelationship between individuals' needs, the rights they hold, and the commitments from governments to meet these needs. For their assessment, students will use a case study to develop an argument around how distinct needs are or are not met in a national context.   
  • Understanding Inequalities (20 credits): This module challenges students to understand issues of inequality. It looks at the concepts of poverty and multiple disadvantage and the impact of these on communities. Students will analyse the issue of structural inequality and how partnerships between organisations can be used to address the impact of this.  

Students then choose to study 2 optional modules (40 credits) from the following options:

  • Pedagogy and Practice in the Early Years (20 credits)*: 
  • Preparing to Teach (20 credits)* 
  • Community and Holistic Approaches in Primary Education Contexts (20 credits)*
  • Online Educator (20 credits)*
  • TESOL (20 credits)*
  • Regeneration and Sustainability (20 credits)*
  • Campaigning and Community Engagement (20 credits)*
  • International Approaches to Welfare (20 credits)*

Year Three / Level 6:

Independent Project OR Work-based Learning Project (40 credits)
During this year you will complete an independent research or enquiry-based project of a practical or theoretical nature. You may choose to build on the options that you explored last year or you might want to tailor your project to support your future career aspirations. The project is the culmination of your three years of study, building upon the knowledge gained in year one and the understanding developed in year two it allows you to refine your skills and will enable you to demonstrate independence in your approach to research and enhance project planning experience. You will supported and guided through then process by an academic supervisor. 

Students will also study a further 80 credits from the following optional modules:

  • Future of Education (20 credits)*
  • Inclusive Practice in the Early Years (20 credits)*
  • Alternative Approaches in Education (20 credits)*
  • Global and Comparative Education (20 credits)*
  • Homelessness (20 credits)*
  • Global Justice and Human Rights (20 credits)*
  • Social Entrepreneurship (20 credits)*

    *Optional modules

Learning & Teaching

Course delivery 

Learning and teaching methods include lectures, seminars, workshops, tutorials, project work, work-based learning, placement and practical sessions.  These have been designed to allow you to fulfil the educational aims and demonstrate the learning outcomes of modules.  They have also been designed so that you are equipped to meet the needs of employers following graduation.  We use ICT throughout all modules and place an emphasis on the collaborative and social aspects of learning.

The blend of core and optional modules creates a balance between providing you with sufficient foundational knowledge and skills relevant to the disciplines of Education Studies and Social Policy whilst also providing you with sufficient choice to pursue particular interests within both fields.

Each 20 credit module has an average of 24 hours of taught hours. Every module also contains directed study tasks that will need to be completed outside of the taught hours. 

Student support

There are a range of support structures available to students both within the teaching teams and within the university as a whole. These include personal tutors who are available to help you with any aspect of university life that you need assistance with and module tutors who will advise you on assessment requirements. Disability services provide bespoke packages to enable access to learning for students with additional needs. 

In addition to the support provided by staff and university services, learning is underpinned by the university's virtual learning environment (i.e. Moodle) which provides 24hr access teaching materials and resources via the web from wherever you are. 


On campus there are range of specialist facilities to support different types of teaching and learning, ranging from formal lecture theatres to outdoor learning spaces. There is a fully equipped early education space, a sensory room, an observation room and a media suite that are all used to allow students to experience authentic learning and teaching. 

You will also be encouraged to be involved in supporting and setting up community projects alongside university lecturers.

Teaching staff

The backgrounds of the teaching team are diverse, reflecting the breadth of the field of education and social policy. Education staff have experience ranging from early years to post-compulsory age phases as well as specialist knowledge in areas such as curriculum and pedagogy, creativity in education, English Language Teaching/TESOL, technology in learning and additional learning needs. Social Policy staff have a broad range of experience which includes working in politics, frontline housing services, social work, and for policy organisations. 


Assessment strategies are varied and designed to support and enhance your learning experience as well as your employability. Assessments are intended to develop your knowledge, ability, skill, and critical understanding. Examples of assessment types include:

  • Written coursework (e.g. essay, report)
  • Project work (e.g. research, community project)
  • Placement
  • Portfolio
  • Presentation

The programme has also been designed to ensure that your learning and progression are incremental with achieving the learning outcomes and demonstrating the attributes expected at each level of study.  

Employability & Careers

The BA (Hons) Education Studies and Social Policy (*Flexible) degree has been designed to develop creative and adaptable graduates who have a strong sense of social responsibility and who are equipped to be pro-active in influencing and having a positive and lasting impact on people's lives. The programme content provides you with the knowledge and skills required to develop and implement solutions to problems affecting the lives of children and adults in a globalised world. whereupon you must take into account and respond to the needs, perspectives, cultures and circumstances of others.

The course content, range of assessments as well as experiences, such as work-placement and workplace-related projects offered within the Education Studies and Social Policy (*flexible) programme provide key academic and employment/self-employment preparation for graduates who wish to work in a wide range of settings/organisations related to education and/or social policy. The design and flexibility of this degree means that you will not be restricted by the subject studied and many graduates will develop successful careers in a range of areas including education, social policy, Human Resource Management and Marketing.

Our graduates also undertake postgraduate training including Master's and PhD study at Cardiff Met. 

Progression to PGCE Teacher Training:
We are pleased to guarantee entry to the interview process for the PGCE Primary Course at Cardiff Met for all graduates of this programme (subject to the course being open with UCAS). An Honours degree minimum classification of a 2:2 is currently required, and the statutory entry requirements (including B grades or equivalent at GCSE for English and Maths, C grade for Science) must also be met.

Entry Requirements & How to Apply

Applicants should have 104 points from at least 2 A Levels (or equivalent). Typical offers may include: 


  • 104 points from at least 2 A levels to include an A level grade C. Welsh Baccalaureate – Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate will be considered as a third subject​​ 
  • RQF BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma/Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma with an overall grade of MMM 
  • CACHE Diploma with a grade C (minimum 96 points) 
  • 104 points from the Irish Leaving Certificate at Highers to include 2 x H2 grades (minimum grade considered at Higher is H4) 
  • 104 points from Scottish Advanced Highers to include a grade D. Scottish Highers are also considered, either on their own or in combination. 
  • 102 points from the Access to Higher Education Diploma 


If you are studying combinations of the above, or if your qualification isn't listed, please either contact Admissions or refer to the UCAS Course Search for entry requirements. Further information on our entry requirements, including qualifications from the EU can be found by clicking here.

If you are a mature applicant and have alternative qualifications or experience that you would like us to consider, please contact a member of staff.

A DBS check is not compulsory for this programme unless you undertake a placement involving work with children or vulnerable adults, in which case you will require one. More detail on the DBS procedure can be found at

International Applicants

Students whose first language is not English will need to provide evidence of fluency to at least an IELTS 6.0 standard or equivalent. For full details about how to apply and English Language qualifications please visit the International pages on the website.

Selection Procedure:
Selection is usually on the basis of a completed UCAS application and where relevant an interview.

How to Apply:
Applications for this course should be made online to UCAS at For further information please visit our How to Apply pages at

Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer into year 2 & 3

If you are interested in transferring credit from another institution to study at Cardiff met for a course which accepts entry for year 2 and/or 3, you can find further information on this and information on how to apply on the RPL page. Please contact Admissions for any queries that you have on RPL.

Mature students

A mature applicant is anyone over the ago of 21 who didn't go to university after school or college. Cardiff Met welcomes applications from mature applicants and further advice and information can be found here.

Contact Us

For general enquiries please contact the Admissions Team on 029 2041 6044 or email or tweet @CMetAdmissions

For course specific enquiries, please contact Programme Director Siân Sarwar: 
Tel: 029 2020 5599

Key Course Information

UCAS Code: X3L4

Place of Study: 
Cyncoed Campus

Cardiff School of Education & Social Policy

Course Length:
Three years full-time.


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