After leaving school and during sixth form I was unsure of the career path I wanted to take so decided on a year-long placement in a nursery which helped me realise I wanted to work with children in some way.
I have always lived in Brighton and wanted to stay local, the University of Brighton really stood out on their open days and applicant days. It just felt right. The people I spoke to were so kind and friendly, there was a lot of support on offer.
This course is based in Falmer where there is a huge library, multiple food places and a mix of huge lecture theatres and small classrooms. The library and open learning centre (specifically designed for education students) are filled with plenty of resource and book you may need during your studies.
I have gained so much knowledge and enjoy the freedom I have in my studies. I can choose my own research topics and have autonomy over my learning. At times, it has been stressful but there is so much support from lecturers and the university who genuinely want you to succeed.
The lecturers on my course all bring a variety of experience in the field of Early Childhood and take the time to answer any questions we have and adapt the sessions to suit us.
My placement and observational study visits have given me a lot of experience in different settings, including a reception class, a nursery and a baby room. They have all been useful in putting the theory I have learnt into practice. Through these placements, I have been able to realise the types of settings I may want to work in once I graduate.
I am hoping to continue my studies after graduating from this route to study either a PGCE course or Early Years Education PGCert with Early Years Teacher Status.
My advice to potential applicants would be to take some time to gain a bit of experience. This can be really helpful in both your application and your studies. I have found that my experience in a nursery allowed me to relate my learning to an example I saw during my volunteering experience.