BA (Hons) / FdA

Accredited by the University of Birmingham


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3 years full-time




Multiple placements


September (2021)


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Social Care
Choose Award

2 years full-time




Opportunities available


September (2021)


View Fees

Social Care
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Do you want to play a vital role in supporting the next generation? Working with young people and their families covers a huge range of areas from education and health to social welfare and community development, and our Youth, Community and Families degree course will help you make a real difference in whichever sector you aspire to work.

Learning from expert lecturers and tailoring your qualification to your chosen area of the industry, you will be able to explore specialist areas ranging from sexual health, homelessness, substance misuse and rehabilitation to community arts, sports projects and the criminal justice system. You will work with a range of service providers and examine current events within the industry affecting how society works with young people and their families, as well as hearing from a wide range of guest speakers.

Your learning is not limited to the classroom either. Our Youth, Community and Families course gives you the opportunity to undertake a work placement within the industry, boosting your experience and demonstrating your abilities to potential employers before you graduate, as well as further developing your interpersonal skills and expanding your network.

Need some advice? Our Course Enquiries team are available on live chat for you to ask any questions you have about university. Find out more here.

Why should I choose this course?

  • WORK PLACEMENT – Put your learning into practice and broaden your experience on a work placement in a variety of settings within the industry
  • ENRICHMENT – Gain valuable insight from a multitude of guest speakers – recent examples have included representatives from the BBC, Cherished UK and The Give Back Project
  • SPECIALISE YOUR STUDIES – Develop a specialism in line with your career ambitions through a wide choice of optional modules and a final research project

Our facilities

Our learning spaces at University College Birmingham ensure you have the right environments to build your knowledge, from lecture theatres to interactive group working spaces and extensive library resources.

Course breakdown

Students on the FdA have the option of progressing onto the final year upon completion of the foundation degree.

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Year 3

Core Modules

Academic Skills (SEHC)

Your vital skills and abilities will be developed to enable you to study effectively at an undergraduate level. Key learning concepts will be identified and related to skills relevant to the industry, which will then be developed through a variety of tasks and activities. This is done in a relevant context that takes into account the wider education and community focus of your course as a whole.

Democratic and Inclusive Practice

In this module you will explore how you impact on the learning and development of others in the context of informal education by looking at how your actions and behaviours influence others. You will learn about how to educate through conversation, critical dialogue, experiential learning, group work and creative activities. Taking part in group discussions and activities will help you to develop your skills so as to foster democratic and inclusive practice.

Developing Community-Based Organisations

You will develops understanding of the organisations in which youth, community and family workers are employed, and the distinctive cultures that this sector has. You will learn about the management and leadership of teams and individuals in community-based projects including inter-professional and interdisciplinary working, and learn about how staff can be properly supported. This module will also develop your understanding of anti-discriminatory practice at organisational level. This module will also help you to develop initiatives, projects and programmes using appropriate professional frameworks and methods.

Policies and Practice

In this module you will be introduced to the concepts of social justice, ideology and the development of social policy and explore them in relation to the development of youth, community and family services. The nature of interdisciplinary and collaborative working in the current social policy climate are explored as well as the current policy drivers in contemporary practice, such as in health, education, social care and crime. You will develop skills in networking and multi-agency working with other professionals, community groups and young people's projects.

Professional Practice in Work with Youth, Community and Families

You will learn how to become self-aware in order to support an understanding of how personal value systems, attitudes, skills and qualities impact upon the management role of the professional within the sector. Developing an understanding of interpersonal skills and effective communication will prepare you for future work placements and employment opportunities.

Understanding Self and Others in Practice

This module invites students to explore how they impact on the learning and development of others in the context of informal education, through a combination of practice knowledge and practical placement/work based experience within a practice setting. Students are encouraged to develop reflective skills in order to recognise how their values, actions and behaviours influence their practice.

Core Modules

Ethics in Practice

You will be looking at how to enhance ethical practice in the workplace. You will consider your personal ethical decision making, and consider how you are accountable to other professionals and service users. You will also learn about how law and policy ensures the safety and support of Youth, Community and Family practitioners and the people they work with.

Interpersonal Skills for Managing Practice

Awareness of self and others is vital to the aims and objectives of this module, and it explores the individual processes and the analysis of effective management functions within the workplace environment. Understanding your own communication skills, and how to encourage these developments in other people, is crucial.

Research For Enquiry

You will be developing your expertise in the evaluation and use of essential research tools through class activities and scenarios. You will be encouraged to challenge research through your own analysis and establish your own research objectives and tools in order to collect and evaluate information and data.

Working with Communities

You will explore the history and theory of community based practice, which is education outside the formal learning and assessment process. You will learn how to work with people in communities to create change that is based on a commitment to social justice.

Choose 1 optional module

Community Health

The module encompasses the premise that health and wellbeing, in its widest sense, is paramount for a fulfilling life. You will explore the complexity of physiological, psychological, and social health needs of young people, families, and communities, and the social and economic factors influencing their health status. You will also analyse health promotion theory and current campaigns in order to identify effective practice. By the end of the module you will have an understanding of the health promotion process, and the ethical and philosophical considerations, in order to apply this in practice to support health needs of young people, families, and communities, in a variety of settings.

Counselling and Guidance Skills for Practice

Whether you are interested in the provision of informal advice and guidance or specifically focusing on supporting individuals to address emotional issues, the development of counselling skills when working with children, young people and vulnerable adults is vital. This module will offer you a fundamental understanding of counselling approaches and methods, alongside knowledge of the practical skills necessary to successfully support individuals in a counselling capacity.

Criminology and Criminal Justice

This module will provide you with an introduction to the social sciences in relation to criminology and criminal justice. This includes historical developments within the area and an exploration of different theories and perspectives. You will also be studying values and ethics and the structural impact of criminal justice practice.

Mentoring for Learning

In order to support the practice of mentoring, you will build on your knowledge, skills and attitudes as well as participating in practical activities in order to enable you to explore ideas within mentoring and develop your understanding of it as a learning resource.

Substance Misuse

You will develop a realistic awareness and understanding of the use and misuse of all illegal and legal drugs, the numerous treatment options, the social context of recreational and problematic drug use and related theory and policy.

Choose 1 optional module

Working with Families

You will explore the sociological, psychological and cultural aspects of the concept of 'family' as well as researching the types of dynamics within a family unit. Professional intervention in family-related work will also be examined and explored through placement or work based practice.

Young People in Transition

You will explore the sociological, psychological and cultural aspects of the concept of 'young people' including the transitions they may face as they move towards adulthood. Professional intervention in work with young people will also be examined and explored through placement or work based practice.

Core Modules

Enhancing Professional Practice in Work with Youth, Community and Families

Developing and recognising graduate attributes will enable you to set yourself apart from the crowd, presenting to future employers the skills necessary to undertake your professional role in a competitive employment arena. The vocational practice you experience on this module will enhance your professional development by advancing your theoretical knowledge, increasing your professional skill set skills and enriching your personal and professional confidence.

Leadership and Management in Community-Based Organisations

Studying on this module you will develop your skills and understanding of leadership and management in community settings. Each week you will undertake a task which will culminate in you to creating a funding application for a project proposal. These tasks will develop your skills, so that you become a more effective practitioner, better equipped to lead and manage in the current professional field.

Choose 1 optional module

Alternative Practice

This placement module involves 75 hours of practice and ensures that students will: -experience different organisational structures and arrangements; -follow a programme of work which is new and challenging Reflective and sharing practice is at the heart of this module.

Youth and Community Development

You will learn about the nature and theory of community, as well as the causes of conflict within communities and how these may be resolved. You will find out about how Youth and Community Development work evolved historically through social justice movements, as well as looking at how policy is taking shape today.

Choose 1 optional module

Professional Engagement

You will have the opportunity to deepen your knowledge within a chosen area of the course and the related industry. Using your creativity, problem-solving abilities and data analysis techniques, you will communicate the application, management of research and appraisal of your chosen area under the supervision of an experienced tutor.

Research Project (SEHC)

You will develop your independent learning, problem solving and analytical skills by choosing a particular area of the course and related industry to study in greater depth. You will be encouraged to integrate concepts and knowledge from previous modules and draw on wide range of academic and industrial resources, supported by a lecturer within personal tutorials.

The modules listed above for this course are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up to date and informed by industry as well as the latest teaching methods. On occasion, we may need to make unexpected changes to modules – if this occurs, we will contact all offer holders as soon as possible.

Entry requirements

Youth, Community and Families BA (Hons)

Tariff: A minimum of 96-80 UCAS Tariff points from at least two A-levels or equivalent BTEC qualifications.

GCSEs: GCSE /IGCSE English grade A*-C (grade 9-4) or equivalent.

You must also complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. University College Birmingham will co-ordinate and fund the completion of the DBS check.

Youth, Community and Families FdA

Tariff: A minimum of 56-32 UCAS Tariff points from at least one A-level or equivalent BTEC qualifications.

Non-tariff: Non-UCAS Tariff-based Level 3 qualifications are also considered for entry.

Work-based: We also give equal consideration to applicants who are currently in work and wish to apply to University College Birmingham. To apply, you must have a minimum of 3 years’ relevant work experience, demonstrating management or supervisory duties. Your application must also include a reference from your line manager supporting your entry to higher education. For further details, please contact Admissions.

GCSEs: GCSE /IGCSE English grade A*-C (grade 9-4) or equivalent.

You must also complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

EU/International students

For entry requirements for EU and international students, please visit the Country Specific Information page.

Key information

Teaching and assessment


In light of COVID-19, we have made some changes to the way we deliver our teaching. We are continually following the guidelines and measures put in place by the UK Government to ensure our students and staff are safe on campus, whilst remaining committed to providing high-quality education. The information below explains how teaching will take place in semester 2 (or semester 1 for those joining us in January) for each level/year of this course.


Estimated breakdown of assessment for this degree course:

  • Coursework – 75%
  • Practical assessment – 25%

Our teaching and assessment is underpinned by our Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy 2015-2020.


As a new student studying this degree full-time, you will receive £300 per year via our Kick-Start Scheme (eligibility criteria applies). This scheme will support your studies and future career by contributing to course-related materials, uniform or selected items on campus. You might even qualify for an additional £500 per year.

Tuition fees

UK/EU students

If you are a UK/EU student enrolling on a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £9,250 per each full year. A half year tuition fee is £4,625. UK/EU students do not pay tuition fees for any placement periods.

International students

If you are an international student enrolling on a a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £11,500 per year.

If you complete a placement year, there will be an administration fee of £500 for a full year, or £250 for a half-year placement.


of graduate employers say relevant experience is essential to getting a job with them

Work placements

Work placements are vital for gaining real-life experience and for building your confidence and skills before you finish your course – and they may even lead to a job when you graduate. Our hired@UCB team can help find the ideal placement for you.

As part of our FdA and BA Youth, Community and Families courses, you will begin a work placement in semester two of your first year and be encouraged to find voluntary roles during your second and third year. 

Our past students have worked in a variety of settings including youth and community centres, children’s centres and hostels, and providing mentoring and pastoral care in schools. They have also served local community projects supporting women, homeless people and asylum seekers.

Work alongside experts in your sector

A snapshot of some of the employers we have worked with:

  • Birmingham and Solihull Women's Aid
  • Kitts Green Family Support Team
  • Prince's Trust
  • The Salvation Army
  • YMCA Sutton Coldfield
  • Standing Ovation Project

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, please be aware that opportunities to travel abroad for placements, project work or residential trips may be affected by government travel restrictions. Please visit our updates and FAQs page for information.

I knew this was the right course for me because of the wide range of interesting modules. One of the highlights of the course was sharing the benefits with work colleagues. I love working within the community – no two days are the same. The constant challenges can be exciting, as well as motivational.

Maxine Mills Youth, Community and Families BA (Hons)

Career opportunities

The example roles and salaries below are intended as a guide only.

Youth worker

Average Salary: £31,820

Community development worker

Average Salary: £28,500

Advice worker

Average Salary: £28,000

Community support worker

Average Salary: £18,417

Family support worker

Average Salary: £21,000

Learning mentor

Average Salary: £22,500


We are here to support your career goals every step of the way. 


Find out more

Naomi’s Story

Since graduating, Naomi has been instrumental in reducing youth violence, raising educational aspirations and developing pioneering research.

Read Story

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