Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood)


The first seven years are of vital importance to a child’s life. The rapid rate of development in children of this age and their natural desire to learn makes for a hugely rewarding environment in which to work.

The Bachelor of Teaching and Learning(EarlyChildhood) is an internationally recognised qualification that prepares you for a teaching career in different early childhood settings. The BTchLn (EarlyChildhood) is available to study full-time or part-time:
  • on campus in Christchurch
  • in New Plymouth by a mix of face-to-face and distance study
  • by distance through the Flexible Learning Option (FLO)

If you hold a Diploma in Teaching (Early Childhood) and wish to upgrade to a degree please see Upgrade to a bachelor's degree on the College of Education website.

Features of the BTchLn(EarlyChildhood) at UC

  • A UC teaching qualification is recognised nationally and internationally as being of high quality
  • Study by distance anywhere in New Zealand through the Flexible Learning Option
  • Learn on campus in Christchurch and New Plymouth
  • Available as part-time study over up to six years
  • International study opportunities, for example Rarotonga, Samoa and China
  • Students get to know their lecturers and classmates well, and vice versa
  • Scholarships may be available, including $10,000 TeachNZ Scholarships (see the TeachNZ website).

Entry requirements

Bachelor's degrees require University Entrance to gain admission to UC. If you gained your qualifications overseas, these will need to be assessed to ensure they are of an equivalent standard.

The BTchLn (EarlyChildhood) has one intake each February. For full entry requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood) or use the admission requirements checker.

You are also required to meet UC’s English language requirements.

Qualification specific requirements

Selection for entry is based on your academic ability, involvement and interest in working with children, community involvement, communication skills and other personal qualities.

The selection process also includes a police check, referees reports and an interview.

You are also required to complete a short literacy and numeracy test.

Qualification structure and duration

Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood) requires 360 points:

  • 105 points from Education courses
  • 90 points from Professional Inquiry
  • 60 points from Professional Practice
  • 105 points from Curriculum Studies

Typical degree structure for Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood)

Year 1
Year 2
Year 3
    Education core courses
    Professional inquiry
    Professional practice
    Curriculum study

Each small block represents a 15-point course. However, some courses may be 30 points or more.

How to apply

Applications open in July and are due four weeks prior to the commencement of the programme or when places are filled.

For information on the application process visit UC Education.

Flexible Learning Option

If you would like to study by distance you must attend two onsite intensives, one of which is a two week onsite intensive at the beginning of the programme. This will be held in Christchurch unless you are enrolled in the regional programme in New Plymouth.

Courses integrate web-based material, audiovisual resources, video conferences and email. You will also attend professional practice placements in early childhood education centres for up to ten weeks per year.

Further study

Postgraduate qualifications

Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Teaching

If you already hold a university degree the Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Teaching is an alternative to the Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood).

Career opportunities

A UC degree in early childhood teaching means you will be able to join a skilled and collaborative teaching profession.

You can become a registered professional who can work in a range of early childhood settings including early learning centres, childcare centres (public and private), hospitals and government agencies.

Find out more about what you can do with a degree from UC.

More information

For the full degree requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood).

For more information email info@canterbury.ac.nz or freephone 0800 VARSITY (827 748).

For assistance with planning your programme of study contact the Liaison Office (new students) or visit the Liaison Office’s course planning page (new students), or a College of Education Student Advisor (advancing students).

Elizabeth kelly

Elizabeth Kelly

"You get to learn about things that you would never think had anything to do with teaching, but are really interesting and relevant."