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Youth Work and Communities - BA (Hons)

The Youth Work and Communities degree at BCU is a contemporary and exciting course, which has accreditation from the Joint Negotiating Committee, which is the Professional body that accredits Youth Workers in England and Wales....

Studying with us in 2021/22 and 2022/23

The University has put in place measures in response to Covid-19 to allow us to safely deliver our courses.  Information about the arrangements for the 2021/22 academic year can be found here.  

 

Should the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continue in the 2022/23 academic year or subsequent years of your course, any additional and/or alternative arrangements put in place by the University in response will be in accordance with the latest government public health advice, pandemic-related/health and safety legislation, and the terms and conditions of the student contract.

  • Level Undergraduate
  • Study mode Full Time/Part Time
  • Location City Centre
  • School School of Social Sciences
  • Faculty Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences

Overview

The Youth Work and Communities degree at BCU is a contemporary and exciting course, which has accreditation from the Joint Negotiating Committee, which is the Professional body that accredits Youth Workers in England and Wales.

The course has been designed with key stakeholders, including the National Youth Agency, UK Youth, youth work managers, practitioners and young people themselves, to integrate the core knowledge and skills required to jump-start a successful career, working with young people and communities, whether that be in the public sector, non-governmental organisations/voluntary field or private sector.

Practice skills, cultural competencies, communication, placement and community engagement opportunities, have been built-in throughout the programme, to ensure students incrementally develop the essential and specialist skills and expertise to build thriving careers, working with diverse young people and communities.

The Youth Work and Communities BA degree at BCU offers:

  • A JNC recognised qualification to work in Youth Work, which is also valued and recognised in many other ‘people work’ contexts and sectors, in the UK and across the globe
  • A core focus on diversity, equality and social difference. We offer opportunities to learn and work on placement in Britain’s second biggest city, with highly diverse young people and communities, in a vibrant urban context of rapid social change. This experience is supported with diversity-oriented learning on core modules
  • A core leadership and enterprise strand, which runs throughout the programme, to develop skills to fast-track your career through strategic, project management and youth work organisational skills
  • A global focus and commitment throughout modules, and in two dedicated modules, situated in level 5 and level 6, which prepare students for careers that could lead to employment anywhere in the world. We integrate global issues in youth and community across your studies, such as refugee and migrant support, cross-cultural working, working in situations of conflict and anti-modern slavery/anti-trafficking practice
  • Opportunities at level 5 and 6 to select optional modules including: mental health and counselling approaches, black political activism, youth, crime and justice
  • Excellent placements throughout the three years to provide experiential learning and opportunities to build professional networks and your own field of interest in youth and community
  • Research skills training specifically focused upon working with diverse communities and young people
  • Coverage of innovative and creative digital skills and practice for youth and community work
This course is open to International students.

Why Choose Us?

  • On all of our courses you will gain a professional focus and real world experience on youth and community perspectives, ensuring you are equipped to make an immediate impact in your career. You have the opportunity to embark on micro placements with public sector and not for profit organisations.
  • All our courses have an international focus. This is embedded throughout the curriculum, giving you the opportunity to transform your experience with us into a global one. There are a variety of exciting possibilities open to you, including our many overseas study exchange programmes.
  • As a student on one of our undergraduate degrees, you will be able to benefit from our Graduate+ initiative. This three-year award course enables you to gain award levels for all the extra-curricular activities you undertake so that you can stand out from the crowd on graduation.
  • You will have opportunities to engage with our Birmingham 2029 project which seeks to map the city across a decade of change and be part of the Social Impact Hub which will enable you to engage with local organisations in the community and voluntary sectors.
  • The School of Social Sciences is recognised for being at the forefront of applied research, specialising in areas such as social identities, race and racism, hate crime, gender and violence and mental health. We have proud to have a vibrant research culture with five interdisciplinary research centres and a strong record of publications.
  • Gain an understanding of the contemporary world by practising a form of inquiry that is informed, knowledge-applied, evidence-based and interdisciplinary.
  • You will study in our state-of-the-art City Centre Campus, ideally located for you to take advantage of our links to industry in the UK’s second city.

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

Essential Requirements

BBC or 112 UCAS tariff points from a maximum of 3 subjects.

Applicants should have appropriate and sufficient experience of youth and community work before starting the programme. It is recommended that applicants have completed a minimum of 100 hours’ practical work with young people and/or communities prior to commencement on a programme.

Applicants will also have to pass an interview and an enhanced DBS check before they are able to enrol on the course.

Level 2 Qualifications
UK Qualification Requirements 2022/23
GCSE
  • GCSE English language at grade C/4 or above

  • Equivalent level 2 qualifications can be accepted

  • Must have been achieved at the point of enrolment

Irish Leaving Certificate (Ordinary Level)
  • See level 3 entry under Irish Leaving Certificate for full details.
Scottish National 5
  • English language at grade C or above

  • Must have been achieved at the point of enrolment

Plus one of the following Level 3 (and above) Qualifications
UK Qualification Requirements 2022/23
A level and Advanced VCE
  • BBC / 112 UCAS points

  • A maximum of 3 subjects are considered excluding General Studies. These can be other A-levels or level 3 equivalents.

Access to HE Diploma
  • Social Sciences or Humanities pathway

  • Pass with 60 credits overall. At least 45 credits at level 3. 18 of the level 3 credits must be achieved at either merit or distinction grade.

  • Pearson BTEC National Extended Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2002 – 2010)
  • DMM

  • Most subjects considered, however Early Years and Children's Play Learning and Development are not considered.

  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 – 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Certificate
    (2002 – 2010)
  • 112 UCAS points.

  • Most subjects considered, however Early Years and Children's Play Learning and Development are not considered.

  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification

  • Pearson BTEC National Foundation Diploma (2016 to present)
  • Pearson BTEC 90-Credit Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • Most subjects considered, however Early Years and Children's Play Learning and Development are not considered.

  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification

  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Award
    (2002 - 2010)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • Most subjects considered, however Early Years and Children's Play Learning and Development are not considered.

  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

IBO Certificate in Higher Level

  • Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates if they obtain a total of 14 points or above from three Higher Level Subjects

  • Considered with other acceptable level 3 qualifications to meet 112 UCAS Tariff Points

  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

  • Obtain a minimum of 28 points overall

  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Highers)

  • Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 112 tariff points, achieved in four Higher level subjects. This must include English Language taken at either Ordinary level (minimum grade O1-O4 (or A-C/A1-C3)) or Higher level (minimum grade H5/D1)

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Applied General Certificate in Health and Social Care

  • 112 UCAS points.
  • Can be considered along with A-levels or a combination of equivalent level 3 qualifications

OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma

  • DMM

OCR Cambridge Technical Diploma

  • 112 UCAS points

  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification

  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma
    (until 2016)
  • 112 UCAS points

  • Considered with two A-level or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Scottish Advanced Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 112 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.

  • Where three Advanced Highers have been taken achieve a minimum of grades CCD.

  • Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of CD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of CC in two Highers).

Scottish Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 112 tariff points achieved in either five Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.

  • Where only Highers have been taken a minimum of grades BBCCC is required. Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve grades of CD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of CC in two Highers.

T-Levels

  • 112 UCAS points (Merit overall)

Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate - Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015)

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma – Core (awarded until 2016)

ESW/KS Combined component

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

WJEC Level 3 Diploma in Criminology (QCF)

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
Other Qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
Additional information for EU/International students
Essential

Applications from international applicants with equivalent qualifications to 112 points are welcome. Please see your country page for further details on the equivalent qualifications we accept.

In additional to the academic entry requirements listed above, international and EU students will also require the qualifications detailed in this table.

English language requirements 2020/21
IELTS

6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands

If you do not meet the required IELTS score, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English courses. Please note that you must have a Secure English Language Test (SELT) to study on the pre-sessional English course. More information.

Other accepted qualifications Visit our English language page

Fees & How to Apply

  • International students

Award: BA (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2022

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

Award: BA (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2022

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 3 Years
  • £13,500 per year

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form and equal opportunities PDF form instead.

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites and available through our library.

Free access to Rosetta Stone

All students can sign up to the online learning language platform for free through the Graduate+ scheme.

Placements

We will cover the cost of any Enhanced DBS related to placements, and offer a small bursary towards placement costs.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

Some modules may suggest that you purchase a key textbook. All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. Many students choose to purchase a copy.

Placement expenses (optional)

If you choose to undertake a placement, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst living or working away from home.

Field trips (optional)

This course includes the option of additional trips that may enhance your experience.

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Guidance for UK students

UK students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS

 Register with UCAS

 Login to UCAS

 Complete your details

 Select your course

 Write a personal statement

 Get a reference

 Pay your application fee

 Send UCAS your application

International students

There are three ways to apply:

1) Direct to the University

You will need to complete our International Application Form and Equal Opportunities Form, and submit them together with scan copies of your original academic transcripts and certificates.

2) Through a country representative

Our in-country representatives can help you make your application and apply for a visa. They can also offer advice on travel, living in the UK and studying abroad.

3) Through UCAS

If you are applying for an undergraduate degree or a Higher National Diploma (HND), you can apply through the UK’s Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

You can request a printed form from your school or nearest British Council office. You will be charged for applying through UCAS. Birmingham City University’s UCAS code is B25 BCITY.

Personal statement

UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*

The personal statement gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

  • Course choice - Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?
  • Career plans - If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.
  • Work experience - Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.
  • School or college experience - Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.
  • Non-accredited skills or achievement - eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.

Fees for part time students

If you study this course part-time or via distance learning, you will be charged on a pro-rata basis. This means your fee will be calculated per module.

Course in Depth

Year One

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Introduction to Youth and Community Work 20 credits

Working with Individuals, Groups and Communities 20 credits

Social Policy: Inequalities and Inclusion 20 credits

Equality, Diversity, Values and Social Justice 20 credits

Placement: Foundations in Practice 20 credits

Identities, Self and Intersectionality 20 credits

Year Two

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits).

Researching with Youth and Communities 20 credits

Global Youth and Community Development 20 credits

Placement: Reflexive Practice 40 credits

Leadership, Management and Enterprise Skills in Youth and Community Contexts 20 credits

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

Social Pedagogy with Youth and Communities 20 credits

Mental Health, Wellbeing and Counselling 20 credits

Youth, Crime and Justice 20 credits

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Final Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits).

Placement: Critical Operational Reflexive Practice 40 credits

Multi and Intra-professional Working Project 20 credits

Leadership, Networking and Partnership Building in Youth and Community 20 credits

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 40 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

Violence, Conflict and Mediation 20 credits

Rehabilitation, Reintegration and Therapeutic Communities 20 credits

Black Arts Movement 20 credits

Counselling and Wellbeing Support Skills for Youth and Community 20 credits

Decolonising Youth and Community Work 20 credits

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Testimonials

"The youth and community degree provides an opportunity for students to engage in a bold and thoughtful new subject of study at BCU. The course will meaningfully engage with contemporary issues that require responses from across the voluntary and public sectors.

Students will not only be provided with learning opportunities on the social, cultural, political and economic factors that impact youth and community work, they will also learn about employment pathways upon completion of the degree. BCU’s strong partnerships with local employers will provide work placement opportunities to enhance students’ learning and employability.

Combining theory and practice, this degree is an essential offer to young people who wish to develop and enhance their knowledge and skills to include critical, analytical and reflective thinking within a youth and community work setting."

Halima Nessa, Head of National Programmes, UK Youth

"This course is an excellent opportunity for an individual to gain both theoretical and practical experience to prepare them for a career in youth work. It balances knowledge with real life experience to support people for a real world role, ensuring that students engage with different types of working and learning as a practice for the working world.

Students will be able to specialise in subject areas that resonate with them, and I am particularly excited about the discussions on themes surrounding diversity and inclusion for students that want to work in those areas.

The course situates itself well in the wider context of the University’s aim to become embedded in its local landscape, helping to support the people of Birmingham."

Sharan Dhanda – BeatFreeks

Employability

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

International Students

Welcome to the School of Social Sciences, home to students from all around the world!

All of our undergraduate and postgraduate social sciences courses are open to international students, and our courses have been tailored to take a global approach to learning. We frequently welcome international students through the Erasmus scheme, from countries including Germany, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Facilities and Staff

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £340 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course is based at our City Centre Campus – and specifically The Curzon Building, alongside other social sciences, law, business and English students.

The £63m building offers students a unique social learning space, including a dedicated student hub incorporating student support services, in the heart of Birmingham’s Eastside development.

Realistic, simulated environments include two mock court rooms, a Magistrates' and Crown Court, and an interviewing suite. We’re also exploring the use of virtual environments as a way to develop case study analysis.

For those studying on the BA (Hons) Policing or BA (Hons) Criminology, Policing and Investigation degrees, you’ll experience simulations of police interviewing environments for both suspects and witnesses, with access to tape recording and video playback analysis.

Crime investigation files are prepared using computer-based technology, and the crime data analysis requirements of the degree are supported by appropriate statistical and analytical software.

Psychology students can look forward to using state-of-the-art equipment as well, including the latest in eye-tracking software, and our new EEG machine, all geared towards giving you true hands-on experience with tools you’ll be using in your later career. You will also benefit from facilities across the wider campus including the Parkside and Millennium Point buildings.

The Curzon Building also features:

  • An impressive new library with access to over 65 million full text items and stunning views of Eastside City Park
  • Your Students’ Union which is located in a beautifully restored 19th century pub, The Eagle and Ball
  • A modern 300-seat food court with space to study and socialise
  • Brand new, accessible IT facilities with full Office365 for all students for free

Our staff

Dr Sarah Pemberton

Associate Professor in Criminology, Acting Head of Department for Criminology and Sociology

Having initially studied Social Policy as an undergraduate Sarah became immersed in the study of the social world, this served as the foundation for an unrelenting interest in social research which she pursues to this day. 

Full Profile

More about Sarah