Course Outline:

The overall aim of the programme is to provide the learner with the opportunity to acquire the knowledge, skill and competence to work as an autonomous practitioner such as Manager of an Early Years Setting, Special Needs Assistant, Care Assistant, Nanny or to operate a Child-minding business. This is the minimum qualification to be a Room Leader. Successful students will be awarded a QQI Level 6 Certificate in Early Childhood Care & Education. Extra courses/workshops may be provided such as Occupational First Aid (OFA 5N1207), Child Protection Guidelines, Drama and Creative Studies and RSA Workshop in Road Safety.

Course Outline

  • Advanced Professional Practice Placement in Early Learning and Care
  • Sociology and Social Policy in Early Learning and Care
  • The Developing Child
  • Curriculum and Pedagogy
  • Inclusive Early Learning and Care
  • Supervision and Administration in Early Learning.

Course Duration:

This is a one year, full time course, running from September to May.

Entry Requirements:

  • Leaving Certificate/LCVP or Leaving Cert Applied
  • A FETAC/QQI Level 4 qualification
  • Mature students (age 23+) welcome
  • Interview
  • Garda vetting to be completed, including police clearance where appropriate

Student Testimonial:

Carmel O’Mahony

I completed the QQI Level 6 (advanced) in Early Childhood Education and Care. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my experience and will reflect on it fondly. I was initially daunted at the prospect of returning to education as a mature student but need not have worried. The teachers are wonderfully welcoming and supportive. The course content is both interesting and challenging. The course structure allowed me to combine my studies with family life. The confidence I gained from taking this course is immeasurable and as a result I feel prepared academically to progress onto the BA in Early Childhood Education in GMIT. I would highly recommend studying at CCFE.


Kathleen Niland

Having decided to return to CCFE for the second year and study ECCE Level 6. This course provided me with the knowledge, skill ad competence to work as a Manager of an Early Years setting. The course timetable really worked with my busy home life schedule as a mother. It was a very challenging year and involved a lot of hard work and commitment, but it was a very worthwhile year. CCFE staff were always available to help. They were very encouraging and supportive. I would recommend this course to anyone who is interested in pursuing a career as a Manager of an Early Years setting, working as a Special needs assistant, or operating a childminding business.


Once you have applied online you will be called for an interview within a few weeks. QQI examination fees cost €50, although Medical Card holders are exempt from paying this fee on production of a valid medical card. Books and essential class materials may also be required. A €200 Government levy will apply on acceptance of a place on PLC course, but medical card holders and those in receipt of a maintenance grant will be exempt. A Student Service fee of €100 also applies.

Detailed Course Outline


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