Galway Community College
Further Education

Advanced Certificate in Early Learning and Care (ELC Stage 2 Level 6)

Advanced Certificate in Early Learning and Care (ELC Stage 2 Level 6)


Course Code: 6M21471

Program Co-ordinator: Mary Gallery


Course Outline

This is year 2 of the Advanced Certificate in Early Learning and Care (Level 6). Learners can progress to this course if they have achieved the Early Learning and Care Level 5 award (Year 1) or if they have gone through an RPL process.

This programme aims to meet the requirements of childcare supervisors and managers in relation to current childcare legislation and child protection legislation, as well as developing the core competencies required to work at managerial level.

For the first time, the Early Learning and Care sector workforce will have access to a suite of professional awards from entry level qualifications at Level 5 to honours degree level, that recognise the value of professionals at all these levels working in ELC settings across the country.


  • Advanced Professional Practice Placement in Early Learning and Care (25 credits)
  • Supervision and Administration in Early Learning and Care (25 Credits)
  • Sociology and Social Policy in Early Learning and Care (15 credits)
  • Inclusive Early Learning and Care (15 credits)
  • Curriculum and Pedagogy (20 credits)
  • The Developing Child (20 credits)

Professional Practice Placement (Work Experience)

As part of the programme learners must complete 150 hours of professional practice placement at both stage 1 and stage 2 (total 300 hours) in a minimum of two settings. One setting must involve working directly with children aged between 0 and 2 years 8 months and the other setting working with children aged between 2 years 8 months and 6 years

Work experience takes place one day per week throughout the academic year and two one-week block placements in January / March.

Students have a practical opportunity here to apply theory, knowledge and interpersonal skills in a variety of childcare and educational settings.

Entry Requirements

Suitable candidates must have successfully completed Stage One of this Award or hold a qualification acceptable for employment in Early Learning and Care (as per list provided by the DCEDIY). Recognition of Prior Learning is available for advanced entry. Please contact the course coordinator to discuss further.

English language - Minimum English language and literacy competence at entry to the programme for speakers of English as a second language is Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, B2 in writing, reading, listening and speaking.


€175 GCC Student Services Fee applies to all learners.

€80 for QQI Level 6 applies to all learners except

  • Those in receipt of Back to Education Allowance.
  • Medical Card Holders (valid at time of Registration).

Non EU Students are subject to an International Fee.

We advise non-EU citizens living outside Ireland to contact the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service on to ensure the course you are considering applying for is eligible for a student visa. Non-EU citizens living in Ireland are welcome to apply and require a PPS number (Personal Public Service Number). Non-EU citizens are required to pay a tuition fee set by the Irish government which is currently €3653. Some exemptions apply, for further information, please contact .

Special Features

Participants will acquire an understanding of early childhood education programmes and recent curriculum development in the Irish context.

The course is delivered by highly qualified and experienced team of teachers. The course provides excellent progression route to further education and subject to specific requirements the course can be used to apply through CAO for a third level degree in a related discipline


For information please visit our Progression Page under Student Supports

Opportunities open to students who did not achieve the desired Leaving Certificate to allow entry to your desired course from the CAO system, you can have the opportunity to achieve up to 390 points in a PLC course and gain access to 3rd Level or for mature students who did not complete a Leaving Certificate to gain access to 3rd Level.

Please Note

Galway Community College reserves the right to make changes to any course, to limit the number of places available or to withdraw a course. No part of this information shall be deemed to form a contract between the college and a student or a third party.

Feb 06
Bank Holiday - College Closed
Feb 13
Mid Term Break
Mar 17
College Closed
Apr 03
Easter Holidays
Wellpark Rd, Galway
 091 755464
© 2023 Galway Community College Further Education