ED1FLS-Learning Spaces

Module Provider: Institute of Education
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Hilary Harris
Email: hilary.harris@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

A module that explores the physical, emotional and temporal characteristics of a high quality learning environment that practitioners create for children in early years/educational settings (0-11). Starting from the child, different theoretical and legislative perspectives are taken to evaluate how effective the environment is in enabling children’s learning and development.


The aims of this module are to develop knowledge and understanding of the child’s environment through:

Exploration of the characteristics of an effective environment and how environments influence development and learning

 Identification of statutory and non-statutory health and safety requirements in early years and education settings (0-11 years) and discussion of how risk and challenge is managed effectively

  • Evaluation of theories and pioneers in this field, with links to current practice

  • Reflection upon the role of the practitioner in maintaining an environment that promotes development and learning

  • Development of strategies of effective communication and engagement with children, young people and families that promotes an inclusive and emotionally literate environment

Assessable learning outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • identify principles and concepts in relation to the characteristics of an effective learning environment

  • discuss underlying theoretical perspectives and the impact of pioneers in the field, on the creation of an effective learning environment

  • evaluate current practice, making recommendations for further improvements to the learning environment that is informed b y primary and secondary research

  • reflect on the role of the practitioner in providing an effective learning environment that meets the needs of children in the workplace context

  • develop and apply knowledge required for practitioners which are linked to government policy, legislation, statutory and non-statutory guidance and current initiatives

  • recognise and incorporate connections between module, practice and relevant areas of the appropriate curri culum/framework

Additional outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students should also be able to:

  • demonstrate creative work based practice, including use of technology

  • assess own effectiveness in working with children, young people, other adults and parents/carers

  • Use appropriate data collection methods to collect empirical evidence

  • develop academic skills of producing an academic poster

  • consider the ethical issues of researching with children

  • compare own evaluations with international perspectives on effective learning environments

Outline content:

  • Physical, emotional and temporal characteristics of the learning environment

  • Management of children’s health and well-being in a setting – the debate on risk

  • The importance of anti-discriminatory practice in creating an inclusive environment

  • The role of the professional and evaluation of own practice in providing enabling environments

  • The value of outdoor learning

  • International perspective s on effective environments for development and learning

  • The use of ICT to support effective practice

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Lectures, discussion groups, tasks, research, work based activities; work – based learning will provide an essential contribution to achievement of the outcomes.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 19.5
Seminars 1.5
Tutorials 2
External visits 6
Work-based learning 60
Guided independent study: 111
Total hours by term 201
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Oral assessment and presentation 90
Practical skills assessment 10

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:
Poster presentation plus rationale of 1000 words (90%)
Mentor/student professional discussion (10%)

Formative assessment methods:
Work-based discussions with the mentor, plus tutorials and placement experience all contribute to formative assessment.

Penalties for late submission:

The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
Overall 40%

Reassessment arrangements:
The presentation can be reassessed by alternative assessment during the summer resit period. The work based assessment can be resubmitted during the summer resit period.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

1) Required text books:  The essential text books for this module are below. These texts are available in the library or within online resources or you may be able to source them more cheaply than the publisher’s recommended price


Blandford, S., &Knowles, C. (2009). Developing professional practice 0-7. Harlow: Pearson Education. Approx £29


Wilson, V., &Kendall-Seatter, S. (2010). Developing professional practice 7-14. Harlow: Pearson Education Approx £29

2) Specialist equipment or materials:  None

3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:  None

4) Printing and binding:  The poster presentation will require students to use materials (or print a digital image). This should not cost more than a maximum of £5.

5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:  None

6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:  None

Last updated: 30 July 2021


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