QQI Level 5 Childcare (ECCE Major Award 5M2009)

1,190.00 or 125.00 / month for 10 months

  • Our distance learning QQI level 5 Early Childhood Care & Education Major Award is designed to prepare you to work in a supervised role, competently, safely and effectively with children aged 0 – 6 years. The course is designed to emphasise the integrated nature of work with young children.
  • Sector Requirement: All childcare practitioners must have at minimum this Level 5 qualification in early childhood care and education, and team leaders are required to have a Level 6 qualification (or equivalent).
  • What QQI award do I receive? On successful completion of this 8 module course you will gain a QQI Level 5 Early Childhood Care & Education Major Award – 5M2009.
  • How is it delivered? Distance Learning with flexible part-time study from your own home.
  • Do you cover insurance? Yes, Student work placement Insurance is covered at no extra cost.
  • How long is this Childcare Course? Students are given ample time (13 months / 56 weeks) to complete the course and can start it at any time of the year.
  • What does it cost? The full course fee is €1,190 and includes all documentation, lecturing, assessments, learner registration and QQI certification fees for all the 8 modules. No other hidden accreditation or certification fees to pay!
  • There is also an Easy Payment option of – €125 per month over 10 months with our unrivaled Easy Payment Plans. Enrol using your Debit / Credit Card or call us on (+353) 1 206 1828 to avail of this offer.
  • Garda Vetting is also provided at no extra cost.


Choose your Payment Option:

Course Description


Our QQI Level 5 Childcare Major award programme is designed to prepare you to work in a supervised role, competently, safely and effectively with children aged 0 – 6 years. The course is designed to emphasise the integrated nature of work with young children. It will also prepare you to work in a wide range of settings with different professionals and volunteers, recognising and valuing the importance of all of them in providing a service for children and their families. This childcare programme is also structured to provide Graduates with the opportunity to progress to specialised courses in higher education.

In 2015, the then Minister for Children & Youth Affairs – Frances Fitzgerald TD, announced that from September 2016 all staff in existing childcare services must have a level 5 qualification in early childhood care and education, and team leaders will have to have a Level 6 qualification (or equivalent).

This programme leads to the QQI Level 5 major award 5M2009 Early Childhood Care and Education and upon successful completion and QQI certification provides learners with the minimum qualifications required to work in Childcare. Learners will need complete a total of 8 modules to achieve the Major award.

This distance learning, QQI accredited course means that Students can study flexibly at home, or at any convenient place and time, and can gain a nationally accredited Qualification. Students receive a comprehensive Course Manual, Assignments, Efficient Studyguide, and unlimited one-to-one Tutor Support for the course duration.

The course documentation for this course is detailed and easy to read. If students require extra time to complete the course they can apply for an extension. Assignments may be emailed or posted to the College whichever is more convenient.

The programme duration is a combination of directed and self-directed learning activity including work placements and the total number of learning hours per week should be 20 hours on average.


Some of the many benefits in studying with us on this Level 5 Childcare Major Award:

  • The ability to select a course that best suits your learning requirements and career goals.
  • Ireland’s Largest QQI accredited distance learning course provider. All our Awards are Fully Validated & Approved by QQI.
  • More choice, Innovative Learning approach, High Quality and unbeatable prices – Why Pay more for the same QQI Award!
  • All student fees for this Major Award are fully secure and protected by a Financial Bond.
  • Easy Payment Plan available on all our courses.
  • Work placement Insurance is covered by us and at no extra cost.
  • Group Discounts Available: Enrol 2+ people, for €1,000 per learner (a discount of over 5% per person on existing Special offer price).
  • We are an approved Garda Vetting Organisation.
  • Options to progress to Third Level University Early Childhood Care programmes under the Higher Education Links Scheme.
  • Over 11,000 students successfully certified in last number of years.


Course Details


Who should complete this course?

The programme will cater for a variety of adult learners ranging from school leavers with no previous experience in the ECCE sector to more mature adults with relevant life or work experience. Some of the latter will have previously had some education and training in childcare. More mature adults will frequently be seeking new career opportunities, be working in the home or currently working in the child care sector.


Requirement in Credit Value is 120

Students must complete 8 Modules at 15 Credits each.


Mandatory – All of the following components (90 Credits):


Choose Any Two of the following components (30 Credits):


*Students taking these modules will have to sit an online examination.

All participants must have access to a professional Childcare environment before the end of the 13 month programme and must be at least 150 hours work experience.


Entry Requirements / Prerequisites:

  • Leaving certificate, Level 4 certificate or equivalent in a relevant subject area (Healthcare/Childcare/Sports) and/or relevant practical experience (3 years minimum) – Please ask about our requirements surrounding Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for entry.

  • Mature students (over 23 years) may be exempt from the above prerequisites.

  • Learners will be required to undertake a practical supervised work placement (150 hours minimum) within the relevant Childcare area. Note: This can be completed near the end of the 13 month programme (Work Experience Module) and other module completion is not restricted.

  • It is recommended that learners complete a Manual Handling course in conjunction with this course although it is not a mandatory module this is something that employers may look for. Also please note that some Childcare providers may require proof of Covid 19 Vaccinations before work placements are accepted. 

  • English Language Requirement: Students entering programmes leading to awards at Level 5 are expected to be able to: be proficient at reading, drafting, preparing and understanding information across a broad range of topics, including quantitative information.

  • Garda Vetting is required for all Early Years placements and learners can apply for this through The Open College. Please check our FAQ’s page for more information on Garda Vetting and International Vetting if you have lived outside Ireland for 6 months or more. 

  • Learners must be a based in Ireland and hold an Irish or UK PPS number.

  • Certain assessments require completion of work, which must be observed and evaluated by a Supervisor or Line manager.

  • Learners undertaking this programme must have basic IT skills and access to the necessary equipment to enable them to undertake an online programme: computer, broadband, email, Microsoft, recording equipment necessary for some skills demonstration tasks, and where applicable any other specialised software/equipment. 

  • As this programme is delivered through distance learning or eLearning, students must be capable of studying on their own initiative.

  • Be competent in both written and spoken English.

  • For more details on participation suitability of this course click here».


Progression to further Studies:



  • A combination of module appropriate assessment procedures will facilitate the assessment of learning outcomes of the course.  These methods will include a combination of final written examinations and continuous assessment processes such as assignments, collection of work, learner records, projects and skills demonstration. All assignments will be designed to maximize the individual participant’s skills in their career development All work submitted must be your own work.

  • As part of our quality assurance, student assessment work will be marked by an Internal Assessor, validated by a Verifier with an independent QQI External Authenticator to complete the process.


Protection for Learners on this Childcare Level 5 Major Award

As a course provider our policy on the protection for learners is subject to Section 43 of the Qualifications Act. This means that if, for whatever reason, we cease to provide the programme that is over 3 months in duration which you enrolled for, we have specific and legally binding arrangements in place to finish out that programme for you at no extra cost. All course fees for programmes over 3 months in duration are fully protected and secured by a Bank Guarantee.

If we cease trading those learners who have not finished their programme will be fully protected by this Bank Guarantee which will be automatically triggered and the fund that covers all Fees paid by learners will be transferred to QQI by our Bank to enable QQI provide further study options for these learners or the refund of fees most recently paid so that they can complete their programme and all of this will be at no extra cost to the learners affected.




  • Following successful completion you will receive a  Level 5 Major award in Early Childhood Care & Education - 5M2009 from QQI.
  • QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) is the national awarding body for further education and training in Ireland. The Open College is registered with QQI to offer programmes leading to QQI awards in the National Framework of Qualifications in Ireland. Click here for details of the National Framework of Qualifications.
  • Click here for more detailed Accreditation information.
  • All Registration & Certification Fees are included in the course price.

QQI Distance Learning Courses


Delivery Format


This Early Childhood Care & Education – QQI Level 5 (5M2009) course is completed through Distance Learning and there are no lectures to attend.

Students can complete this course within 13 months which is ample time and can start it at any time of the year that is convenient. If students need to extend this period for any reason during or near the end of the course they can request an extension through the college.


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