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FULL TIME PROGRAMME

IIE Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching



Introduction to IIE Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching


The Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching is an undergraduate professional qualification aimed at preparing graduates to teach children from Grades R to 3. This four year Bachelor’s degree is structured in accordance with the Department of Higher Education and Training’s (DHET) Minimum Requirements for Teacher Education Qualifications. It is also aligned with the new Higher Education Qualifications Framework’s (HEQF) guidelines. The degree will equip Foundation Phase classroom teachers with the knowledge, skills and applied competencies for employability and further specialisation study, in support of the principles of life-long learning.

This BEd degree provides a fundamental and comprehensive education underpinned by subject knowledge in the teaching of all three subjects (Language, Mathematics and Life Skills) in Grades 1 to 3 as well as enabling Foundation Phase teachers to prepare Grade R learners for formal learning. There is a focus on educational theory and methodology aligned with the requirements for a professionally qualified beginner teacher.

What is this Degree’s accreditation status?

The IIE’s Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching is accredited by the Council on Higher Education (CHE) and is registered with the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) as a 482-credit qualification on level 7 (SAQA ID: 96408).

Who is the Bachelor degree aimed at?

If you have a passion for working with young children, are concerned about their education and development and you would like to teach, then this Degree is for you.

The four year professional teaching qualification in Foundation Phase Teaching will equip you with the knowledge, skills and applied competencies identified as critical for you to enter the world of work as a beginner teacher.

Specifically, The IIE BEd in Foundation Phase Teaching will provide you with specialisation linked to this phase of teaching, along with competence in subject matter knowledge, and the integration of all types of learning associated with the acquisition, integration and application of knowledge for teaching purposes within the South African context (DHET, 2011:8).

What entry requirements will I need to study this Bachelor degree?

  • A National Senior Certificate (NSC) with Degree admission with a minimum of 50% in English as a Home Language (HL)* or First Additional Language (FAL)** coupled with a minimum of 50% for 3 x DESIGNATED NSC subjects (This excludes Life Orientation which is a 10 credit subject); OR
  • A National Certificate (Vocational) NC(V) with Degree admission – A minimum of 60 % in English on either First Additional Language or Home Language level AND Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy AND Life Orientation , with a minimum of 70% in the four vocational subjects is required; OR
  • Senior Certificate (SC) (with endorsement) or equivalent with a minimum of 50% in English as a Home Language (HL)* or First Additional Language (FAL)**; OR
  • Alternatively a Higher Certificate, an Advanced Certificate or 240 or 360 credit Diploma in a cognate field may satisfy the minimum admission requirements to degree studies.

If a Higher Certificate, Advanced Certificate or 240 or 360 credit Diploma is not in a cognate field, then at least 20 % of the credits of such qualification must relate to academic literacy or academic skills in order for an applicant to be admitted to degree studies. Such applications will be reviewed by the relevant HoF at The IIE CAT in collaboration with the Registrar.

  • In addition, all applicants to the BEd programmes must have obtained at least a Level 3 (40%) in the selected FAL for which they are applying at the NSC or equivalent level, whether this language has been completed as a HL or FAL; OR
  • Must speak, read and write in the selected BEd FAL as their Mother Tongue (MT) ***. In the event that applicants are admitted on this option, they will be required to complete a written proficiency test in their chosen FAL, the basis of which will inform admission to the FAL, and consequently to the programme itself.

PLEASE NOTE: All FALs offered by The IIE are campus specific, and that not all FALs can be accommodated at each campus.

* Home Language (HL) refers to the language spoken at home.
** First Additional Language refers to the language that is stated as FAL on the NSC
***Mother tongue refers to the language spoken at home

Other considerations
Mature Age Exemption:

Candidates having attained the age of 23 before or during the first year of registration with a Senior Certificate with a minimum of 40% in at least four higher or standard grade subjects, at least three of which shall have been passed simultaneously and one of which shall be a recognised higher grade subject; OR

Candidates must have attained the age of 45 before or during the first year of registration.

Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

Demonstrate suitability for admission in terms of Senate’s resolution 6.6 of 20 October 2005 which allows for Senate’s discretionary conditional admission (if applicable).

Please note that requirements for entry to this qualification are correct at the time of printing. These are, however, subject to change. As such, please confirm entry requirements at the time of registration.

If you have not met the minimum entry requirements but have an NSC with higher certificate or diploma entry into higher education, you may wish to consider registering for The IIE’s Higher Certificate in Business Principles and Practice (HBPP) first as a pathway to this degree. Further information on this qualification is available from our student advisor team.

National Benchmarking Tests

All applicants wishing to study an IIE undergraduate degree on a full-time basis including international students, are required to write the National Benchmark Test (NBT) Academic and Quantitative Literacy (AQL).

The applicant is exempt from writing the NBT AQL test if he/she:

  • is 23 years old or turns 23 during the first year of registration
  • has successfully completed a higher certificate (or equivalent), an advanced certificate or diploma.
  • has previously been admitted to degree studies elsewhere (proof must be supplied)
  • is admitted on the basis of mature age.

For applicants wishing to enrol on a distance programme, the writing of the NBT AQL test is recommended but not compulsory.

Please note an applicant's Academic Literacy (AL) score of the NBT AQL test is used for placement in student support programmes and does not replace the admission requirements for a specific degree programme. Applicants may, on provision of an AL score of the NBT AQL test of 64 or above, be exempted from one or both Academic Literacy short learning programmes (SLPs), namely Introduction to Scholarship A (ITSA010) and Introduction to Scholarship B (ITSB1010), if and only if these are not credit bearing modules in the qualification. Applicants who achieve an AL score of the NBT AQL test lower than 64 are require to register for and successfully complete the ITSA010 and ITSB010 SLPs.

Applicants who do not write the NBT AQL test prior to registration, will automatically be registered for the ITSA010 and ITSB010 SLPs whether or not they are credit bearing modules in the qualification.

Furthermore, students who are completing the ITSA1010 and ITSB101 SLPs as a result of the lower than 64 AL score or who did not provide an AL score, will be required to successfully complete the SLPs before their third year as they are a pre-requisite for entrance onto third year studies. Students enrolled on a distance programme will have access to ITSA010 and ITSB010 SLPs, but it would not be a pre-requisite for registering for any third year modules.

Where ITSA (ITS5111) is credit bearing in the qualification concerned, successful completion of one or both (depending on the curriculum structure) is also a graduation requirement.

What must I pass in order to graduate with this Bachelor degree?

In order to be awarded this qualification, you must have achieved a minimum final year mark of fifty percent (50%) for each module of the programme; and have met any Academic Literacy and Work Integrated Learning requirements, where applicable.

With what qualification will I graduate?

You will graduate with The IIE Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching degree.

Career opportunities: what career areas can I pursue once I have completed this Bachelor degree?

  • Teaching (Grades R – 3)
  • Tutoring
  • School Management (may require further study and/or experience)
  • Educational Consultancy (may require further study and/or experience)

Is it possible to study further to obtain a postgraduate qualification once I have completed The IIE B.Ed in Foundation Phase Teaching Degree?

The IIE’s Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching degree is accredited by the Council on Higher Education (CHE) and is registered with the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) at level 7. This is the same level as other equivalent undergraduate degrees at South African universities. The opportunity to apply for a postgraduate certificate/diploma or honours degree at any South African university exists subject to meeting specific programme entrance requirements.

How do I find out about these further study opportunities?

As a registered student at Varsity College, we will support you in exploring the possible postgraduate options that align to your chosen career area. Upon graduation we also provide our students with a postgraduate information pack. It is important to remember, however, that your academic results remain a key factor when applying for further studies.

How is this Bachelor degree structured at Varsity College?

Teaching Experience
Each year of The IIE B.Ed in Foundation Phase Teaching degree has a required Teaching Experience component. To facilitate this requirement, Varsity College has established strong relationships with schools with which it organises Teaching Experience placements for students. Varsity College, in collaboration with these schools, provides students with the practical preparation and engagement necessary for successful teacher training. Varsity College lecturers visit students on Teaching Experience in order to assist them with their teaching development, assess lessons and to provide feedback. The timing of the Teaching Experience is carefully considered each year to fall in line with the Varsity College Academic Calendar.

The IIE BEd in Foundation Phase Teaching degree is a four-year degree. The academic year runs from February to November. Modules (individual subjects) are delivered on a full-time basis with lectures and tutorials being scheduled during the day from Monday to Friday.

In addition to attending lectures, you will be expected to spend time constructing your own study plan and doing your own research and work on assignments. Learning material is of the highest quality and offers you a blended learning experience in which face-to-face teaching sessions are supplemented with specific online learning activities, digital content/study material, relevant current textbooks and appropriate assessments.

To maximise the benefits of your blended learning experience and VC’s Wireless classrooms and campuses, you are required to BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology) mobile device – a netbook, laptop or tablet – in order to develop the necessary academic and digital literacies over the course of this qualification.

The curriculum outlined below is correct at the time of print. Please note however, that in line with academic practice, The IIE’s curriculum is annually reviewed and so changes may occur in module structure and sequence to ensure that the qualification remains relevant and effective. The exit level outcomes of the programme, however, will not change. Registered students receive updated programme curriculum on an annual basis.

The outcomes in the design of this programme were identified as critical to drive a successful career in Foundation Phase teaching. As a graduate of this programme, you will therefore be suitably prepared to move into your teaching career through clear demonstration of the basic competencies of a beginner teacher (as laid out in the Minimum requirements for Teacher Education Qualifications).

The modules in the degree are divided into three main components:

  • Professional Subjects
    These modules include primarily a focus on building fundamental subject knowledge of languages (language to be determined geographically)
  • Professional Themes
    These modules are aligned to build on educationally-focussed disciplinary learning with a focus on the theoretical underpinnings of education.
  • Professional Didactics
    These modules include a focus on the pedagogy and didactics (i.e. the method and practice of teaching) related to phase specialisation. A knowledge mix, supporting teaching of all three Foundation Phase subjects has been included: Languages, Mathematics and Life Skills. Each FP “teaching” subject is broken down into specific skill/content areas. These modules are underpinned by developing subject matter knowledge and through teaching these subject areas in alignment with the national school curriculum.
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*SLP: Short Learning Programme



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