Journey educators share their stories of juggling work and ECT studies
The Sector > Quality > Professional development > Journey educators share their stories of juggling work and ECT studies

Journey educators share their stories of juggling work and ECT studies

by Freya Lucas

April 13, 2023

A group of three educators from early childhood education and care (ECEC) provider Journey Early Learning have shared their stories of juggling work and studying for their Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching at Victoria University (VU).


As with many other Victorian institutions, Victoria University is offering a place-based Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching designed to meet the workforce need for early childhood teachers to provide high-quality early childhood education to young children across the state. 


The VU program accepts diploma-qualified early childhood educators, who then study with others from their Local Government Area (LGA) to complete the Bachelor of Early Childhood in two years.


In the piece below Nilima, Alana and Emily share their experiences of participating in the program, their motivation and goals behind their studies, and how they manage to work and study at the same time. 


For Nilima, further study was always a goal, but the financial constraints of juggling a growing family meant that University remained out of reach. 


“During my maternity leave, I received details about a Victorian Government grant to study a Bachelor of Early Childhood, and I immediately grabbed the opportunity as the timing was perfect,” she said. 


“Staying at home with a newborn allowed me to explore this new challenge, and I am very much enjoying it.”


Alana learnt about the opportunity from Journey directly and said she has always been motivated to develop her career. 


“I love what I do, and this degree is an excellent way for me to extend that.” 


For others who are considering studying while working, she recommends the experience, saying “the course has been tremendous, and the lecturer I currently have is so helpful; it is great to have those Zoom classes where we can interact with one another. I work full time (as most of us do), plus I have a three-year-old and care for my dad, and at the beginning, I thought this would be too much for me, but it has actually been fantastic, not overwhelming at all! The advice I would give to anyone is just to do it if they are thinking about it! Take that leap and develop the career you want to have.”


Emily agreed saying “It is definitely worth taking that first step; if you are wanting to further your knowledge and are unsure how to do it, this is the best next thing you can do.”


At VU evening classes are held online through Zoom, which means that the students can work and study simultaneously. Throughout the course, the students develop expertise in working with children from birth to five years, deepening their understanding of:


  • teaching methods for kindergarten, childcare, and other early-childhood settings
  • early-childhood learning theories
  • cultural competency, including Aboriginal perspectives.


The assessments are designed to draw on and develop student’s current knowledge. The students must complete exercises related to their ECEC work, such as creating art-based responses, designing learning opportunities, and reflecting on workplace documentation.


The Victorian Government is currently working with three universities to support eligible Victorian educators to train to become qualified kindergarten teachers. In addition to Victoria University, there are programs available at Australian Catholic University and Deakin University.


For further information, visit the dedicated innovative early childhood teaching course sites: 


Australian Catholic University’s Accelerated Bachelor of Early Childhood Education

Deakin University’s Accelerated Bachelor of Early Childhood Education

Victoria University’s Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching

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