Health and social care

Aims of the curriculum

  • To prepare students for a career in Health, Social Care or Early Years Provision
  • To prepare students for further or higher academic study in HSC & EY
  • To educate students in the workings of HSC & EY services, equipping them for family life, adulthood and parenthood.
  • To promote a caring ethos to carry with us throughout all aspects of life

Curriculum overview

Care is something everyone needs throughout their lives, and some may need more care than others. For example, the vulnerable such as children and the elderly. There will always be jobs caring for people and studying units on this subject will give you an insight into the vast range of opportunities in this area and whether you might be interested in one of them as a career.

Even if you are not considering caring as a career, the units offered will provide you with the knowledge of how children grow and develop and how to handle health emergencies. This course will also equip you with some of the skills necessary to care and communicate with vulnerable groups and work colleagues. 

Unit RO21: Essential values of care for use with individuals in care settings

(Mandatory unit - 1 hour written exam – 25%)

You will learn:

  • How to support individuals to maintain their rights
  • The importance of the values of care and how they are applied
  • How legislation impacts on care settings
  • How personal hygiene, safety and security measures protect individuals

Unit RO22: Communicating and working with individuals in health, social care and early years settings

(Mandatory unit – Coursework task – 25%)

You will learn:

  • How to communicate effectively
  • The personal qualities that contribute to effective care
  • To communicate effectively within a health, social care and early years setting

RO28: Understanding the development and protection of young children in early years settings

(Optional unit – Coursework task – 25%)

You will learn:

  • The key milestones of physical, intellectual and language development between 0-5 years
  • The key milestones of emotional and social development between 0-5 years
  • To create a safe environment to protect children (in an early years setting)

RO31: Using basic first aid procedures

(Optional unit – Coursework task – 25%)

You will learn:

  • To assess scenes of accidents to identify risks and continuing dangers
  • The first aid procedures for a range of injuries
  • To apply basic first aid procedures

Teaching methods and student organisation

  • Coursework has to be completed in the classroom as controlled assessment. This is done on computer, with very little opportunity to talk. Candidates must be supervised by a member of staff but there are restrictions on the amount of support allowed
  • Role plays are used as a fun way for learners to experience realistic situations which are likely to arise in health or social care settings
  • Scenarios, case studies and problem solving are commonly used at KS4 to enable learners to develop the application of theory into practice
  • Creative writing tasks allow learners to be innovative; thus thinking of various ways to develop concepts and ideas
  • Brainstorms and posters are often used as a visual aid to learning and remembering information
  • Group work is often a key element at KS4 and links to all of the above methods. Classes are all mixed ability which helps learners to share their understanding and build on the knowledge which they have gathered
  • PowerPoint presentations are encouraged as individual or group tasks to enhance learning about HSC issues and also ICT skills
  • Students often need to conduct primary research: Interviews, Observations, Questionnaire Surveys to gain more in-depth knowledge and understanding
  • Students also need to conduct secondary research: internet, textbook, library, media to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding

Progression after Key Stage 4

Many Health and Social Care students will continue their studies at AS/A level and even to degree level. The subject will equip students with the knowledge and skills to consider a career in any of the caring professions, for example, Primary School Teaching, Nursing, working with those with physical disabilities, learning disabilities, mental disabilities, Social Work, Nursery Nursing, caring for the elderly, Counselling, Environmental Health. It will also compliment subjects like Psychology, Sociology, Science, PE, etc and will give people the knowledge and understanding of the services and support available to them and how to live a healthier lifestyle.

Additional classes and extra curricular activities

  • Coursework Catch-up/revision sessions after school on designated nights
  • Several tasks require students to arrange and carry out interviews with practitioners, service users, parents etc. A visit to an Early Years care setting would be extremely beneficial, but would need to be arranged independently


How can you help your child?

  • Ensure your child attends every possible lesson. If teaching is missed, this will affect their depth of knowledge and ultimately their overall grade.
  • If absence cannot be avoided, ensure your child catches up in their own time.
  • Impress upon your child the importance of meeting coursework and homework deadlines. Meeting deadlines ensures that they have constructive feedback on how to improve their work.
  • Make sure your child is well organised with folders for notes, diary/schedules for important dates/revision.
  • Ensure your child attends all additional sessions after school and in the holidays.


Useful health and social care websites