Philosophy and education
The field of Early Childhood Studies (ECS) as an academic subject in higher education institutions. The introduction of curricula frameworks in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) in the UK has resulted in a re-examination of qualifications for those working in the field. This chapter provides the historical development of ECS as an academic study. It examines the role of ECS in relation to policy initiatives and development of qualifications in ECEC practice. ECS degrees were developed with the aspiration that they would be established as an academic subject as well as providing a graduate qualified workforce for ECEC. The first degrees started in the early 1990s, and their number increased at the start of the twenty-first century as, at the time, the policy was to move to a graduate-led workforce.