Award, Certificate and Diploma – Level 3


These qualifications provide in-depth information about the role of the Level 3 playworker when working with children and young people between the ages of 4 to 16. They provide an understanding of the management of play environments and the line management of other staff.

The Award and Certificate are mainly knowledge based, with a limited amount of practical application. The Diploma covers the knowledge and skills needed when working unsupervised. It is also a must-have for all those undertaking the Level 3 Playwork Apprenticeship.

What does the qualification cover?

This qualification provides you with the core knowledge and skills needed to work in a senior role within play settings.
You will need to complete 13 mandatory units and approximately 2-3 optional units to achieve this qualification. From the mandatory units you will gain knowledge, understanding and skills in the following key areas of Playwork:

  • Playwork Principles
  • Working within a play environment and support children’s play
  • Health and safety
  • Safeguarding children
  • Teamwork.

From the optional units you will gain knowledge, understanding and skills in areas of your choice. These could include (but are not limited to):

  • Managing a budget
  • Supporting disabled children in a play environment
  • Supporting parents, families and carers
  • Supporting the travel of children outside the play environment.

The optional units provide you with the opportunity to specialise in specific areas that relate most closely to your interests and/or the working practices of your particular workplace.

Who is it suitable for?

Experienced playworkers who have a wide knowledge and understanding of children and young people and an appreciation of playwork principles and practice.

What are the entry requirements?

There are no formal entry requirements for this qualification but you will need to be at least 18 years of age.

How is it assessed?

They will be assessed by your tutor or assessor using a range of methods. This could include direct observation in the workplace, a portfolio of evidence, written assignments or a task set by CACHE.

Do you need to be working to take the qualification?

For the Award and Certificate you will only require basic access to a playwork environment. For the Diploma you will need to be working, volunteering or on practical placement as you need to show competence in both knowledge and skills

How long does it take to complete?

You can usually complete them in a year or less.  Apprenticeships are required to be a minimum of a year and 1 day.

What could this qualification lead to?

This qualification provides you with the knowledge, understanding and skills to work in a level 3 unsupervised job role in play settings, and as supervisors to other staff in the following job roles:

  • Breakfast and after school club deputy or manager
  • Playwork development officer
  • Adventure centre supervisor
  • Hospital playworker.