Foundation Course in Electoral Administration

The AEA is pleased to provide details of the 2021 programme for the Foundation Course in Electoral Administration. This major initiative of the Association has quickly become established as one of the leading sources of training in electoral administration in the country. The course is primarily aimed at new entrants to the profession and at those staff wishing to go on and undertake the Association’s Qualification.

The Foundation Course was launched in 2004 with the twin aims of:

  • providing a sound knowledge base for new entrants in both electoral registration and elections administration
  • preparing members for undertaking the Certificate level of the Association’s Qualification.

The course will also be suitable for those more experienced staff who need a refresher or to get up to date with the ever-changing legal and administrative background to electoral administration.

The six modules covered are:

  • Module Gen1 – covering cross cutting themes such as Data Protection, Dies Non, Publicity, Use of School/public Rooms
  • Module ER1 – Electoral Registration Officer and the Registration Process
  • Module ER2 – Annual Canvass, Publication and Supply of the Electoral Register, Absent Voting Applications and Other Registration Issues
  • Module EA1 – Returning Officer, Election Timetables, Nominations and Election Documents
  • Module EA2 – Agents, Postal Voting and Polling Stations
  • Module EA3 – Staffing arrangements, the Count and Post Count procedures

The six modules are based largely on the Certificate syllabus and a detailed list of the individual topics to be covered is available. If you would like a copy, please email

The course will be delivered by AEA accredited trainers using detailed course notes which will be made available to all those attending as part of the handouts of the course. These notes form the complete Foundation Course manual, a printed version of which will be supplied to all those who attend all six modules of the course. In addition, such persons will receive a Certificate of Attendance to demonstrate that they have attended all six modules. Completing all six modules of the Foundation Course is one of two ways to gain entry onto the AEA Certificate programme as the next level of the AEA Qualification.

There are three options available for those wanting to undertake the Foundation course – day study over five days throughout the year, as a four-day residential course or as an online course over five days delivered using Microsoft Teams.

In England and Wales, members wishing to undertake the Certificate who are unable to demonstrate three years relevant work experience must have completed or will complete the Foundation Course by the end of the calendar year in which they wish to register.

Please note, because of potential coronavirus implications, the AEA reserves the right to move any course online if face to face delivery becomes impractical.

2021 Course Delivery Details

Foundation Course 2021 Flyer

Foundation Course 2021 Booking form

Day Study – Dates and Venues

Leeds 2021 London 2021
Modules GEN1 & ER1 *19 January *26 January
Module ER2 *2 March *9 March
Module EA1 22 June 29 June
Module EA2 21 September 28 September
Module EA3 19 October 26 October

*Due to Covid-19, the first two modules at the Leeds and London venues will be delivered online via Microsoft Teams.

Residential Course – Date and Venue

June 2021 – Monday 14 – Thursday 17 June 2021 – Milton Keynes

Online Study – Dates

The course will be delivered over five days starting at 10.00 finishing at 4.00.

Spring 2021 Autumn 2021
Modules Gen1 & ER1 24 February 15 September
Module ER2 26 February 17 September
Module EA1 1 March 20 September
Module EA2 3 March 22 September
Module EA3 5 March 24 September