Course Title Access to Higher Education (HE) Diploma
Code BCUC6

Overview of the Course

The Access to Higher Education Diploma is a QAA accredited course that provides
adult learners with the essential qualification, subject specific knowledge and skills to progress to studies at university level.

There are currently four diplomas available at Bury College and three more in development. Each consists of between three and four subject specific modules that enable you to meet university’s entry requirements. In addition to gaining subject knowledge, the course aims to develop and enhance your essential study skills in preparation for university studies, including referencing, academic writing and ICT skills. Highly qualified and experienced Access to Higher Education tutors will provide one-to-one guidance and support to help you with your university qualification.

Successful completion of the 60-credit diploma programme will provide you with opportunity to progress onto studying a wide range of subjects at university level, including most healthcare-related degrees:

• Social Work / Care / Policies
• Psychology, Sociology and Criminology
• Primary Education and Education Studies
• English, History and Creative Writing; Science and Electrical Engineering

Alongside your Access to Higher Education Diploma, you will be given the opportunity to study for one GCSE in English, Maths or Science. Terms and conditions apply.

What are the career opportunities?

On completion of this course you may wish to apply to university. Feedback and success stories from past students shows that lives are changed and people move on with high levels of confidence. Access students are prized by universities who consider them committed, well prepared and eager to learn more.

What are the entry requirements?

• Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions pathway: GCSE grade C (4/5) or above in English and maths with relevant work experience. GCSE Science at C (4/5) or above desired

• Social Sciences (Criminology or Social Work) Diploma: GCSE grade C (4/5) or above in English and maths plus relevant work experience

• Education and Humanities (History or Media Studies) Diploma: GCSE grade C (4/5) or above in English or maths. For applicants applying for Primary Education, GCSE English, Maths and Science at grade C (4/5) or above with relevant work experience

• Science and Engineering Diploma GCSE (4/5) or above in English and maths, with relevant work experience. GCSE Science at C (4/5) or above desired

Course Start


Course Duration

One year

What topics will I study?

Your choice of diploma dictates the modules you will study. In some cases you will have a module of your choice dependent on your intended progression route.

Our range of popular diplomas includes:

·         Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions Diploma: Human Biology, Science for Health, Health Studies and Psychology

·         Social Sciences (Criminology or Social Work) Diploma: Social Work Studies or Criminology, Sociology and Psychology

·         Education and Humanities Diploma: English (Language and Literature), Creative Writing, and History or Media Studies

·         Science and Engineering: Maths, Physics, and Electrical Engineering or Chemistry

Bury College Access to Higher Education diplomas meet the stringent requirements of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education and progression of our students onto a wide range of degree courses is excellent. The diploma programmes also enhance student’s academic progression and employability with a range of extracurricular activities, including academic and industry guest lectures, and visits to universities and local employers.

Assessment is varied and includes coursework throughout the year. In addition to our diploma courses, all Access students are offered the opportunity to undertake one GCSE subject for progression to university. External GCSE exams take place in the summer term.



For the diploma programme, a range of assessments are used depending on the nature of subjects; these include written coursework, internal examinations and presentations. All the GCSE additionalities are assessed through external examinations in the summer.

Special Features

As an Access student studying at Bury College University Centre you may apply for an Advanced Learning Loan, which provides financial support for learners aged 19 or over who are studying at Level 3 or above. If you choose to progress to higher education on successful completion of your Access course you will have the outstanding balance of the loan written off when you pass your university qualification.

Are there any additional costs or requirements?

All students receive an initial allocation of 600 credits per academic year for printing and photocopying, additional credits can be purchased if required.

To view the course fees please click here.

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