Access to HE Diploma - Routes into Health & Social Care

Delivered at Accrington & Rossendale College University Centre
Start Date Sep 2023
Duration 1 Year
Cost Please enquire

** All fees are payable to Nelson and Colne College Group University Centre

Course overview

The Access to Higher Education (HE) Diploma is a Level 3 qualification that prepares 19+ students who are returning to education or who left school without the qualifications needed to progress to university.

This Access to HE Diploma (Health and Social Care) consists of 60 credits of which 30 credits are in Biology. This allows you to progress on to health related as well as various science related degrees.

What will I learn

This subject consists of six units in which you learn topics such as the human skeleton and muscular system, infectious diseases, cell biology, ecology, and macro molecules. In addition, you will plan and design a practical investigation where you will carry out and analyse and evaluate your findings. Wherever possible, practical experiments are included in the sessions.

Professional Healthcare Practice
This module will prepare you for a role in health by introducing you to the skills and attributes needed to work in the healthcare sector. You will discuss the importance of safeguarding and mental health and wellbeing. You will gain an understanding of health promotion and look at the services available within the health sector and its impact on specific groups within society.

Academic Development and Study Skills
Besides subject knowledge, academic research and writing skills are crucial in helping you with your assignments on the Access to HE Diploma as well as preparing you for your future studies at higher levels. This subject will help you to identify your own skills and those required to progress to a degree and/ or future employment. We will support you with your UCAS application and prepare you for interviews.

How will the courses be assessed?

You are expected to attend all timetabled classes (2.5 days per week) and in addition you are required to do some independent study. Most sessions are scheduled in a biology laboratory, regular classrooms, and computer rooms. There will be some 'live' on-line teaching and learning depending on the subjects.

Entry requirements

This is a demanding A-level equivalent programme, you must have GCSE English and maths at Grade A*- C/ 9-4 or equivalent. For the Health Science pathway, a GCSE grade 4 /C or above in Science is desirable. You will also need to attend an interview and complete application and entry activities.

Please note, some universities require specific GCSE/ Level 2 Functional Skills qualifications and grades. It is a good idea to check with your chosen universities before beginning the Access to HE Diploma.

If you do not have any of these qualifications or are not sure, please get in touch. GCSE and/or Functional Skills Maths and English are available at the College FREE of charge for those without a grade 4 (C).

Please be aware that if your long-term goal is to work within the healthcare professions, it will be necessary to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for your place of employment. If you have a criminal conviction this may exclude you from working in some job roles. Please ensure we are made aware so appropriate advice and guidance can be given.


Students on this pathway typically progress on to degrees and other higher education programmes in the fields of health and science.
Popular progression routes are: nursing, ODP, midwifery, podiatry, paramedics and other health-related studies. This pathway will also allow you to apply to science-related degrees such as biomedical science, forensic science, human biology, animal behaviour and much more.
Nelson and Colne College Group offers exciting degrees and other higher education programmes related to this Access to HE diploma such as: FdA Professional Healthcare Management, BSc (Hons) Sport Coaching and Performance, including BA (Hons) Health and Applied Social Studies, FdA Mental Health Work, and FdA Alcohol and Substance Misuse Work.