Higher Education Course Options

At Northern Regional College we offer a range of higher education courses giving you a choice in your learning.  Whether you want to jump start your career or progress to university you will find a course to suit you.   Qualifications include Higher Level Apprenticeships (HLAs), Foundation Degrees, Higher National Certificates/Diplomas and Degree and much more.

We also offer an Access to University course - this course provides mature students with an alternative route to progress to full-time and part-time higher education.  It provides an experience which is stimulating, varied and appropriate for adult learners.  This is a modularised course and is set at A Level standard.  The modularised structure offers greater flexibility and is particularly important for mature students who may have to fit their study around other commitments.

Types of Higher Education Qualifications

Higher National Certificates (HNC)
HNCs usually take one year to complete full-time and two years part-time.  They are highly valued by employers and can also count towards membership of professional bodies and other employer organisations.  You can convert your HNC to a HND and/or an Honours degree with extra study.
 
Higher National Diploma (HND)
It usually takes two years full-time study to complete a HND.  The course can sometimes be taken on a part-time basis but will take longer to complete.  HNDs are designed to give students the skills for a particular field of work.  They can lead straight to a career and can also be used to progress within a current career.  A HND can be converted to an Honours degree with extra study.

Higher Level Apprenticeships (HLAs)
A Higher Level Apprenticeship incorporates a work-based learning programme and leads to a nationally recognised qualification at Level 4 and above.

Foundation degree
Foundation degrees are higher education qualifications that combine academic and work related learning. They offer a route into employment, a way to progress within an existing job or the opportunity to re-skill in a new profession.  A Foundation degree is a recognised higher education qualification in its own right or upon completion, with appropriate grades, you may be eligible for exemption from the first year of a related degree programme at some Universities.

Degree
An Honours degree, sometimes known as an 'ordinary' or 'first' degree, is a course of academic study leading to a qualification such as a Bachelor of Arts (BA Hons) or Bachelor of Science (BSc Hons).  It usually takes three or four years to complete full-time and may take longer if being done on a part-time basis.  Students who have achieved an HND or a Foundation Degree in a relevant subject will sometimes be eligible to start part way into an Honours Degree.


 


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