Access to HE Diploma Health Professions (Level 3)

What is the Course About?

The Open Awards Access to Higher Education (HE) Diploma is specifically designed to help adult learners (over 18) who wish to study at degree level, but do not have the current qualifications required for entry. It has been designed to give you relevant academic subject knowledge and the opportunity to learn how to approach study at university-level and develop techniques to help you succeed.

This pathway is offered as a one-year programme typically between 32 and 34 weeks full time. Students usually attend college for approximately 15 hours per week e.g. 9.30am-3pm and are expected to undertake independent study outside of these hours.

Access courses are designed to prepare students for undergraduate study and are therefore intense courses that require significant time investment. This Level 3 course is subject to minimum student numbers.

What subjects/units/modules* will I study?

The Access to HE Diploma will allow you to begin studying course specific subjects whilst also working on units aimed at preparing you for undergraduate level study, such as study and research skills.

The Diploma is composed of a number of units with a level and credit value. Students must achieve 60 credits in total. 15 of the credits are from ungraded units and 45 are graded and are awarded at Pass, Merit or Distinction.

Graded units are divided equally between biology, psychology and sociology modules. There are 5 units per module, with a coursework assignment to be completed for each unit. Coursework is marked internally by lecturers- there are no exams for this course.

The combination of modules has been carefully selected to help students progress on to courses such as Adult Nursing, Mental Health Nursing and Health and Social Care degree pathways.

How can I find out more about the course?

If you apply for this course, you will be invited to an Information Sharing Appointment (ISA) when you will be given more detailed information about the course and when you’ll be able to ask any questions you may have.

When will I get a timetable?

Timetables are issued during Induction in September.

Useful links

A quick guide to course fees

Student Awards (Grants)

Free School Meals


International Applications

Student Emergency Fund

What happens once I have applied?

We will send you an email to let you know we have received your application. If you are new to the course area you have applied for, you will be invited to an Information Sharing Appointment (ISA) along with all other applicants to the course.

Please note: applicants are invited to ISAs depending on the date the application was received (there is limited capacity for each ISA so you may not be invited to the same one as other applicants who have applied for the same course). You will receive your invitation via email, to the email address you used when setting up your UCM Learner Portal.

Popular Courses

Sometimes we get a high volume of applications for particular courses. If your first choice course is popular, we’ll let you know and ask if you would like us to process your second choice course as well. This doesn’t mean you won’t be considered for your first choice it just provides you with a back-up plan.

International/UK Applicants

If you are an international/UK applicant someone from UCM will contact you remotely. It is essential that you have uploaded copies of your results/ certificates and relevant translations of grades/ certificates. Please note, if you are an international applicant and your application is received later than the end of May (i.e. three months before the start of the academic year) we will not be able to process it as the immigration processes would exceed the timescale required to start in September.

What do I need to know about Information Sharing Appointments (ISAs)?

Do I have to attend an ISA?

If you are invited to an ISA, you must attend!

What happens if I can’t attend the ISA I’m invited to?

Please let us know and we will make sure you are invited to an ISA on a different date.

What happens if I don’t attend an ISA?

If you fail to attend two ISAs without letting us know why, we will assume you don’t want us to continue with your application.

How long will the ISA take?

The ISA will start at 4:30 p.m.

(If parents/carers bring you to the ISA, they can wait in the College’s refectory; there are vending machines available.)

What can I expect at the ISA?

A presentation about the course and a one to one chat with staff.

What should I wear?

Smart casual, comfortable clothes.

What will I need to bring?

Your Record of Achievement and a smile.

Who do I contact if I have mobility or additional educational needs that I would like to discuss before the ISA?

Please email

What happens once I’ve attended an ISA?

We will contact you within 5 working days of the ISA to either:

make you an unconditional offer (i.e. a definite place on the course);

make you a conditional offer (i.e. a place on the course IF you get the results required in the summer exams);

suggest you apply for another course because the one you have applied for is not suitable for you (if this is the case it is likely we will have discussed this with you during the ISA).

What happens if I get an unconditional offer?

You will be invited in to enrol, which is when you are given your student card. This may happen in the summer, if not you will be enrolled at the start of your course.

What happens if I get a conditional offer?

If you have applied for an FE course, you will need to upload your results to your UCM Learner Portal, once you get them (e.g. GCSE, BTEC). We will then check to see you have got what is needed for the course and, if you have, we will convert your offer to unconditional, which means you definitely have a place on the course. You will be enrolled at the start of your course (that’s when you get your student card).

If you are unlucky and don’t get what you need for the course you applied for, you will be invited in to find out what else is available to you at UCM.

What are my progression and career options?

Subject to UCAS points students can progress onto a range of degree courses both on and off island. The number of UCAS tariff points availablefor the Access to HE Diploma varies between 48 and 144 points, dependent on your Diploma grade profile.

How will I be assessed?

The Access to HE Diploma is equivalent to a full level 3 qualification e.g. 3 A levels or a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma. Study on the Access to HE Diploma makes academic demands that are at an equivalent level to those of other level 3 qualifications. Assessment methods vary between courses but may include reports, essays, coursework, projects, case studies and centre set examinations.

Entry requirements

C or above in English and Maths as a minimum.