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Nursing and Health Professions – Level 3 Access to Higher Education Diploma


Level 3



Type of study

School Leavers




1 Year

This one-year course prepares adult learners who want to study at degree level but do not currently have the qualifications to apply. This course is specifically designed to give you the foundation skills and knowledge, with a strong biology focus, for studying a nursing, healthcare, or midwifery degree.


Why choose this course? 

· Provides a fast-track route to higher education – 75% of students progressed straight to degree study in 2023

· Continuous assessment with no end of year exams

· Gain important GCSE Maths alongside this course

· Includes valuable training in professional competencies from a Registered Nurse in our state-of-the-art training ward


Advanced Learner Loans 

Advanced Learner Loans are available to students aged 19 and over taking an Access to Higher education course. The loan covers tuition fees and is paid back once the course is completed and you’re earning more than £26,568 a year, so there is no upfront cost. Plus, if you go on to complete a full degree, your loan for the Access course will be written off.

Find out more here.

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You will need to have English at GCSE (or Level 2 equivalent) and will be offered the opportunity to study Maths if required.

Most students are aged 19 or above at the start of the course – please contact the College for more details.


Access to Nursing focuses on developing fundamental subject knowledge in Biology and Psychology, providing an excellent foundation for studying at degree level. Biological modules encompass Anatomy and Physiology, which examines the structures of the human body, both internal and external, and their functions. Human Immune System delves into the protective network that defends the body against infections and diseases. Nutrition and Digestion concentrate on food consumption’s impact on the body’s systems, particularly the stomach and bowels. Cell Biology explores the structure, function, and behaviour of cells, while Genetics analyses the influence of genes on health and disease. Reproduction explores the process by which organisms replicate.

In Psychology modules, Medical Psychopathology explores the notion that mental health disorders have physical causes, while Biomedical Health Psychology focuses solely on biological factors, excluding psychological, environmental, and social influences.

In addition to these subject-specific modules, you’ll undertake an independent project based on your interests. Recent projects have explored topics such as mental health issues in the military.


Combination of Exam and Assignment 


This course gives you UCAS tariff points for entry to University.

By the end of the course you will be fully prepared to progress on to a range of FdSc or BSc (Hons) degree programmes and take the next step towards your career goals.


This course runs one external trip a year, to Winchester University, where they hold an Access to Higher Education Taster Day where queries about fees and funding can be answered, regardless of what university you wish to go to. 

In order to support your application for higher education, we recommend you attain as much work experience in the field as possible. Places at universities are extremely competitive, so ensuring you give yourself the best chance at success is critical. 


You will be taught in our Andover Sixth building and will have access to many different facilities, including: 2 study centres, a Library, A canteen and the Careers Hub.