A group of students in silhouette throw mortar boards into the air
Student from University of Sunderland wearing mortar board and gown

Access to Higher Education

Unlock Your Path To University

Our QAA Access to HE (Higher Education) programmes are available for adults aged 19 or over.

These courses are specifically designed to help those who would like to go to university but currently don't have the qualifications they need, such as A Levels.

Access to Higher Education diplomas are widely accepted as an entry qualifications by universities throughout England, Wales and Scotland, so with one of these under your belt, that dream career you've always wanted could be within reach!

Worried about not being able to fit a course into your day? Understandable, but let us tell you some great news - Access to HE courses are taught part-time, usually on two evenings per week (Tuesday and Thursday), so you can fit them neatly around other life commitments!

So, whether you're looking to change job, return to work, boost your career prospects or gain a full Honours degree, our courses offer a route into higher education for people of all ages and backgrounds.

Choose Your Route

Liking the sound of Access to HE?

Your next decision is to choose what route you're interested in. At East Durham College, we currently offering the following three Access to Higher Education pathways:

  • Science
  • Humanities
  • Nursing & Midwifery

Countless people, just like you, considering changing it up, have made a huge difference to their lives with Access to HE.

At EDC, people have moved on to a wide variety of different degree programmes after leaving us, including:

Ancient History - Applied Psychology - Biology - Biological Sciences - Childhood Studies - Computer Science - Computer Game Design & Production - Criminology - Dentistry - Early Childhood Studies - Electronic & Electrical Engineering - English & Creative Writing - Midwifery Studies - Medicine - Nursing Studies (Adult) - Nursing Studies (Child)- Nursing Studies (Learning Disabilities) - Nursing Studies (Mental Health) - Paramedic Science - Pharmacy - Podiatry - Primary Education - Psychology - Psychology with Counselling - Social Work - Sociology - And many more...

Paying for the Course - Let us Introduce You to the Advanced Learner Loan!

You may have already looked at the course fees for Access to HE and thought to yourself - 'How can I afford that?!'

Well, let us put your mind at ease.

For anyone above the age of 19, this course can be fully funded by the Advanced Learner Loan.

The Advanced Learner Loan is exactly what it sounds like - you take out a student loan, just the same as someone studying at university, to pay for the fees of your Access to HE course. However it's not scary as it sounds - if you go on to study at university after taking Access to HE and subsequently complete your degree programme, the Advanced Learner Loan will be completely written off!

Or, subject to your employment status and earnings, you could be eligible to study for FREE! If you're aged 19-23 and don't hold a full level 3 qualification, you could can get the course fully funded. If you're above the age of 23, you can fund the course using the Advanced Learner Loan.

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