Access to HE Diploma (Humanities and Teaching)

The aim of this Access to HE qualification is to provide appropriate preparation and a recognised qualification for progression to university. This is ideal if you have missed out on an opportunity to study previously; whether you are looking to develop new skills to boost your career prospects, you want to gain entry to university or change your career direction.

This part-time, evening course is designed for mature students who want to access university. It is the equivalent of three A levels, completed in one academic year. It is an intensive programme but will assist you with study skills, confidence building and applying for university. Your learning will take place alongside like-minded people in a supportive environment with experienced, friendly tutors.

Teaching and Humanities is an exciting subject area that encompasses a wide range of disciplines such as English literature, history and theology. In its wider context it allows us to understand how society has developed and why it functions as it does today. It can give us a deeper understanding and appreciation of events that are taking place in the world around us and provides us with an invaluable background that can lead to a range of degree options and career opportunities such as teaching, cultural studies, politics, the media, literature, philosophy and so on.

When will I start the course and how long will it take?

The course will start in September. The course will last for one academic year, with attendance being for two evenings per week. There are a mixture of learning methods including attendance at college on a part-time basis, online tutorials and 20 hours of independent study.

The course takes place at St Helens College, Town Centre Campus, St Helens WA10 1PP.

What will I study?

The Access to HE diploma in teaching/humanities covers units drawn from a range of topics as well as core study skills.

This is a modular course consisting of:

  • Theories and Implementation of Education
  • Medieval History
  • An introduction to Theology: Introduction to Islam and Christianity
  • Core Studies with Research Skills
  • Personal Development

You will study alongside like-minded people in classes delivered by friendly supportive tutors.

How is it assessed?

The course is assessed via a combination of coursework and controlled examinations. Each subject offers five units; each unit is worth three credits. Students need sixty credits in order to pass the course.

Do I need any previous qualifications to start this course?

To undertake this qualification, you do not need to have been in education recently.

We do recommend that you have GCSE in Maths and English (Grade C/4 or above) or a university approved equivalent.

However, if you don't have these GCSEs, don't let this be a barrier for realising your aspirations. We have a range of options available to help you gain these qualifications and provide the stepping stones needed to get to university.

All applicants will need to undertake, and pass a diagnostic exercise followed by interview to successfully secure a place on the course.

Application Procedure?

All applicants who meet the entry criteria should complete our online application form.

You will then be invited to undertake a diagnostic exercise, upon successful completion of this, you will be invited to interview. Candidates who successfully pass the interview will be offered a place on the course.

What are the course fees?

Course fees are dependent on your personal circumstances and you may be eligible for funding. For more information on the financial support that may be available, please visit our dedicated Adult Financial support page.

If you are aged 19 or over, you could also choose to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to cover your course fees enabling you to study now, pay later. Loan eligibility isn't dependent on income or employment status and there is no credit check. Loan repayments don't start until you have finished your course and earn over £25,000 per year. For more information, please visit our dedicated Advanced Learner Loan page.

What can I go on to do once I have completed this course?

Upon successful completion, this qualification will prepare you to undertake a degree in a variety of fields.

You could also progress directly onto our degree in Social Policy, Health and Housing or our PCGE at University Centre St Helens.

Some of our successful alumni have used the course as a route into:

  • Primary School Teaching
  • Secondary School Teaching
  • Journalism
  • Archaeology
  • History

Depending on your chosen progression route, some universities may expect you to have gained experience working in a relevant setting. You are strongly advised to check the entry requirements for your preferred universities. If you wish to move into primary school teaching, you are required to possess GCSEs at grade C or above in English, maths and science.

I'm interested in this course, what do I do next?

If you would like any further information in relation to this course, please contact our enquiries team directly on 0800 99 66 99 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You could also drop into our next Enrolment and Information Event. Alternatively, submit an application form to secure a place.

Ref: Brenda O'Brien