Access to Higher Education (Healthcare Practitioners Pathway)

Are you 19 or over? Are you looking for direct entry to a degree or higher education programme?

Level: 3

Duration: One year, 3 days a week from 9am to 3pm, September to June

Venues: Lincoln


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Course description

Read Lucy's view

Access to Higher Education at Lincoln College provides the opportunity to study on an intensive course in preparation for University courses.

Successful students will receive a full level 3 Access to Higher Education diploma validated by the Cambridge Access Validating Agency (CAVA).

Access programmes are well established throughout the country as an alternative to A level entry to degree programmes at universities and colleges of higher education. They provide entry to a degree with no previous qualifications.

The Access programme is divided into different 'pathways', catering for students with differing career and vocational ambitions.

The Healthcare Practitioners pathway is a full time course tailored to suit those interested in degrees and careers in nursing, midwifery, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, health administration among others.

There are three core units:

  • Study Skills and Personal and Career Development - includes discussion, practice of writing skills, time management and presentation techniques.
  • Information Technology - includes keyboarding, word processing, spreadsheets and databases and graphics.
  • Tutorial - is a support and guidance service.

These three elements prepare you for the requirements of degree programmes.

There are three option units.

Biology: (Natural Science): using general biology with the focus on human studies, this programme introduces students to the study of investigative methods.
Psychology: includes study of cognitive, social and developmental psychology.
Sociology: includes study of class, gender and ethnic inequalities. Students also analyse sociological approaches to crime and deviance and the media.

This pathway is also offered in the evenings. It is aimed at students who intend to remain in employment while also studying three evenings per week between 5pm and 9pm for 1 year. The course is the same as the daytime course apart from the number of available units of Sociology and Psychology is slightly reduced but this does not have a negative effect on the overall diploma.

We give you experience of all the teaching, learning and assessment styles you will find on a degree programme, so that you can be confident in lectures, seminars and discussion groups, as well as in writing essays. We start with what you can do and build up from there.

Students wishing to take Radiology or Physiotherapy should also explore with University Admissions Tutors the possibility of taking the Access to Science Pathway as an alternative.

Entry requirements

All applicants must have a grade C or above in Mathematics and English at GCSE level.

if you are applying for midwifery you will need a minimum of 5/6 GCSE's at grade C or above including Mathematics, Science and English

All students are required to pass the Lincoln College diagnostic test in Maths and English followed by a satisfactory interview with a relevant pathway tutor.




Progress & Assessment

Assessment is based on coursework and examinations.

Progression is to degrees and other higher education programmes e.g. diplomas in nursing, midwifery, social work.


The Access programme is certified by the Cambridge Access Validating Agency (CAVA) validated by the Quality Assurance Agency for HE.

Most universities will expect you to have studied subjects or have experience in the areas for which you apply.



Students aged 19-23 years

Some courses are subsidised by the government.  You may be entitled to a discount for these courses dependant upon your circumstances.

Fees for this course (Including exam fees and other costs) are: £1635

Students aged 24+ years

If you are applying for a Level 3 or Level 4 course, you may be eligible to apply for a 24+ Advanced Learning Loan; for further information visit

Fees for this course (Including exam fees and other costs) are: £3022

You can find out more about the financial support available at the College at


Students may need to contribute towards the cost of trips.

*Fees may be subject to change for 15/16

Further Information

Contact name:

Carol King

Contact school:

School of Business, Advanced and continuing Education

Contact number:

For further details please contact the Information Office on 030 030 32435