Starting with few qualifications

Courses to prepare adults for higher education level study

If you know you want to take a degree or another higher education level course in the future, but you’re not yet ready, there are programmes specially designed to prepare you for this level of study.

You do not usually need qualifications to start the following courses, but you do need to show you have the potential to manage the level of work required. 

Access to Higher Education Diploma courses, offered mainly at local colleges, are designed for adults who don’t have the traditional entry qualifications for higher education study.  It is also possible to take a pre-Access course if you aren't quite ready for an Access to HE Course.

Access modules offered by The Open University are introductory-level courses designed to help adults find out what it’s like to study with the OU, get a taste of a subject area, develop their study skills and build their confidence. 

Foundation year courses offer a one-year extension to an Honours Degree for those who lack the subject specific qualifications normally needed for entry. They are usually suitable for a range of entrants including students who do not meet the minimum academic entry requirements but have significant life and/or work experience.

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