Nursing and Midwifery - Access to Higher Education (HE) Diploma (Altrincham Campus)

Level 1 Diploma
Course Location


Trafford College


Altrincham Campus.

Further Details



Course Start Date


Course Duration


Access to Higher Education

Course Overview

This course is designed to prepare mature students for University level study. If you want to work in nursing, as a midwife or in related health professions this is the course for you.

In 2019-20, 96% of students on our Access Nursing & Midwifery diplomas secured offers of university places. This compares with a progression rate of just 67% across all Access diploma courses in England and Wales.

The course runs for an academic year and you will be attending three days per week for 32 weeks. You will be attending for 14.5 hours per week (13.5 hours of lessons and 1 hour of tutorial). You will also need to allow at least 6 hours per week for private study and assignment completion.

Approximate times: 9am – 4pm (times to be confirmed)

This course requires you to have achieved GCSE English Language and Maths at grade C or above/ grades 4-9.

Please note that for some degree courses (e.g. Midwifery), you will also need GCSE Science at a similar grade.

The pathway will run subject to minimum numbers being reached.
On this pathway you will study the following units:
• Human Biology (mandatory)
• Health Sciences (mandatory)
• Health Studies or Psychology
Health Studies and Psychology.

Most university admissions tutors will accept the Access to HE Diploma as an entry qualification for Higher Education, but there may be some degrees for which this certificate alone may not be acceptable. The suitability of the course for your ultimate career aim will be discussed at interview.

Progression from this pathway can be on to degree programmes such as Midwifery, Adult Nursing, Children’s Nursing, Integrated Practice in Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work, Operating Department Practice, Mental Health Nursing and many more.

Please note that whilst your subject tutors and Personal Tutor will make every effort to support your application for a university place, progression onto a specific higher education course cannot be guaranteed. It can be a highly competitive process, and your tutors, together with the college Careers Advisers, will try to give you realistic advice as to your chances of progression. Alternative routes into the career of your choice can be discussed.

One of ourpast students, Claire McNeill, provided the following case study;
After leaving school I started working and quickly lost the motivation to undertake any further education. As time passed though, I realised how important it was for me to achieve my potential, and to have a career that I could be proud of. It was a scary decision to leave my job in place of full time study, but I was determined to make a positive change in my life.
Having been out of study for 8 years, I worried initially that I may lack the skills needed to complete the course. Although the workload was intense at times, the support that I received both personally and academically was fantastic. All of the tutors were amazing. They were committed to helping me succeed, and were always there to help. Furthermore, many of the skills I practiced at college such as; research, essay writing and Harvard referencing have helped me greatly at university.

Currently I am coming to the end of my second year at Manchester Metropolitan University, where I am working towards becoming an adult nurse. It is hard work, but is so worth it. I have made a lot of great friends and had many wonderful experiences, all of which have helped me to grow in confidence and as a person. Looking back to four years ago, I could not have imagined being where I am today. I have no regrets about returning to study; it is the best decision I have ever made.

Assessments include essays, practical reports, case studies, open or closed-book examinations and verbal, visual or IT-based presentations. All modules will include an element of time-constrained assessment which will contribute towards the final module grade.

Upon successful completion of this course you will be awarded an Access to Higher Education Diploma from Open Awards.

If you are aged 19-23, and have not yet completed a level 3 course (e.g. A-levels, BTEC level 3 Diploma, Access to HE Diploma), there are usually no fees to pay. This is because your course fees are covered by the Level 3 Learner Entitlement.

If you are aged 19-23 and have already completed a level 3 course, or if you are aged 24 or over, the Access Diploma fees will be covered by an Advanced Learner Loan and if you go on to complete a higher education course, Student Finance England will ‘write off’ any outstanding Advanced Learner Loan balances you owe. Further information can be found at Advanced Learner Loan – GOV.UK (

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