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Course Mode
Start Date
Start Time
1 Year
Milnthorpe Road Campus

Access to HE

It’s never too late! Our courses are specifically designed for adults aged 19 and over returning to study, either after a break or as part of a career change. They offer a proven and successful route to university study.

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Course Overview

This course offers progression onto higher education degree level courses and a chance to change your career and prospects. You could progress to courses in, for example, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, Pharmacy, Radiography, Biomedical Sciences and a range of related degrees.

You need to be at least 19 years of age to study on this course and a student loan is available to cover the cost of tuition fees. If you subsequently progress on to a degree course and successfully complete it, this loan will be written off.
The OCN London Access to HE Diploma programme is designed to enable progress to higher education degree level courses. You will attend college for typically two days per week, but should also set aside additional time for private study required for background reading and completing assignments. Progression to HE will depend on the grades you achieve in your assignments..

The Access course is made up of separate modules, each contributing towards the Diploma. The main subjects are Biology (e.g. Anatomy and Physiology, Botany, Zoology and Ecology), Chemistry (e.g. Organic, Inorganic and Physical) and Physics (e.g. Energy, Electricity and Atomic Structure) together with Mathematics relevant to scientists. The modules have been selected to maximise your chances of progressing onto your desired University course. Within these subjects there will be some choice of study. You will also learn the study skills required for both this course and the next one.

If you feel that you have studied similar material previously you may claim Accredited Prior Learning (APL) for such study (subject to approval by the awarding body. Our tutors would be happy to advise you about this.

Assessment varies according to each module, but is typically written assignments and controlled assessments. Each assignment is graded pass, merit or distinction and contributes to the overall grade for the course.

Entry Requirements

The Access to Science course is designed for adults, aged 19 and over, who want to progress to higher education, degree-level courses, but do not have the necessary qualifications.

Learners will be required to have passed GCSE Maths (minimum of a grade C or grade 4) and to have achieved a pass at GCSE Science (minimum of a grade C or grade 4), or have a suitable alternative level 2 qualification (e.g. BTEC in Applied Science). Learners who do not have these qualifications will be considered on a one-to-one basis. As part of the application process, you will be offered an interview with the course tutor.

After Your Course

Higher education courses in science subjects open up a tremendous range of opportunities including: aerospace; agriculture; automotive industries; biochemicals; computing; conservation and environmental protection; energy production; engineering and manufacturing; fisheries; food and drink industries; forensics; health; land and water management; marine protection; materials research; medical research; meteorology; mineral extraction; pharmaceuticals; product development; sustainability; telecommunications and waste management.

It is important to check with the university of your choice about eligibility for their courses and we will be able to advise you if you need further information.



The fee displayed is the course fee. Course fees are per year for full-time courses and per course for part-time courses.

Other costs may be associated with this course, e.g., kit, equipment, books, trips, etc. Financial support may be available to support you with these. See the Student Money pages for more information.

Courses fees

The current full-time & degree-level fee information is related to the 2024/25 academic year.

Level 3-6 Courses

Advanced Learning Loans are available for students aged 19 or over and studying eligible level 3, 4, 5 & 6 courses. If you are on an Access course, the loan will be written off if you complete a degree.

You may qualify for financial support to cover the cost of a Level 3 qualification if you do not already have a Level 3 qualification (this will depend on the course & your age on 31/08/24).

Please speak to Student Services for more information on course fees.


The fees displayed are for the one-year AS-Level course. If you would like to progress onto the full A-Level, please get in touch with us for the cost of the second year, as it will be different.

16-18 year olds

There are no course fees if you were aged 16-18 on 31/08/24 and are not studying at another institution.

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