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Access to HE Diploma in Teaching - Humanities Route

Level 3 Vocational
Course Code:
North Devon Campus
1 year

Want to go to university? Want a change of career? Or want a new challenge? No A levels? No problem! It is never too late to study for a degree even if you have no qualifications at all. Or you may already have some qualifications at GCSE, NVQ or BTEC but not enough to get into university. Many adults return to education to improve their career opportunities and achieve their personal goals.

Petroc is my closest college - I had already done a distance learning course and I missed interacting with other students. This Access course gave me the opportunity to study History at university, as I didn't have any A levels. My highlights have been meeting like-minded people and learning new subjects: I enjoyed the small classes, the discussions and debates, and being treated like an adult.


Access to Higher Education Diplomas enable mature students to apply for a degree programme in only one year. So if you have a career path in mind which requires a degree and you thought you could never do it - think again.

Our Access Diplomas also cater for students who have been away from studying for some time. The course will equip you with the skills, knowledge and confidence to achieve your goals, as well as providing support and encouragement throughout the year.

To succeed, you'll need to be aged 19 or over, motivated, enthusiastic, able to manage your time effectively and be ready to study. You will be part of a group of adult students who are excited about learning and are willing to work hard with other members of the group and participate.

Many people worry that they're too old to do an Access to HE course, or will feel out of place - in fact, there's no upper-age limit and there will be many other mature students on this course - just like you. All you need is to be committed to study and focused on your career choice.

This course is a Level 3 programme which enables you to progress on to a Foundation Degree or full Honours Degree at Petroc, awarded by Plymouth University, or to a BEd, BA or BSc programme at any UK university. The Access to HE Diploma in Teaching is aimed at those who are interested in teaching in the education sector (Primary or Secondary) or related fields.

Humanities route - Sociology is mandatory; you will also need to choose TWO subjects to study throughout the year from the following: History, Literary Studies, Psychology.

You will need to organise your own relevant teaching experience in a school to take place during the January to February half term (this is a mandatory aspect of the Teaching Diploma): you will need to obtain a DBS check in order to carry out your placement.

In each of your chosen level 3 subjects, you will take several modules over the year providing you with a total of 60 credits at Level 3. Depending on the subjects you choose, and can expect to study...

*Sociology: Stratification & Differentiation, Inequalities & Achievement in Education, Research Methods in Sociology (during the year you will explore issues such as power, class, gender and race in contemporary society and develop your knowledge of current affairs).
*History: Historical Sources (early modern Britain 1485-1707), Period Study (Medieval England 1066-1485, including Edward III and the Hundred Years' War), Historical Debate (Bolshevism in Russia 1894-1924), The Role of an Individual or Historical Movement
*Literary Studies: The Short Story, Appreciation of Poetry (selection), Appreciation of a Play (Death of a Salesman), Shakespearean Drama (Henry V), The Novel: Themes, Characterisation and Narrative Voice (Far from the Madding Crowd).
*Psychology: The Learning Perspective, Early Social Development, Theories of Crime, Atypical Psychology

All our Diplomas also include:
*Study Skills where you will gain valuable skills for university study such as academic writing, Harvard referencing, and effectively locating and using a range of academic sources.
*Tutorial sessions. In Tutorials we will provide guidance and support for your UCAS application for university, as well as supporting you throughout your year of study.

To pursue a teaching degree, universities require GCSE grades at C or above in English and Maths as part of the entry requirements. GCSE English and Maths are separate qualifications from the Access Diploma so, if required, we offer additional lessons for these subjects. If you don't already have a C grade or above in Maths or English at GCSE, these are currently free for students over 19. Please contact our Guidance Centre for further details. Please note that due to the amount of work involved, we strongly recommend that you only take one GCSE at the same time as the Access Diploma.
The Access Diploma is predominantly based upon continuous assessment (coursework). There will be a variety of teaching methods used throughout the course, including debates, small group exercises, on-line research, group presentations, whole-class teaching and peer assessment. You will be supported and encouraged to develop and practice the skills that will enable you to become an independent learner and fully prepare you for Higher Education. Students compile a portfolio of assessed work throughout the year, which is externally moderated at the end of the course.

In some subjects, such as Psychology, there will be in-class timed tests. Examination practice is a mandatory requirement of all Access courses. Our Diploma includes two Study Skills exams during the course to meet this requirement.

Students taking GCSE English or Maths will also have external examinations in May/June
For learners aged 19 and above.
Minimum level 2 literacy and numeracy skills. To pursue a teaching degree, universities will require GCSE grades at C or above in English and Maths as part of the entry requirements. *If you already have GCSE Maths and English, you must bring copies of your certificates with your to your interview. Basic IT skills would be helpful.

You will need to organise your own relevant teaching experience in a school to take place during the January to February half term: you will need to obtain a DBS check in order to carry out your placement.

There is no required set reading before the start of the Access Diploma course although, depending on your subject choice, you may find it useful to read about history, politics and/or current affairs in the media, or look at A level websites such as S-cool ( to find out more about the subjects you are thinking of studying.

It will also be very useful for you to research courses and universities prior to starting the course to help with your university application, which takes place in the first term.
Forget your school experience - you will be learning in a friendly, vibrant college environment.

This Access to HE Teaching Diploma course is aimed at those who are interested in pursuing a teaching career. You will follow a Humanities based route with subjects such as Literature, History, Psychology. Your classes will be engaging and enable you to be involved and assessed by a range of methods including presentations, essays, reports, case studies, debates and short in class exams.

You will explore and learn about a range of issues, for example if you choose Literacy Studies you will learn about the literary greats such as Shakespeare; in Psychology you will examine theories of early social development; in Sociology you will study aspects of education and inequalities in achievement, amongst other topics.

We offer a wide range of modules, delivered by experienced, enthusiastic staff with detailed curriculum knowledge.

This Diploma leads to degree courses in teaching as well as other degrees, for example, English, Journalism, History, Sociology, Psychology, Educational Psychology.
• There is an excellent Moodle (VLE) for the Diploma courses where you will have access to resources and additional reading, as well as extensive Learning Resources support.
• Individual computers can be booked for use in study periods.
• Our classrooms have undergone modernisation in recent years and are well-equipped with up-to-date technologies.
• The tutors are well qualified, experienced, enthusiastic and understand the needs of Access learners and provide appropriate support and guidance.
• There is also support on applying to university from specialists in our Guidance Centre.
• We have a designated common room for mature students only (19+).
Q. Do universities recognise the Access to HE Diploma?
A. The Access to HE Diploma is a national qualification and is recognised and accepted by UK universities. Many universities have policies to encourage applications from Access to HE students, who are valued for their maturity and willingness to contribute to discussions.

Q. How much does it cost?
A. You are entitled to full fee remission if the following applies to you:
• Aged 19 - 23 and studying your first full Level 3 qualification.
• Aged 19+ - find out more about the Adult Learner Loan - our Guidance Centre will be able to help you with this and any questions you may have

Applicants who take the Adult Learner Loan do not need to pay anything upfront. If you complete your Access Diploma and then go on to complete a course in Higher Education, the remaining balance of your Adult Learner Loan, including any interest on it, will be written off. You can get full information from Student Finance England.
Or you can contact our Guidance Centre for advice and information on fees.

Q. Can I get any help with childcare, or other costs?
A. Some additional help is available, dependent upon individual circumstances - please contact our Guidance Centre for advice and information.

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Access to HE Diploma in Teaching - Humanities Route
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