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Access to Higher Education Diploma (Health Sciences)

Want to improve your career prospects in healthcare but don’t have the formal entry requirements needed? No problem. The Pre-University Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health Sciences can help you with that.

Course overview

Start your journey into health sciences

If you’re thinking about a career in healthcare but you don’t have the formal entry requirements needed to apply for university level of study, an Access to Higher Education Diploma Health Sciences, might just be the thing for you. This year-long, part-time course can get you into higher education and on the ladder to working in a whole variety of careers, such as chiropractic, medicine, physiotherapy, nursing, exercise science, sport science, psychology, radiography, osteopathy and nutrition.

The course is the ideal way for students who don’t have the traditional A-level or Level 3 qualifications, to gain the knowledge, skills and the abilities required to get into university level study. The course is delivered at AECC University College at our on-site outpatient clinic and imaging centres on Friday, Saturday and Sunday making it flexible to fit around your other commitments.

Aimed at adult learners, this Access to HE diploma in Health sciences, course has been cleverly designed to be as flexible as possible – so, for example, you could also study English and Maths GCSE equivalent alongside your studies at a separate institution, work part time or continue your children or caring commitments.

Learn about the human body through biology, chemistry, physics, anatomy, psychology and contemporary healthcare initiatives. Our academic staff will get you involved in the classroom, the lab, and even the on-site clinics, so expect to be kept on your toes.

Within the course details, we’ve also included stories from three AECC University College alumni who changed their career completely by taking this Access to HE Diploma - Health Sciences course.  If you have any questions, please get in touch with our friendly admissions team on the form below.



This course is CAVA accredited. The Cambridge Access Validating Agency designs and validates Access to Higher Education Diplomas. Their mission is to facilitate fair access and aid social mobility by validating relevant and high quality Access to HE provision that will increase the opportunities for non-traditional learners to study at university.

How do I apply?

Applications for 2021 to the Access to HE Diploma (Health Sciences) course are now open. You will need to provide your educational history, a personal statement and a satisfactory reference.

For general questions on Access to HE Diploma (Health Sciences) entry requirements or to register your interest in the course please use the contact form below.

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Key Information

Course title:
Access to Higher Education Diploma (Health Sciences)
HE Diploma
September - July ( 1 year)
Study mode:
Part-Time (Friday, Saturday, Sunday)
AECC University College

Course leader

Course Leader Image

Hazel Jensen

MChiro, PGCert - Lecturer (Clinical Sciences) and Access to HE Health Sciences Programme Leader

Hazel is the Course Leader for Master of Chiropractic - MChiro (Hons). In addition, she is involved in private chiropractic practice.

View full bio

Course details

The Access to HE Diploma in Health Sciences course aims to develop you as a learner and a professional. To expose you to how university level healthcare courses are run, we teach you in a variety of ways including workshops, lectures, practical laboratory work, online content, group work and flipped classrooms.

You will learn to write academically and utilise resources and references to become an independent learner. We have designed our teaching so you have frequent hand-in dates and assessments, so there are no end-of-year peaks in workload. The assessments we set are more diverse than other Level 3 courses, and we use presentations, hold debates, create posters, use self-critiques and set problem-solving coursework alongside the more traditional exams.

We believe it’s important to promote self-reflection and wellness in our students by offering small group tutorials, personal tutoring and mentorship programmes, and our onsite Student Services team are on hand to aid you with additional learning requirements, counselling and advice.

We also believe work-experience through placements can shape who you are as a health professional, helping you gain skills from outside the classroom. The course therefore includes a placement at one of our clinics or in a profession of interest.

This Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health Sciences course helps you prepare for a higher level of study. By studying alongside our undergraduates and Masters students, you’ll be exposed to a more mature, focused environment than that at a Further Education college. This course helps you get to grips with the culture of a university and easily bridge any gaps to studying at a higher level. 

Add to your experience our years of educational delivery in health science and healthcare courses and you’ll see why this Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health Sciences is a great choice for you.

Access teaching - Provisional Calendar 2021-22

Student Case Studies

Tallulah Webb took our Access course in 2018 to gain the qualifications she needed. She says: “I had wanted to study Nursing for a long time, but didn’t have the right A-Levels. The Access course allowed me to study whilst I was working four days a week too. I loved it and it made the transition into my first year of Nursing really easy.”  Read Tallulah's story here.

Sarit Sirinan took the course in 2012 and is now a Doctor of Chiropractic. He says: “When I started studying on the Access course, I hadn’t been in education for about 12 years. I was working for my parents, running our family supermarket, but I wanted to follow a different career path in healthcare. This course enabled me to totally change my career and my life – and I haven’t looked back.”
Read Sarit’s story here.


Unit breakdown

"Thanks to the course being over the weekend I could balance my life without having to commit to a tedious evening course after work."

Entry Requirements

This Access to HE Diploma - Health Sciences course attracts students from all walks of life, from those with no formal qualifications to some who have completed a degree previously but now wish to change careers. Whatever your background, we’ll work with you to build your skill-set and increase your confidence in your future prospects.

Many university courses ask for GCSE or equivalent in maths and science, but if you don’t have this the flexibility our course allows you to work on these externally alongside your Access to HE Health Science Diploma. We consider all applications on an individual basis and will consider all ages and backgrounds. Get in touch with us, we would love to hear from you.

Send your enquiry to our admissions team on the form below or head straight over to apply.


Please note that we are not in a position to sponsor any students who require a Student visa to study in the UK for this course, and therefore cannot consider an application from such students. 

For more information about our admissions policies and procedures, including our Admissions Complaints and Appeals Policy, please click here


Course Fees

There are a lot of things to consider when applying to university, including course fees.

The tuition fees for the Access to Higher Education Diploma - Health Sciences for 2021 entry are £2,010.

The fees are payable in full at the commencement of the autumn term in September or in three payments.

If payment is via instalments, the first payment is due September 2021, second payment January 2022, and third in April 2022. 

For Access to Higher Education Diploma - Health Sciences fee & payment information 2021/22 please read our tuition fee policy.

Please note that this course is not eligible for the Advanced Learner Loan.

Visit our student finance pages for more information on:

Additional Costs

Fees and funding

You may also need to think about a place to stay if you don’t live locally. Visit our accommodation page where you’ll find lots of guest houses, hotels, or places to rent in Bournemouth.

If you are interested in applying for the Access to Higher Education Diploma (Health Sciences), attend one of our open days or register your interest below and we will remind you of our open days and the application deadline date. 

Author Image During the Access course we all got to where we wanted to - which really helped. Dan Sullivan, Access to HE and Master of Chiropractic, Class of 2015

Register your interest in Access to HE Diploma (Health Sciences) and/or send an enquiry on the form below. Please note, an asterisk(*) denotes a required field.

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