Access to Higher Education Diploma

Find your way into healthcare with an Access to Higher Education Diploma.

Course overview

If you’re thinking about a career in healthcare and you don’t know where to start, an Access to Higher Education Diploma might just be the thing for you. This year long course gets you on the ladder to working in a whole variety of careers, such as chiropractic, medicine, physiotherapy, nursing, exercise science, osteopathy, nutrition and many more. Learn about the human body through biology, chemistry, physics, anatomy and psychology. Our academic staff will get you involved in the classroom, the lab, and even the clinic, so expect to be kept on your toes.

Our team of clinicians and scientists use their own experience to make sure the course is relevant to you and your future training. You don’t have to give up your day job just yet as you’ll join us part-time on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays at the AECC University College and at our on-site outpatient clinic and imaging centres. Did we mention that this Access to Higher Education Diploma is helping you prepare for a higher level of study? You’ll get to grips with the culture of a university and easily bridge any gaps. Add to this over 50 years of experience in health science and healthcare courses and you’ll see why this Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health Sciences is a great choice.



Key Information

Course title:
Access to Higher Education Diploma (Health Sciences)
HE Diploma
September - July
Study mode:
AECC University College

Course leader

Philip Dewhurst

BSc (Hons), MChiro, MSc, DC, PGCert, FRCC - Lecturer (Clinical Sciences)

Philip is the Programme Leader for the Access to Higher Education Diploma as well as unit leader for a number of units across the chiropractic and exercise science degrees. In addition he is involved with teaching anatomy on a number of external courses using the AECC University College Prosection facilities. He is enrolled on a professional doctorate in education (Ed.D) with the University of Reading and is currently engaged in a number of education focused research projects.

Course details

Looking for course details and structure? You’re in the right place. During your Access to Higher Education in Health Sciences Diploma you’ll spend time with our experienced academic staff in the classroom and in the lab, getting involved in group discussions, case scenarios, and practical classes. Expect to learn about biological science and health studies, chemistry and physics, psychology, research and ethics complete with access to our on-site facilities. You can use these facilities at any time you like, and feel free to schedule time with your tutors whenever you need.

This is a part-time course, run at weekends between September and July on Fridays (9am - 5pm), Saturdays (9am - 5pm), and Sundays (9am - 1pm). But your learning doesn’t have to stop there. Spending an extra 10 - 15 hours a week on associated reading and assessments will make all the difference to your course. 

The Access to Higher Education in Health Sciences course is split into four subject areas that cover various units and work based placement. The all important assessments come in many forms.

If you would like to know the subject areas of the course or how the course is assessed, refer to the the Unit Breakdown section.

If you’re worried about any of the work, just remember, you’re not alone - your personal tutor is there to help you with your studies and any pastoral support you may need. We also have additional study and language support available within our Learning Services.

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

Applications for the Access to Higher Education Diploma will open in January 2018. The application deadline is 31st August 2018.  In the meantime please take a look at our entry requirements and register your interest in this foundation course below.

It’s okay if you don’t have any formal qualifications - we developed this course to help you get into a career in Health Sciences without them. The main thing that we ask for is GCSE Mathematics grade C and GCSE English language grade C (or acceptable equivalents). If you know what course or career you want to move on to, make sure you check what grades or diplomas you’ll need so you know you’re on the right track. Fill out our application form and join us at the college for an interview.

If English is not your first language we’d be looking for a qualification in one of the following:

  • IELTS overall score of 6.0 with no less than 5.5 in each section
  • TOEFL overall score of 79 with minimum scores of 17 in writing and listening, 18 in reading and 20 in speaking

We may be able to consider other English language qualifications, so call or email our Admissions team and they will be happy to help. Try to book your language tests as early in the year as you can, just in case re-sits are needed. We won’t be able to offer you a place on the course unless all conditions are met.

As this Access to Higher Education in Health Sciences course is part-time, this unfortunately isn’t available to non-EEA nationals or anyone that would require a student visa to study in the UK. 

Are there any other requirements?

There’s a few more things we need to ask for:

  • Applicants must be aged 19 or older on the 1 September in the year their Diploma starts.


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 for 2018 entry is £1,550. If it’s easier, we are happy to take this payment in two instalments. You’re able to pay by:

  • Cash
  • Cheque
  • Credit/Debit Card
  • Bank transfer

We’ll send more information about payment and fees in the summer before your enrolment, but if you have any questions now, you can speak with our Finance department.

There are a few extras you’ll be needing for your course - including placement polo shirts if you’re planning on attending placements at the AECC University College Chiropractic Clinic and, of course, any recommended textbooks. 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.

Register your interest and receive updates on Access to HE (Health Sciences)

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