Access to HE
Reading, RG1 4HJ
New and returning learners:
Please note that due to special measures we have put in place to make our sites COVID safe, we are asking all learners to enrol with us online. If you are unable to do so we can support you over the phone, simply call 0800 612 6008. Please do not enter our college sites without a prior appointment as we are managing the number of people on site at any time to comply with social distancing measures.
See information about the measures we are taking to keep learners safe while on campus.
The Access to HE: Social Work and Counselling Level 3 Diploma pathway provides a route into a range of degree courses.
An Access course is for mature students (19+) who have been out of full-time education for one or more years and would like to go on to higher education but do not have the formal qualifications needed.
The Access to HE: Social Work and Counselling Level 3 Diploma pathway will offer a range of relevant, progressive and stimulating subjects including sociological perspectives, international relations and communication studies.
The subjects will give insight into the social life of human groups and individuals, and examine the causes and consequences of social change in the modern world.
What I'll learn
You will study sociology and social policy plus communication studies (for the day group) or psychology (for the evening group).
Sociology will provide you with a firm understanding of society and how it operates. In Social Policy, we shall look at the Government policies which guide the work of social workers. One of the most important aspects of a social worker is the ability to understand clients and communicate with them and for them and students will find either communication studies or psychology helps with their clients.
As well as developing subject knowledge you will improve your communication, personal and study skills through a common core programme that also provides one-to-one tutorial support.
There will be the opportunity to gain GCSE maths and English as part of your programme, which is a requirement for a Social Work degree.
You will be assigned a personal tutor who will agree performance targets with you and support you to achieve these targets. Your tutor is also the first port of call for any pastoral issues.
Our committed team of staff and careers specialists will also guide and support you with your higher education choices and applications. Almost all our Access students progress to higher education. You will benefit from socialising in an educational environment and working collaboratively on projects. All of this is excellent preparation for higher education.
How I'll learn
You will learn through a variety of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Credits are gained for a variety of tasks such as essays, reports, oral presentations and timed assessments.
In this pathway there is a very strong emphasis on working with others and developing effective communication skills.
You will regularly participate in a variety of group activities including group assessments. If you do not already have relevant work experience you will be encouraged and expected to seek a voluntary placement to support your higher education application.
How I'll be assessed
Assessment on this programme is through a combination of exams (approximately 30%) and coursework (approximately 70%).
Assessments are a mixture of:
- structured questions
Applicants must be over 19 and have been out of full-time education for a year.
No specific qualifications are asked for, however a GCSE grade 4 (C) in English or maths would be beneficial.
You will have a numeracy and literacy assessment to check your suitability to study at Level 3.
If you are successful at your initial assessment, you will also be invited in for an interview where you will need to bring with you a portfolio of your work to date, demonstrate that you have a realistic career goal in mind and the motivation to achieve.
Some degrees require that you have some relevant paid or voluntary work experience and this will also be checked at interview. Applicants are strongly advised to check degree entry requirements with prospective universities before applying.
There is a wide range of support available at the college for students, including financial support.
How to Apply
You can apply for this programme online. Click on APPLY NOW and follow the steps below:
- Register for our online service and verify your account
- Log in to our website and click APPLY NOW on your chosen programme’s page to complete your application
As part of your application, you will be asked to provide us with your contact details, how your chosen programme fits with your future plans and if you require any extra support (for example, because of a disability, medical condition, learning or language support needs).
Please include full details of your qualifications from your own country, as well as details of any English Language tests you have taken.
Printed application forms are also available.
Please contact our Careers team if you need advice and guidance to help you choose the right programme for you.