Higher National Certificates and Higher National Diplomas

Higher National Certificates (HNCs) and Higher National Diplomas (HNDs) are work-related, or vocational, higher education qualifications. They are specialist technical courses that will help you gain the skills, knowledge and behaviours you need for employment within your chosen field or to prepare you for further study.

Level 4 and Level 5 qualifications respectively, these programmes are suitable for learners who want a more practical, employer-directed programme of study. They focus on learning by implementation, providing skills that can be applied to a particular job or specialism. They are highly valued by employers and in some instances can also count towards membership of professional bodies and organisations.

A HNC will take about one year to complete full-time and around 18 months to two years when studied part-time, whilst a full-time HND will usually take two years to complete and proportionally longer when taken part-time.

Subjects available

We offer HNCs and HNDs in the following subject areas:

  • Construction (building services engineering)
  • Electrical and mechanical engineering
  • Sport and exercise science

Where they can lead

Because HNCs and HNDs are designed to give you the skills for a particular field of work, they can both lead in to a career or facilitate progress within a current career in order to gain professional status or recognition.

HNCs can allow entry into the second year of a degree, while HNDs can allow entry into the second or third year.

HNCBuilding Services Engineering
HNC/DEngineering (Electrical and Electronic)
HNC/DMechanical Engineering

Other qualifications

Diploma of Higher Education

Diplomas of Higher Education are similar to HNDs. They are accredited professional qualifications and are highly respected by employers both in the UK and overseas. They usually take two years to complete, and many learners subsequently convert their Higher Education Diploma to a degree with an extra year of study.

DipHEPerson-centred Counselling