UCC | Mature Students – Adult Learning

Whether you are looking to improve your career prospects, sharpen your skills or get back into education, UCC offers a wide range of degrees and diplomas that can help you to succeed in your ambitions.

Choosing a course to suit your needs has never been easier and with our wide choice of full-time and part-time courses, you can balance your studies with your current work and life commitments.

We understand that returning to study can be daunting, but we are here to support you. Our welcoming campus, approachable teaching teams and small class sizes ensure that mature students can thrive within a friendly and aspirational learning community.

As a mature first year student I was a little worried about fitting in with the class, however I am pleasantly surprised at how inclusive the lessons are and how supportive the lecturers have been.Barry Keleghar, BA (Hons) Graphic Design
Access Courses

Access to Higher Education diplomas

For mature students aged 19 or over, our Access to Higher Education courses offer a programme of academic study over one year, equivalent to A Levels, leading to entry onto degree and diploma courses. Accredited by Gateway Qualifications, an authorised validating agency, our Access programmes are recognised nationally.

Access Courses
Access Courses
Your learning will be facilitated by a range of activities including: teacher input, group work, seminar presentations, research activities and personal study.

Access to Higher Education diplomas available in:

  • Health Professions
  • Science
  • Science and Maths
  • Humanities
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Social Work
The lecturers are very much student-focused. The delivery of learning is made simple.Dumisani Ncube, Access
Degree Level Progression

The Access to Higher Education Diplomas offer pathways into the following higher education courses and training;

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Health Professions

  • Nursing – Adult, Child and Mental
  • Midwifery
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Health Studies
  • Sports Studies
  • Nutrition
  • Operating Department Practice
  • Public Health
  • Sports Coaching
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Sports Psychology
  • Health and Social Care
  • Teaching

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Humanities and Social Sciences

  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Criminology
  • Early Childhood Studies
  • Early Years
  • Youth Studies
  • Education Studies
  • Health and Social Care
  • Teaching

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Science

  • Bioscience
  • Sports Science
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Marine Biology
  • Animal Science
  • Microbiology
  • Zoology
  • Biomedical Science
  • Physiotherapy
  • Dietetics
  • Nutrition
  • Nutrition and Human Health
  • Forensic Science
  • Paramedic Science
  • Genetics
  • Diagnostic Radiography
  • Therapeutic Radiography
  • Pharmacy
  • Biochemistry
  • Biological Science
  • Teaching
  • Material science

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Social work and related professions

  • Social Work
  • Counselling

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Humanities

  • English Language
  • English Literature
  • History
  • Creative Writing
  • Law
  • Teaching
  • Business and Management
  • Journalism
  • Human Rights
  • Education Studies
  • Archaeology
  • Social Work

Access to Higher Education Diploma – Science and Maths

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Computer Science
  • Computer Games Design
  • Construction
  • Software Engineering
  • Physics
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Aeronautical Engineering
  • Teaching
Stepping-stones to degree programmes

Many of our higher education programmes offer stepping stones to full Honours degrees in the form of a one year (Certificate of Higher Education) or two year (Foundation degree) programmes.

Art and Design Foundation Year

This is a two-year, part-time higher education course for mature learners who would like to refresh or develop their skills before going on to further study in art and design at degree level.

Entry requirements

Applicants for the Access to Higher Education Diploma must be aged 19 years old or over at enrolment and will require a minimum of Level 2 Maths and English.

Depending on the specific entry requirements of your chosen university programme, you may need GCSE Maths, English or Science at Grade C (4) or above.

You will be required to attend an interview. At interview please bring in the email correspondence you have had with the universities you are intending to apply to, providing such information as the required GCSE Maths and English/Level 2 qualifications. Please note that many degree courses have a GCSE Maths and/or English and/or Science requirement, although some will be satisfied with a Level 2 Functional Skills in these subjects.