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Higher Education
Study Options and Programmes

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Higher Education Programmes

Whatever course area you choose to study, you will need to consider what type of programme will best suit the way you prefer to learn, and your chosen career route. The following options are available to you in most course areas:

Access Courses +

These programmes will prepare you for entry to degree programmes. Successful completion of an Access to Higher Education programme will enable you to apply for a place on a degree level programme and guarantees an interview for specific degrees here at Accrington and Rossendale College.

Foundation Degrees, HNCs and HNDs +

These are university-level programmes designed to improve your career prospects and earning potential. Successful completion will allow you to top up with further study (usually one year) to a full honours degree or enter employment.

Our programmes can be accessed on a full or part- time basis. The courses are usually taken over two years on a full-time basis and longer (typically three years) for part-time study.

Honours Degrees +

You can study towards degree programmes on a full or part-time basis.

Full-time courses are typically taken over three years. Part-time courses can be taken over a longer period of time.

Continuous Professional Development +

In selected programme areas we offer the opportunity to study just part of an undergraduate programme that you need to progress in your career.

Look out for our special workshops and conferences run throughout the year.

Below are a few examples:

  • Equality and diversity (Level 3)
  • Preparing for the mentoring role (Level 3)
  • Internally assure the quality of assessment  (Level 4)
  • Understanding and managing behaviours in a learning environment (Level 4)
  • Developing, using and organising resources within the Lifelong Learning sector (Level 5)
  • Literacy and the Learners (Level 5)
Courses: Validation, Approval and Periodic Review +

As new courses are developed, they go through rigorous approval processes to ensure that they meet the needs of students, employers and other stakeholders. Additionally, all courses undergo periodic reviews to ensure their continuing currency and quality. These processes are managed through planned schedules of approval and review.  The detail of these processes varies slightly between awarding bodies and consequently the terminology used also varies, but their substance is very similar across the whole Higher Education sector.

New courses awaiting approval are shown as ‘subject to’ followed by the terminology used by the relevant awarding body.  This is because some detail of the course may be subject to change and fuller details may not yet be available.  As soon as the new award is validated or approved full details are provided through the detailed Programme Specification being made available through the course webpages.  In the very unlikely event of a new course not being approved, applicants would be contacted, and the College would work with them to identify alternative options within the College, or elsewhere.

Courses going through periodic review could change slightly but overall aims will remain unchanged and there would only be minor updates to content and/or structure. As such, the existing Programme Specification provides a reasonable reflection of the course and an updated version will be made available through the course webpages after each periodic review event.

Occasionally courses go through a more substantial review process, often called revalidation or reapproval, meaning that the course (aims and content) may change significantly.  In such cases, fuller detail of the revised course may not be available but as soon as the programme is revalidated / reapproved, the new Programme Specification will be made available through the course webpages.

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