What is HE?
HE Stands for Higher Education and refers to higher-level or university-level courses. There are a range of uni-level qualifications so review these to see which type of qualification would be best for you.
We offer an extensive range of university-level qualifications, some are run directly, and some are run in partnership with several Welsh universities. Many of our courses are vocational qualifications developed in consultation with employers, to equip you with the skills and knowledge that employers require and to make the progression into employment easier.
We know that finding the right course can be overwhelming, so here’s a quick guide to the qualifications that we offer, to make your decision a little easier. Don’t know if you’re ready to commit to a 3-year degree? Don’t worry! We have several one or two-year courses available that are standalone qualifications or can be used to build toward a degree!
Certificate/Diploma of Higher Education (CertHE/DipHE)
A CertHE is equivalent to the first year or level 4 of a degree programme, while a DipHE is equivalent to the first two years or levels 4 and 5 of a degree. Combining practical experience with theoretical knowledge makes these qualifications highly valued by employers. You can progress from a CertHE to a DipHE and from a DipHE to a top-up for a full BSc or BA Honours Degree.
Higher National Certificate (HNC) and Higher National Diploma (HND)
Similar to the CertHE and DipHE. The HNC is equivalent to the first year or level 4 of a degree programme and a HND is equivalent to the first two years or levels 4 and 5 of a degree programme. These programmes combine theory and practical experience and are highly valued by employers. You can progress from a HNC to a HND, and from a HND to a top-up degree such as a BA (Hons).
Foundation Degree (FdSc/FdA)
A foundation degree is also equivalent to the first two years or levels 4 and 5 of a degree. Foundation degrees focus on a particular job or profession and are intended to increase the professional and technical skills of current or potential staff within a profession. You can progress from a foundation degree onto a top-up for a full BSc Honours Degree.
Honours Degrees (BA, BSc, BEng)
We are proud to deliver BA Honours (Bachelor of Arts), BSc Honours (Bachelor of Science) and BEng Honours (Bachelor of Engineering) degrees in partnership with our awarding institutions. Depending on the subject you would like to study, there are a range of options available including standard three-year degrees or one-year top-up options if you already have a HND, Foundation degree, or DipHE.
We also offer degree apprenticeships where you study in college for one day a week and are employed in a role relevant to your studies for the rest of the week. After gaining an honours degree you could go on to study a master’s qualification at a university, consider the graduate teaching qualification at NPTC Group, or go into graduate employment.
Professional Certificate in Education/Professional Graduate Certificate in Education in Post Compulsory Education and Training (PCE/PGCE PCET)
Our PCE and PGCE PCET courses are designed to teach you how to teach! If you’re keen to start a career in teaching students ages 16+, then our PCE or PGCE PCET could be right for you.
Post-compulsory education includes all forms of education of students post 16. (I.e. anything that is not primary or secondary education. This includes colleges, universities, apprenticeships and work-based learning to name a few.)
During the course, you will have a placement, where you will get a first-hand, post-16 teaching experience.
If you have a degree in the subject you want to teach, then you can apply for our Professional Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE PCET) course.
But if you don’t, that’s no problem! You can apply to our Professional Certificate in Education (PCE PCET) course with a level 3 (college-level) qualification in the subject area you’d like to teach.
Entry requirements for our courses will be listed on each course page, however, if your qualifications do not meet the entry requirements, we would still encourage you to apply for the course you’re interested in, as many of our courses will consider mature learners based on their experience rather than their qualifications.
If you aren’t sure whether you’re ready for a HE course with us yet, we also offer a range of Access and Pre-Access to Higher Education programmes. Click the button below to find out more.
Our higher education programmes are delivered in collaboration with four awarding partners:
University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD)
The University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) was formed in 2010 through the merger of the University of Wales Lampeter and Trinity University College Carmarthen, under Lampeter’s Royal Charter of 1828. In 2013, Swansea Metropolitan University became part of UWTSD.
University of South Wales (USW)
The University of South Wales is a diverse academic community of many nations and beliefs, brought together by a shared commitment to the transformation of lives through knowledge and education. USW states that:
“Whether we are educating graduates for the changing world of work and industry, or providing policy advice to government, pushing the boundaries of applied research or using those discoveries to address the great choices that face our society, we want our University to add value to our communities, our economy, and most fundamentally, to the lives of those who study here.”
Wrexham Glyndŵr University (WGU)
Established in 2008 Wrexham Glyndŵr University plays an active role in its community by supporting businesses and organisations in the region through research and through collaborative projects and courses tailored to provide students with the knowledge and understanding to excel within their chosen industry.
Pearson Higher National qualifications have been co-designed with industry, employers and professional bodies. This allows Pearson qualifications to provide students with the skills and knowledge their industry is looking for. Every year, over 100,000 students from over 60 countries around the world, are studying a Pearson Higher National qualification and finding success in both further study and employment.
We offer Pearson Higher National Certificates and Diplomas (HNCs and HNDs) in a range of subjects, including Agriculture, Computing, Construction, Engineering, Music, Public Services, and Sport.
“It’s convenient, it’s literally right on my doorstep and they are so flexible, with me having kids I was unsure about how it would work but the lecturers were on hand at all times allowing me to balance my home life and work.”
“Because of the smaller groups you get so much more out of the course, there is more chance to sit down with your lecturers on a regular basis and gain more feedback.”
“I completed a HND in Business a few years ago, whilst working full-time. It was great that you could do it over two days and all the lecturers were very supportive and friendly and went out of their way to help. Going back to college when you’re not 18 anymore is quite daunting but they put me at ease and I enjoyed my 2 years. I would recommend anyone who wants to return to education to go for it. I now own my own business so it certainly helped doing the HND!”
“If it wasn’t for NPTC Group of Colleges offering degrees in partnership with USW, I don’t think I would have ever returned to education. I had always wanted to be a teacher and thought I had lost that chance.
Returning to education after ten years was daunting, but with the college it was small classes, and the lecturers are amazing and so supportive.
I studied for a full-time degree, but what’s fantastic about studying on a college campus, is that they compact the lectures into two full days, so I could fit studying around my job and family life.
Anyone thinking of going back to education, it’s never too late, and it’s surprising how much help and support is out there.
Now I have my degree, I’m ready to take the final step and go to University to complete my PGCE.
I cannot recommend NPTC Group of Colleges highly enough, they have truly been amazing and provided me with a fantastic education!”
A full list of our Higher Education courses including Access to Higher Education is below. Please use the search facility to find the higher education course for you or browse our subject areas by clicking on the images below.