NQ 6 Health & Social Care (Access to Nursing) NC

What is special about this course?

This Health Care full time course has been developed for students hoping to enter a career in Health  Care and in particular Nursing.

This stimulating course provides students with the opportunity to study health and social care related subjects at Higher level.

Students enjoy a mixed course of theory and practice both in college and in a placement to suit their chosen specialism.

Access to Nursing courses are designed to enable students to gain the necessary qualifications to progress to university to study a degree in nursing.  These courses are suitable for school leavers who require top up qualifications and for mature students who have been out of education for a while.

Successful completion of this course will allow you to apply to study on the BSc Nursing at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI).


Entry requirements

Students wishing to progress to Nursing must have a minimum of 1 higher (preferably English or Biology/Human Biology) prior to accessing this course. 

The course is taught through a mixture of college and work placement experiences. You will attend placement two days a week and are required to complete a variety of projects and log books to demonstrate their ability to relate theory to practice.

Access to Nursing at UHI Orkney

The student will study a number of care focussed modules as well as achieving up to two highers (depending on their qualifications on entry).  Students will also access a placement in a health care setting 2 days per week.

How will I study my course?

  • Full Time
  • Part Time
  • Vocational Pathway

The course is taught through a mixture of class-room based lectures and tutorials in College and by using on-line VLE support materials.


How long will my course last?

1 year full time
2 years part time

Where can I study my course?

    • UHI Orkney, Kirkwall

Start date



Full time

If you are studying a full time Further Education course (NCs, NQs etc.) the College claims your fees from the Scottish Funding Council for students who are under 18 on the first day of the course. Students over the age of 18 on the first day of the course have to apply to Orkney Islands Council (OIC) for a tuition fees bursary.

Information on the tuition fees bursary is available on the OIC website.

Part time

Normally you are responsible for your course fees but if you are in receipt of certain benefits you may be eligible for a Part Time Course Fee Waiver. Not all part-time courses at Orkney College UHI are covered by the Fee Waiver Scheme and only certain benefits are acceptable as a basis for a Fee Waiver. Please contact the college to enquire.

If you are eligible, you may be entitled to an ILA of up to £200 a year towards a course.

What can I do on completion of my course?

This course can lead to entry on the following vocational courses HNC Social Services, SVQ 2 & 3 in Social services and health care.  Please note students who wish to use this course to progress to a degree in Nursing will be required to have or be working towards achieving 2 more highers.  Further guidance can be given regarding this on application.

Access to Nursing at UHI Orkney

Students who successfully complete this access course, will be given support to apply to universities throughout Scotland for a degree in Nursing.  Students could also progress to HNC Social Services and/or SVQ 3 in Health & Social Care.

Successful completion of this course will allow you to apply to study on the BSc Nursing at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI).

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for NQ 6 Health & Social Care (Access to Nursing) NC

I want to start in 2024/25

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at Orkney College UHI. Orkney College UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.