Course Type / Attendance
Award to be received
Higher National Certificate
Who is this course for?
This course is for those who have a Level 3 Science qualification, are employed in a Biology related industry and are looking to improve their practical skills and knowledge.
What do you need to apply for the course?
You will need to be over 18 and have a relevant level 3 qualification. You must also have a minimum of 32 UCAS points and GCSE Mathematics and English Language at grade C or above, or an equivalent.
We also welcome applications from those with relevant industrial experience.
What are the key things you'll learn?
The course lays a firm foundation for those progressing to study biology at higher levels and for employees working in the biological industry. The structure of a cell, how the cell functions, divides, differentiates and adopts a position in order to perform a specialist role in the multicellular organism is studied. Learners also develop skills necessary for growing cells in culture.
The structure of the main physiological systems and how they function together to utilise nutrients and remove waste products effectively is covered.
An understanding of the processes responsible for the maintenance, transmission and expression of genetic information at a molecular level is developed. There is a strong emphasis on practical skills and data analysis commonly used in biology.
A work-based investigation involving a team working on a common project with each individual carrying out a specific role and contributing key information to the final outcome is another key feature of the programme.
Each of the units listed below is worth 15 credits, with the entire HNC totalling 120 credits. All units are mandatory.
Our teaching is informed by current practice and units may change periodically to reflect developments in the sector.
Physiology of Cellular Systems in Animals
Chemistry for Applied Biology
Analysis of Scientific Data & Information
Laboratory Techniques for Applied Biology
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Work Based Investigation
Biochemistry of Macromolecules and Metabolic Pathways
The course runs on a Wednesday from 9:00 to 5pm. Detailed timetables are available at enrolment.
How you will learn
You will be taught through a combination of lectures, workshops, seminars and practical sessions. Seminars enable you to discuss and develop your understanding of topics.
Indicative class size 12.
When not attending lectures, seminars and practical sessions or other timetabled session you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research, preparing coursework assignment and presentations. Your independent learning is supported by a range of facilities including the learning centre and the college virtual learning environment (VLE).
Your overall weekly workload consists of 7 hours of class contact time and approximately 10 hours of independent learning and assignment activity, with each 15 credit unit taken equating to a total study time of around 150 hours.
Our HE Academic Support Tutor provides help in the following areas:
- Study skills (including reading, writing, note-taking and presentation skills)
- Written English (including punctuation and grammatical accuracy)
- Academic writing (including how to reference)
- Research skills (in conjunction with the learning centres)
- Critical thinking and understanding arguments
- Revision, assessment and examination skills (including time management)
You will be taught by an experienced teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team chemists and mathematicians with extensive teaching and industrial experience. Our teaching is informed by the relevant practice within the sector and all of our academic staff have a teaching qualification.
Each unit is continuously assessed via coursework. This includes laboratory reports, practical skills assessments, oral presentations, essays and research projects.
There are no summative assessments or end of unit examinations.
You will receive feedback on all practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module tutor.
We aim to provide you with feedback within 10 working days of hand-in (practice assessments) and 20 working days of hand-in (formal coursework assessment).
Where could this course take you?
After successfully completing this course you could progress onto the Level 5 Biological Science for Industry qualification.
Typical salaries for an Industrial Biologist are £14,000 to £35,000
Senior scientists can earn over £50,000.
What costs will you incur?
Fees for September 2018
£2,300 per year
The following course-related costs are included in the fees:
- Annual £10 printing allowance
- Loan of equipment required for modules
For more information on Student Finance please go to our HE Finance page