Home » Access to Higher Education

Do you want to study for a degree but don’t think you have the right qualifications? Are you ready for a new career challenge?

An Access to Higher Education Diploma is the ideal way for ADULT students without traditional A levels or Level 3 qualifications to qualify for entry to a degree or other higher education course.

If you are aged 24 and over, you can take out a loan from the Student Loans Company to cover the cost of your course – and if you go on to complete a degree, the 24+ loan will be written off!

The Access qualification is a popular, nationally recognised qualification designed to provide adult students with the skills they need to apply for courses at universities.

Access Diplomas are Level 3 courses specifically tailored toward the adult learner. South Downs College is proud to be offering QAA credit based Access to Higher Education Diplomas validated by LASER in a variety of qualification pathways.

For many Access pathways you will need to have a minimum of grade C in GCSE English and Maths but some require other/different GCSE qualifications at grade C.

You can find out more information about our range of Access to Higher Education courses can be found here.

If you don’t have the required grades to support your Access to Higher Education application, please contact the Skills for Life team who can give you information about studying to achieve GCSE English and Maths in your spare time.

24+ Advanced Learning Loan


Aged 24 or over and thinking about an Access to Higher Education course?


If you’re starting an Access course on or after 1 August 2014 you may qualify for a 24+ Advanced Learning Loan. These loans help you to pay the tuition fees charged by colleges and training providers.

Most learners aged 24 and over, studying at Level 3 and above, will qualify for these new loans from the UK government. Your household income isn’t taken into account and there is no credit check when you apply. You won’t have to pay anything back until your income is over £21,000 a year, and if you go on to complete a degree, your 24+ loan will be completely written off!

South Downs College Cookie Warning Cookies are enabled on this site to enhance your browsing experience and usability.