Careers start here.

Your Study Options

About the course

This pathway is for those who wish to study for a Counselling and/or Psychology degree at university or undertake the Higher National Diploma at college. The Counselling Diploma programme is the most suitable route for you if you are looking to go on to study a degree in subjects such as: Psychology, Psychology with Counselling, Criminology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, Education with Psychology, Sociology, Psychology with Professional Development or other similar subjects.

What is an Access to Higher Education course? 

An Access to Higher Education course is a 1 year pre-university course that prepares adults for study at university. This course is ideal if you have been out of education for a while, planning a career change or upskill in your current job. A typical Access course is 2-3 days a week, 9.30am-3pm and are taken by students of all ages and backgrounds.


3 full days. (This equates to 2.5 days direct delivery, in addition to 0.5 enrichment and/or workshop).
Classes start at 9.30am and end at 4.30pm*

*The department recognises that a large number of students have care or parental responsibilities and makes allowances to ensure these demands can continue to be met by learners.

Entry requirements

Minimum Level 2 Functional Skills English or equivalent English qualification.

Minimum Level 1 Functional Skills Maths or equivalent Maths qualification.

If you do not meet these entry requirements don’t worry, we also offer a Level 2 Pre-Access Foundation course. Contact Us or call 01279 868100 if you would like some advice or further information about this course.

Who is it suitable for?

This course is suitable for anyone who wishes to go to university and is taken by adults aged 19+. There is no upper age limit.

How much does it cost?

The cost of this course is £3,384

You may be entitled to an Advanced Learner Loan to cover the costs of your Access course. 

Student Finance England, who are responsible for student loans will ‘write off’ any outstanding Advanced Learner Loan balances for your Access to HE course as soon as you complete a higher education course. This means you do not have to repay your Advanced Learner Loan if you progress to higher education and complete your degree programme.

You may be eligible to a Harlow College 19+ bursary to support with travel costs, childcare and course materials. 

Contact Us or call 01279 868100 to get the most up-to-date info on fees and the financial support that may be available.

Awarding body


Why study?

You will practice counselling techniques, investigate abnormal psychology such as schizophrenia and eating disorders and carry out minor psychology experiments to collect data and results.

You will also produce a project of own choosing by designing a methodology and carrying out primary research.

Where will this course take me?

Once you've completed this course you can go on to study for a Foundation Degree or Degree in Psychology and/or Counselling at a University of your choice.

Possible careers

  • Counsellor

  • Criminologist

  • Teacher

  • Educational Psychologist

  • Social Worker

  • Family Support Worker

    And many more…

Core modules

You will study a range of different modules across the programme, some focusing on your academic skills and some more subject specific, here are some examples of the types of modules you will study:

  • Study and Research Skills
  • Research Project
  • Social Psychology 
  • Counselling in Practice
  • Applied Psychology
  • Key Counselling Skills

Please note these module examples are subject to change.

How will I be assessed?

  • Essays
  • Presentations
  • Timed assessments
  • Class discussions
  • Observable assessments

Will I have to provide anything?

Academic Resources:  Pens, Paper, Files.

I'm interested. What should I do now?

Call 01279 868100 and talk to an Admissions Adviser
Ask Us a question about this course

Funding Your Course

If you're aged 19 or over and you want to study A Levels, an Access to Higher Education Diploma, or a Level 3 to 6 Vocational Qualification, you could be eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan.