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Pearson BTEC Level 4 HNC Healthcare Practice for England

Course Structure

The purpose of Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Healthcare Practice for England is to develop students as professional, self-reflecting individuals able to meet the demands of employers in the healthcare sector and adapt to a constantly changing world. The qualifications aim to widen access to higher education and enhance the career prospects of those who undertake them. A key progression path for HNC learners is to HND, depending on the match of the Pearson BTEC Higher National units to the degree programme in question.

 The objectives of the Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Healthcare Practice for England are as follows:

 ● To equip students with the Healthcare Practice skills, knowledge and the understanding necessary to achieve high performance in the global health and social care environment

● To provide education and training for a range of careers in healthcare, including healthcare assistant practitioner roles in a range of settings, nursing assistant/auxiliary roles, care navigation, planning and assessment roles as well as roles in public health, health promotion and non-clinical healthcare supervisory or lower management

● To provide insight and understanding into the diversity of roles within the healthcare sector, recognising the importance of collaboration at all levels

● To equip students with knowledge and understanding of culturally diverse organisations, cross-cultural issues, diversity and values

● To provide opportunities for students to enter or progress in employment in healthcare, or progress to higher education qualifications such as an Honours degree in Nursing, Public Health, Healthcare Administration or a related area

● To provide opportunities for students to develop the skills, techniques and personal attributes essential for successful working lives

● To support students to understand the local, regional and global context of healthcare practice, management and health promotion and, for those students with a global outlook, to aspire to international career pathways

● To provide students with opportunities to address contemporary health and care issues facing the sector, and society at large, with particular emphasis on integrated and compassionate care, and person-centred approaches to providing healthcare to individuals across their lifespan

● To provide opportunities for students to achieve a nationally-recognised a professional qualification within their chosen area of specialisation

● To offer students the chance of career progression in their chosen field, with particular emphasis on achieving management-level positions, professional recognition and beyond

● To allow flexibility of study and to meet local or specialist needs

● To offer a balance between employability skills and the knowledge essential for students with entrepreneurial, employment or academic aspirations

● To provide students with opportunities to engage in an industry-recognised apprenticeship scheme that aligns with their employer’s needs and their own career aspirations

● To provide students with the context in which to consider professional ethics and their relation to personal, professional and statutory responsibilities within the industry.

The HNC consists of the Level 4 Higher National Certificate (120 credits) via one of the four corresponding specialist pathways:

● Public Health and Health Promotion

● Healthcare Management

● Healthcare Assistant Practitioner

● Nursing

Or a general pathway: Integrated Health and Social Care.

At DGHE all students in Year 1 are registered for Integrated Health and Social Care, and subject to availability in Year 2 may then opt to switch to one of the other specialist pathways. Note: For 2018 only the Integrated and Management pathways will be available.


Integrated Health and Social Care Pathway


Pearson BTEC Level 4 Higher National Certificate in Healthcare Practice for England (Integrated Health and Social Care and Healthcare Management Pathways) 




Unit 1: Law, Policy and Ethical Practice in Health and Social Care 


Unit 2: Demonstrating Professional Principles and Values in Health and Social Care Practice



Unit 3: Supporting the Individual Journey through Integrated Health and Social Care



Unit 4:  Fundamentals of Evidence-based Practice (Pearson-set Project) 



Unit 17: Effective Reporting and Record-keeping in Health and Social Care Services



Unit 10: Developing Operational Management Skills for Healthcare Practice 



Unit 8: Addressing Health Inequalities (15 credits) OR Unit 5 Health Education in Action





Work Placement:  Minimum 225 hours in any health and/or social care setting providing direct care to service users.





Total credits



This course is offered full –time during the day (typically 2 days per week of classes) or evening/Saturday, which is referred to as the ‘Flexi-Programme’.

We aim to deliver excellent teaching through a variety of styles and learning methods and enable students to translate their knowledge, understanding and skills into their business and professional practice. This is done through lectures, seminars, industry related field trips, study skills support and personal tutor support.

The qualification prepares learners for employment in the health and social care sector and will be suitable for learners who have already decided that they wish to enter this area of work. Some adult learners may wish to make the commitment required by this qualification in order to enter a specialist area of employment in health and social care or progress in higher education.

Learners studying the BTEC Level 4 HNC should be able to progress to BTEC Level 5 HND or directly into employment in an associated profession. 



To gain the qualification each module must be successfully completed. Assessment is by a combination of coursework, assignments, projects or an examination.

Most units on the BTEC Higher National Diploma (HNC) level courses are worth 15 UK credits.  Students will be expected to commit at least 150 notional hours towards completing the learning outcomes per unit.  This usually consists of a combination of around 60% direct teaching time and around 40% independent study time (e.g. preparations for research and assessments, background reading, etc.).

Note: The HNC is awarded on completion of a minimum of 120 credits 


Entry Requirements

  • UK Level 3 BTEC qualification in Health and Social Care or related vocational area or;
  • A Level standard or equivalent
  • A standard of literacy and numeracy supported by a general education equivalent to four GCSEs at grade A*- C
  • Relevant work experience

More mature learners may present a more varied profile of achievement that is likely to include an experience of paid and/or unpaid employment.

International students:

Overseas learners must show proficiency in the English language and have an appropriate qualification equivalent to IELTS 5.5.

Restrictions on learner entry

The BTEC Level 4 qualification is accredited on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) for learners aged 18 years and over.


Admissions Process

The College will ensure that entry requirement are applied in accordance with institutional policy and that the admissions process will take the following format.

  • All applicants must complete an application form
  • Applicants will be subject to a personal (or Skype) interview where possible either by a member of the admissions team or approved agency (where this is not possible acceptance will be based on the information contained in the application form and any supporting documents)
  • If requested, applicants must provide two references in support of their suitability for the programme
  • Selection will be in the light of previous qualifications, past experience, and future aspirations
  • Mature entry applicants without the standard academic background will normally be interviewed to assess their suitability for the programme
  • Educational and employment references will be taken up wherever possible
  • All applicants must present original examination transcripts (English translation where necessary), or notarised copies and English Language examination transcripts (where applicable).
  • Note: Since David Game College works collaboratively with New College Swindon (NCS), students will also be registered with NCS and will, therefore, be eligible to access student finance through the Student Loans Company (SLC)



The Level 4 Higher National Certificate provides a solid grounding in healthcare practice, which students can build on should they decide to continue their studies beyond the Certificate stage. The Level 5 Higher National Diploma allows students to further specialise by committing to specific career paths and progression routes to degree-level study.

On successful completion of the Level 5 Higher National Diploma, students can develop their careers in the healthcare sector through:

● Entering employment

● Continuing existing employment

● Linking with the appropriate Professional Body

● Committing to Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

● Progressing to university.

The Level 5 Higher National Diploma is recognised by Higher Education providers as meeting admission requirements to much relevant health and social care-related courses, for example:

● BSc (Hons) in Management Studies (Health and Social Care)

● BA/BSc (Hons) in Health and Social Care

● BA/BSc (Hons) in Health Studies

● BSc (Hons) in Adult Nursing

● BSc (Hons) in Public Health

● BSc (Hons) in Health Promotion.

Details of entry requirements for BTEC Higher National graduates into degree programmes at institutions in the UK and internationally can be found on the Pearson Degree Course Finder website. Students should always check the entry requirements for degree programmes at specific Higher Education providers.

After completing a Pearson BTEC Level 4 Higher National Certificate, students can also progress directly into employment.


Career Progression


Job Roles


Integrated Health and Social Care

Senior care assistant, senior support worker in a range
of health and care settings, pathway tracker, integrated
support worker, care navigator or co-ordinator


Healthcare Management

Health educator, public health practitioner, wellbeing
co-ordinator, voluntary sector field worker or research
assistant, health improvement officer