We offer a wide range of adult courses that are designed to suit your needs if you are returning to study. You can choose from apprenticeships, degree courses, short leisure courses and training to get you back into employment. With full-time, part-time and work-based options on offer you are guaranteed to find the course for you.

Please note: course fees on the website are only a guide. Due to changes in government funding throughout the year, please contact us for the very latest information.

The latest for adults

5 hours 27 min ago

Industry Week helps get students ahead in business

4 hours 40 min ago

Charlie studied #PublicServices at the College and is now a Police Officer with @MPSBarkDag. Read his story here:

My story Dan Bowyers
Access to Higher Education (Health Professions) Level 3 Diploma

Dan Bowyers
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Hello I’m Dan, I’m 31, I’m studying Access to Health Professions and this is my story.

I started at the College in September 2014 with ambition of becoming a mental health nurse. I want to help people with drug addictions and alcohol abuse. What inspired me was that I am a recovering alcoholic myself. I have been battling with alcohol for ten years and have now been sober for four years.

On my mission to scout out colleges, I found South Essex College on the website and it seemed like the one for me. It looked large and modern. I didn’t know before about Access courses and when I saw that you didn’t need any previous qualifications I knew it was the place for me and that I could be in university within a year.

I came along to the open day, felt straight at home and loved it, which I have done ever since.

I have had a great experience on the course. The teachers have been great and really helpful. Whenever there is a problem you can always talk to them or email them if it is out of hours. I have also made some really good friends, which is a bonus. It has been really challenging but worth it.

Now my course is coming to an end, I am going to Greenwich University do a three-year course in mental health nursing and then hopefully get a job in the NHS. Eventually my partner and I would like to take our child and work abroad.

I would like to say to anyone who is suffering from an addiction and is maybe a bit worried about coming back into education that it can be done. I am living proof of that. I have been through alot in my life and I never pictured myself here four years ago. I think that if you have the determination and the passion you can get anywhere in life.

My story Andrew Hall
UAL Print Media & Journalism Level 3 Extended Diploma

Andrew Hall

My name is Andrew Hall, I am 29 years old, I studied GNVQ Intermediate Media and BND Print and Publishing at South Essex College from 2001 to 2004 and this is my story.

My background (along with most of the students I studied with) was that I studied for my GCSEs at school and when I finished I wanted to study something that excited me. I chose to study at South Essex College because I felt the College would give me a better understanding of the field I wanted to investigate. College prepared me for the workplace by making me able to talk to people from all backgrounds. It taught me to know when I should speak and when to listen, when to fight my corner to the bitter end or when I should admit defeat. I learnt that stuff happens - the good and the bad - but what happens next is just as important. If something bad happens you have to pick yourself off the floor, dust yourself off and keep going.

Since completing my course I have had a range of jobs such as working at Essex County Council and Chelmsford City Council. In 2010, I started working on my young adult book reviewing blog called The Pewter Wolf (

For the Pewter Wolf blog I read and review books and then give an honest reaction to the blog readers. I fell into being a book blogger by sheer fluke. I was unemployed and while looking for work I started reading and then writing my thoughts on the book I read online. I didn’t think anything of it when I started, but then publishers and authors talked to me and invited me to blogger events, sending me books in exchange for an honest review and I found myself being part of the book blogger community. At College I learnt different things that made me have a much better understanding of the field I was entering which is hugely important now when I write The Pewter Wolf. Just because I don’t use the equipment I learnt on at College doesn’t mean they haven’t been useful in my life now. It’s how you use those skills that is important.

The great thing about doing further education was that I studied the field that I was interested in. No one told me I had to. I wanted to learn about the world of media and then later the world of publishing. Because I wanted this knowledge I made myself learn it and I had to put the work in. The skills I learnt at College have helped me in both my professional and private life. The College taught me that it is important to listen to my work colleagues and work with them and there are also times when I must use my skills to work alone. It also taught me to voice my thoughts over possible ideas and to ask questions - no matter how big or small they are.

I think my favourite memory of being at College was my first day. I remember the excitement and nerves over what was going to happen next. Meeting my fellow classmates, who felt exactly the same as me as no one knew what was going to happen next. Then getting straight into it. That, I think, is my fave memory. Earlier this year The Pewter Wolf was nominated for three awards with the UKYA Blogger Awards. These awards are the first (to my knowledge) to be supported by publishers and recognise the hard work that book bloggers do. I won one award; Blogger’s Blogger, which is a huge honour as I still feel like I am faking my way through reviewing books at times.

My ambition is to keep working hard at The Pewter Wolf and continue reading books so that my review may make one person think: “That sounds like something I like”, and discover a book or author that they love. I feel that my time at the College built my confidence up and it was the start of me getting comfortable in my own skin. College was the kick I needed to realise that I didn’t need to please everyone. I had to please myself and make myself happy. It took a long time to get there (and I think we all have a long way to go) but College was very much the starting block! I would recommend South Essex College because it gave me space to grow. Not just in what I was learning, but personally as well.

10 hours 40 min ago

Donated bike goes to a good home

5 hours 28 min ago

Industry Week helps get students ahead in business

My story Caroline Laurie
Health & Social Care Level 3 Diploma

Caroline Laurie

My name is Caroline Laurie, I am 21, I studied a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care at South Essex College from 2011-2013.

I started at College when I was 18 and before that I had been in hospital for a year and a half due to anorexia and depression. Two months prior to my starting the course I moved into a very difficult house-share under a local housing association and all-in-all it was a very difficult time.

I chose the College because it was local and offered the course I was looking for. Although I struggled sometimes at College the tutors were always helpful and supportive and I made friends. I studied as much as I could and in 2013 I achieved D* (distinctions) in every module- I was ecstatic! Despite mental illness and a very difficult home life I was able to get the grade wanted and progress.

I am now at in my first year at university studying for a BSc in Health Studies, I am on the horse riding team.

I am now volunteering with AGE UK on their Silver Surfer scheme where I am helping elderly people deal with computers and the internet and hope to pursue a career in the health and social care sector when I graduate.
The College helped with my transition to higher education and I am writing this to say that no matter what you are going through, try your best and have hope. You may surprise yourself! There are always other people who are going through the same thing as you and you are never alone.

6 hours 50 min ago

Don't take risks when using the #Grays level crossing - the barriers are there for a reason!

1 day 4 hours ago

Peter Jones Enterprise Academy students meet West Ham owner

My story James Harrison

James Harrison

James Harrison >

My name is James, I am 25 years old, I studied Access to Media at South Essex College from 2013 to 2014 and this is my story.

Before I came to South Essex College I ran a business in online marketing and web development for six years but decided I wanted to do something new and face a new challenge. I chose the College because it was local to me and provided a course that would lead me to university.

My time at the College developed my study and other transferrable skills, which prepared me well for university. It improved my writing and research skills and the Apple iMac computers were loaded with lots of industry-used software such as Photoshop and Final Cut Pro.

Having achieved a distinction in every module at the College, I was accepted into Bournemouth University to study Marketing Communications.

The best thing about doing further and higher education is knowing that you are gaining valuable knowledge for your future. My proudest moment was when my lecturer told me I had managed to achieve the highest grade possible after all the hard work I put in, this led to me getting accepted by a good university.

South Essex College is good because it is in a great location in the High Street and close to the seafront. My time there encouraged me to share my knowledge with others. I was a course rep at the College and have gone on to be a student rep at university so I can continue helping my peers with their studies.

My ambition is to achieve high grades at university and then build a career in the marketing industry.