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Construction & the Built EnvironmentHNC

Developed in consultation with employers by Pearson Edexcel, this course is suited for those pursuing a career in Construction & the Built Environment.

Course details


Our Higher National Certificate course offers a good balance of academic theory and practical industry knowledge which is firmly aligned to your job requirements from day one. Through high-quality lectures, case study research and employer-based projects you will gain a unique blend of general skills along with specific industry knowledge in sustainable construction management. Content on the course centres around current UK and International Building Projects.

What's covered?

This course places a strong emphasis on analysis and evaluation of subject-specialist concepts and procedures. By the end of the programme you will have gained significant sector skills knowledge and competence to undertake middle to senior management responsibilities.

The qualification has a minimum credit value of 125 credits. This comprises mandatory core unit value of 65 credits and specialist unit value of 55 credits. The course is primarily designed on the general pathway. Alternative pathways are subject to availability. To pass the course you must pass all eight units, including the four core units and four specialist units. These modules could relate to architectural technology, construction management, surveying or civil engineering. The College offers units that will best benefit the students in line with the requirements of the construction industry.

The academic year is split into two semesters and key dates are contained in the HE year planner. Each year consists of four units; units are delivered over one or two semester alongside assessment coursework. You will also receive tutorial support and feedback meetings.

Mandatory modules

  • Construction information (drawing, detailing and specification)
  • Science and materials
  • Individual project
  • Legal and statutory responsibilities in construction

Other units will include:

  • Surveying, measuring & setting out
  • Construction practice and management
  • Building information modelling
  • Construction technology

Guest speakers

You will also have the opportunity to attend guest speaker lectures delivered by industry experts from the Chartered Institute of Building and the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Field trips

You will benefit from educational trips to key UK construction projects, such as The National Self Build & Renovation Centre and the Othona zero carbon project.

Contact hours

  • one day a week
  • 6 hours contact time comprising lectures and study sessions
  • one hour tutorial

How will my work be assessed?

The course is assessed through coursework. You will complete assignments that focus on the practical application of the assessment criteria, providing a realistic scenario for you to adopt, making maximum use of work-related practical experience and reflecting typical practice in the construction and built environment. The HNC is graded pass, merit or distinction.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is a method of assessment (leading to the award of credit) that considers whether you can demonstrate that you can meet the assessment requirements for a unit through knowledge, understanding or skills you already possess and so do not need to develop through a course of learning. This can be discussed at the start of the course.

Graduate destinations

Students progressing form the course have gone to work for:

  • Gilles-Surveyors
  • Skanska
  • Bradford Watts
  • Sharkey

You will need a minimum of 64 UCAS points from one or more of the following:

  • BTEC Level 3 Construction
  • AVCE/GNVQ in a related vocational area (Level 3)
  • an A-level with strong performance in relevant subjects
  • a related Access to Higher Education Certificate or other related Level 3 qualifications
  • related work experience supported by GCSEs at grades A*-C or equivalent

You will also need GCSE English and Maths at grade C (old specification) or Grade 4 (new specification) or above OR a Level 2 equivalent such as functional skills.

To find out how many points your qualifications are awarded, view the UCAS Tariff tables.

All candidates will be required to attend an interview.

Exceptional Entry

Applications from mature students who do not possess the entry requirements as listed above, but who possess related professional experience or professional qualifications, are welcome to apply. You will need to demonstrate by interview, exceptional entry portfolio (this is likely to include evidence of paid or unpaid work experience) and/or written assessment that you are suitable for the course. In the first instance we suggest you contact to discuss your application.


Open Event - Higher Education Degrees, HNCs & HNDs

Saturday, 05 October 2019

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Saturday, 28 March 2020

Saturday, 20 June 2020

Our Higher Education Open Events are held at the Southend Campus on Luker Road. These events are the perfect opportunity to find out all you need to know about degree, HND and HNC courses on offer at South Essex College.



Costume Construction BA (Hons) Open Day

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Saturday, 28 March 2020

This open day is a great opportunity to view the Costume Centre, look at current students work and to talk to the course leader about the course.


Ready to apply?

Applying for a course is simple:

  1. View the Course details above to ensure this is the correct course for you.
  2. Check the Entry requirements above.
  3. Choose your preferred course option below and click the arrow to view details.
  4. Click the button to apply or make an enquiry.

If you have any questions, a course adviser is here to help you.

Please note: We are no longer accepting 2018-19 applications

Fees are per academic year for home and EU students.

This award is validated by Pearson Edexcel.

  • Venue Thurrock Campus
  • Starts Monday, September 16, 2019
  • Attendance Part time day
  • Duration 2 years
  • Provision Higher Education
  • Cost £3250.00
Apply now