course image

General EngineeringHNC

This is the perfect programme if you aspire to specialise in engineering. You will learn in an industry-standard environment with industry trained tutors.

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 the field of engineering.

The ability to study part-time alongside your job, allows you to gain an industry-recognised qualification that is accepted around the world. The HNC becomes your passport to advancing your career in engineering. Studying and working at the same time does require good organisational and time management skills, but it allows you to apply your learning immediately to your job as well as to bring in reallife examples from your work into the learning environment to discuss with peers.

What's covered?

This programme is offered part-time so you can work in the engineering industry alongside your studies. You will be in college one day per week, and we can liaise with your employer to help shape the course to meet your needs. In the second year there is a work-based project, so you can study a topic that supports your career progression and your employer. Currently we have students from a range of companies including Procter and Gamble.


Maths for Engineers: This unit will provide the analytical knowledge and techniques needed to carry out a range of engineering tasks and will provide a base for further study of engineering mathematics.

Engineering Science: Engineers, no matter from what discipline, need to acquire a fundamental understanding of the mechanical and electrical principles that underpin the design and operation of a large range of engineering equipment and systems. This unit will develop your understanding of the key mechanical and electrical concepts that relate to all aspects of engineering.

Mechanical Principles: This unit aims to develop your understanding of an extended range of mechanical principles that underpin the design and operation of mechanical engineering systems. You will analyse the use of mechanical power transmission systems, both individually and in the combinations that are used in practical situations.

Electrical and Electronic Principles: Circuits and their characteristics are fundamental to any study of electrical and electronic engineering and therefore a good understanding is important to any engineer. You will be able to take complex electrical circuit problems, break them down into acceptable elements and apply techniques to solve or analyse the characteristics. Additionally, you will perform fine tuning of the circuits to obtain required output dynamics.

Computer-aided Design for maintenance engineers: This unit will support the development of your CAD abilities and build upon those skills to introduce the more advanced techniques that are used to create and modify schematic drawings quickly and efficiently.

PLC: This unit will provide you with wide experience in computer-based programming. This is used for automation of typical industrial electro-mechanical processes and provide maximum opportunities to develop appropriate engineering skills. This will benefit both you and your employer. The knowledge of PLC will also be essential if you wish to develop your specific engineering skills.

Contact hours

This programme will run on Wednesdays (year one) and Thursdays (year two).

Industry links

  • Laing O'Rourke
  • P & G
  • Unilever
  • Britvic

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 industry. The HNC is graded pass, merit or distinction.

Practical assignments enable the manfacture of products. You will also engage in simulated virtual environments to assess how you engage with practical requirements.

What can I do after this?

Following graduation from the HNC, you are eligible to progress onto a Higher National Diploma (HND) or onto a full degree programme.

Additional costs

You are required to being your own personal protective equipment (PPE). However, the College will provide tools and there are no additional costs.

Graduate destinations

Previous students have progressed to study at Greenwich University and the Open University.

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

  • BTEC Level 3 Engineering
  • AVCE/GNVQ in a related vocational area (Level 3)
  • A-levels in maths and science subjects
  • A related Access to Higher Education Certificate or other related Level 3 qualifications
  • Related work experience supported by GCSEs at grades 9-4 (A** to C) or equivalent

You will also need GCSE English and GCSE 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.

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, 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: Fees are per academic year for home and EU students.

This award is validated by Pearson Edexcel.

  • Venue Thurrock Campus
  • Starts Monday, September 14, 2020
  • Attendance Part time day
  • Duration 2 years
  • Provision Higher Education
  • Cost £3250.00
  • Cost details £3250 per academic year.
Apply now