Social Sciences NC Level 6

What is special about this course?

Perhaps you’re looking for a change of career, a stepping stone into Higher Education or a chance to broaden your understanding of the world you live in. The NC in Social Sciences award will give you a solid foundation of knowledge, preparing you for further progression onto Humanities Higher Education courses in the university. It is delivered fully online allowing you study full time via blended delivery from any location.

You will be introduced to the key social science concepts in Research, Psychology, Sociology, Politics and other subjects that can then be built on with further HE study and application. The course offers significant breadth across a wide range of subjects which complement each other in their explanation of the global social and personal world.

You will have the opportunity to question and challenge commonly held assumptions and will enable you to develop the academic skills required to support those challenges in a robust manner. You will be introduced to the importance of keen analytical research skills and will be supported to explore new ways of looking at the world.

During your course, we introduce you to using a range of digital technologies, which will help you get the most from your course and at the same time develop your digital skills. Find out more about key computing skills and essential student skills.

Entry requirements

Four National 5s, two at A or B and two at C or D including a social subject and:

  • English or English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)


  • satisfactory attainment of a prerequisite SCQF Level 5 course or equivalent.

Applications are encouraged from mature students who do not possess formal qualifications but have the skills to meet the academic demands of the course.

We’ll be inviting you by email to attend course information sessions between now and the start of your course. We’d urge you to come along if at all possible.

The course will introduce the following areas:

  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Politics
  • Criminology

You may also study units from the following subjects:

  • History
  • Geography
  • Economics
  • Personal Development

If you don't yet have an English qualification at level 6, you will undertake the NC Communications unit.  You will also undertake Mathematics National 5 unless you already possess it.

More than just your subject

Imagine coming out of college with your subject qualification PLUS a portfolio of skills endorsed by employers. That’s exactly what you will get with us. Our skills+ portfolio is part of your full-time course. You will develop skills in digital literacy, entrepreneurship, metaskills, work-readiness, net-zero, wellbeing, and the skills you need for your future aspirations. Our skills+ portfolio becomes your portfolio to take away with you. Whilst studying your subject you will build your skills+ portfolio and gain confidence and resilience along the way.


Internet connection and a suitable device with headphones, microphone and camera (minimum spec) is required. Please email us if you have any concerns about connectivity or equipment.

How will I study my course?

  • Full Time
  • Online

You normally need to commit to 18 hours per week (2-3 days) of blended learning time consisting of timetabled learning and personal study.

Timetabled learning will take place in an online classroom where you connect and interact with your lecturer and classmates using with video, voice and text chat. You will also complete regular and flexible personal study which most students choose to do from home.

How long will my course last?

34 Weeks

How will I be assessed?

    You will be assessed by means of a combination of practical tasks and open and closed book assessments throughout the year. You may have to attend a college centre or other exam centre for some of these – we can discuss this with you on application.

Where can I study my course?

    Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023, subject to Scottish Government approval. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study.

Start date

Late August/Early September 2023


For the latest information on fees please see our Fees & Funding information pages.

What can I do on completion of my course?

This course is an ideal preparation for HNC Social Sciences or for progression on to a social sciences based degree.

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Social Sciences NC Level 6

I want to start in 2023/24

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI West Highland. Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023, subject to Scottish Government approval. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study. UHI West Highland operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.