In the UK, degrees are awarded to those who complete HND courses. HND stands for Higher National Diploma and is a title equivalent to the Diploma of Higher Education or DipHE. In essence, earning either of these two titles means that the student is qualified to pursue further university studies. In most cases, however, this only applies to those who have successfully taken an HND course.
Education experts tend to classify HND courses as vocational courses because they can also be completed part-time. However, a number of institutions in various parts of the UK are known to offer these as a requirement for higher studies. In Scotland, for example, the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) awards its students a Higher National Degree, a title roughly equivalent to that of a sophomore entering college.
The grading system in many SQA HND courses is considered a bit odd compared to the regular educational programs. Grades can be either passing or distinction, with merit as an additional criterion; In practice, however, both Distinction and Merit are optional, with Pass being the only mandatory grade.
In Ireland, the equivalent of an HND course is the HETAC Higher Certificate. Despite some similarities to the SQA degree offering, the HETAC claims to have a significantly different grading system, rate of progression, and learning outcome.
Despite this, HND courses are still considered degrees lower than a bachelor’s degree in all respects. However, it is not uncommon for those who successfully complete an HND course to add the degree to their name. This is actually allowed under existing UK school regulations, giving many students the option of putting the HND title after their respective names after graduation. After the title, the name of the completed course is usually in brackets.
Successful completion of the requirements of a particular HND course advances the student to further university studies, particularly in programs such as business and engineering, among others. In such a scenario, students typically enter the business course as juniors, while those majoring in engineering majors enter as sophomores. In the UK education system, this particular facility is commonly referred to as ‘top-up’.
Typical HND courses can be quite confusing at a glance. Still, it can also be an exciting endeavor, especially for those who are serious about pursuing higher education.
Thanks to Ellis Holloway | #HND #Courses #Hindsight