Working with Communities HNC @ SCQF Level 7


This HNC is an exciting opportunity for those want a career in community learning and development and in a wide range of community settings including youth work, adult education or community work. 

It is a qualification that offers a range skills and experiences which will equip learners to work effectively and reflectively in the wide-ranging field of community learning and development. Those with experience will become equipped with the required underpinning knowledge in regard to community work theory and practice. You will learn the importance of ethics in relation to practice.  This HNC has been developed as a practitioners course but may offer a route to study at university.

In addition, you will study a wide range of relevant subjects including group work, sociology, principles of community learning and development, approaches to learning, youth work and managing resources, ensuring you will be well prepared for degree-level study or employment.

This is a particularly challenging course at SCQF 7,  you must consider that it is the right time in your life to study.  Students who have support from a circle of family and or friends do tend to study more successfully.  If you currently work in a different field, will you be able to continue this with the amount of time required for study and placement?  Have you good all round health to attend 100%, and have you the resilience to cope with the potential stresses of meeting standards and deadlines, do you have the motivation and determination to complete this course successfully?




One year full time, consisting around two days per week of a blend of college and e-learning.  Around 2 days of placement will also be necessary if you are not currently working in the community.

Entry Requirements

  • A minimum of two relevant Highers at B or above, including English and ideally National 5 Maths
  • A Foundation Apprenticeship in Social Services & Healthcare will count as one Higher, you must meet the other entry requirements above.
  • SVQ 3 will also meet entry requirements. 
  • You must become a PVG (Protecting Vulnerable Groups) member
  • Consideration will be given to those with considerable experience of working in a community learning and development setting who do not meet the academic entry requirements.
  • Make sure your application is accurate and detailed as it helps us to decide if you are to be invited for interview.
  • Your personal statement in your application must be no less than 250 words.  You may want to research how to write a personal statement here:
  • If you are on a current SCQF 6 programme such as Introduction to Youth Work and Communities, Health and Social Care Theory or Health and Social Care Practice then there are progression requirements set by the department which you must meet and include but are not limited to: Successful completion of current course, engagement and attendance, positive tutor reference, number resits.  These applications will be considered carefully on merit.
  • SVQ in Community Development Work at SCQF level 6
  • SVQ in Youth Work at SCQF level 6
  • NC in Working with Communities at SCQF level 6
  • PDA in Community Involvement at SCQF level 6 or level 7

Additional Entry Requirements

  • HNC students are expected to pay £59 to become a member of the PVG scheme, those who already hold membership will pay less for an update.
  • You must bring evidence of your qualifications
  • Your interview may be individual or group
  • All applicants must show motivation and possess the appropriate abilities and skills to attend the programme.
  • Working in community learning and development means you must be able to separate your home life from work.  You must be reliable, punctual and trustworthy and able to attend college and placement 100% of the time.

Information and Interview Session Requirements

  • Entry to this programme is competitive 
    • Applicants must respond to the interview session invitation – your appointment may be offered to someone else if you do not. This interview may be held via Teams or phone.
    • Be prepared to write around 250 words in 20 minutes for us to assess your writing potential.  You may be given a topic such as My Home Town, My Greatest Achievement, My Hopes for the Future. The topic will be decided for you on the day.
    • You should also be prepared to discuss:
      • Strengths and weaknesses.
      • Skills you have that would be useful in community learnning and development.
      • Your understanding of the current key issues in community learning and development.

Course Content

  • Principles and Practice of Community Learning 
  • Managing Resources
  • Group Work
  • Sociology
  • Learning Approaches
  • Adult Education
  • Working with Young People
  • Health Promotio
  • Students complete a placement in a community-based organisation usually around 2 days a week. Students are taught in a blended way with a combination of face to face or online learning for two days a week. Students can use existing paid or voluntary work for their placement or they will be supported to find a placement.


  • Essays
  • Short answer assignments 
  • Presentations
  • Observation of practice


  • The HNC can allow entry into degree programmes.  It should be noted however that this is not automatic and is subject to meeting the requirements of the university.  Examples of degree programmes include progress to a degree in Community Education at Dundee University, Glasgow University or the University of the West of Scotland.  A degree level qualification in this field may lead to registration with the CLD Standards Council.

Career Prospects

  • Employment in youth work, adult education or community work.

Additional funding information

SAAS funding may be available.

Selling Points

Multiple career and study pathways on completion