Higher Education


Pearson BTEC Higher National qualifications are designed to develop practical skills alongside specialist knowledge and understanding of the subject area. These qualifications have been well respected and recognised by employers and Higher Education Institutions. The Higher National Diploma (HND) is a Level 5 qualification which is equivalent to the second year of the Bachelor Degree. HND qualifications can be studied by those in employment for professional development to enhance their career prospects or HNC students can use this as an alternative path to gain Higher Education locally at lower cost.

The Pearson BTEC Level 5 Higher National Diploma in Computing (Security) offers students a specialist programme aimed at developing the key skills required for a career in the exciting field of cyber security.

Students will gain a wide range of sector knowledge tied to practical skills gained in research, self-study, directed study and workplace scenarios.

Entry Requirements

For students who have recently been in education, the entry profile is as follow:

• HNC qualification in Computing with at least one Merit in the final unit grade profile

• A* to C grade (Grade 9-4) in GCSE English and Maths – strongly recommended
If you do not hold GCSE Maths and English at Grade C (Grade 4-5) or above then it is strongly recommended that you study these before starting on a Higher National programme, both to support your study and to allow you to progress to Higher Education.

On receipt of your application to study this course you will be invited to attend an admissions interview with a member of the teaching team to discuss the course and its requirements further.


Students develop specialist knowledge and awareness of key aspects of the cyber security sector through five core units:
Information Security Management
Business Intelligence
Computing Research Project (Pearson-set unit).

In addition to this, HND students will also cover the following two optional units:

Network Security
Advanced Programming

Note: Optional units may change to meet local employment need.


HND units are assessed internally with some assessments being set by the awarding body and the rest set by the tutors. You will be graded for each individual unit with a Pass, Merit or Distinction. You may be assessed in many ways, such as presentations, written reports and practical tasks.

Awarding body

Pearson BTEC


On successful completion of this course you can continue with employment or use the HND as an entry to apply for other Higher Education qualifications e.g. Bachelor Degree, Top-up Degree. You can apply to university to complete a degree in a related subject; entry to the degree may be at Year 3 dependent upon the university and degree programme. This qualification can also be used to support a job application within a related profession.

Additional information

During your interview you will be advised for the course fee, any additional course requirements and costs. The information on the college policies and procedures, Terms and Conditions and the Student Protection Plan (SPP) are available on the college website (https://macclesfield.ac.uk/awards-policies-and-values/student-and-college-policies/). Also, a copy of these terms and conditions and the Student Protection Plan will be given to you to read before enrolling on the course.

Further Information

For further information, advice and guidance call The Learner Experience Team on 01625 410062.

Duration and Times

Start date: 20/09/2021

End date: 24/06/2022

Time: 9:00am - 4:30pm

Days of week: W Th

Number of Weeks: 33

Weekly hours: 12.00

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