Skip to Content

Latest update on Access to HE - May/June

Latest update on Access to HE - May / June 2022


As we are now in the Summer Term, for Access to HE this means the Final Award Boards (FABs) will soon be here and the team look forward to attending these and celebrating the learners’ achievements.

As the ERF arrangements are still in place, this means that award through extenuation is also still available should a learner have experienced extenuating circumstances relating to COVID-19 that has prevented them from completing their assessments. Evidence for the achievement of learning outcomes is still required and other avenues of completing the set assessments would need to have been explored. Centres must contact the Access team to discuss further if they believe they have a learner who may qualify for award through extenuation.

Diploma Review and Revalidation

Since the last newsletter, the specifications for the revalidated Diplomas have now all been uploaded onto our website and distributed to Centres.

As a reminder the following Diplomas included in the revalidation plan for 2021-22 were:

  • Access to HE Diploma (Computer Science)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Computer Science and Mathematics)
  • Access to HE Diploma (English Studies)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Health Science)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Humanities)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Radiography)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Science)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Social Science and English Studies)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Social Science and Humanities)

The specifications for all of our Diplomas can be found here.

Across the summer the AVA will be sending out updates regarding the development of the following Diplomas:

  • Access to HE Diploma (Criminology)
  • Access to HE Diploma (Data Science)


Access to HE Brian May Learner Awards

This year’s The Brian May Access to HE Learner Award winners were celebrated on Tuesday 10th May 2022 at Wolverhampton Racecourse. This year there were six winners in the category for Outstanding Commitment to Study and four winners in the category for Outstanding Achievement. Awards of £600 have been made to the successful winners.

The event not only celebrated the winners’ achievements but also focussed on the critical part Access to HE is playing in widening participation and levelling up, as emphasised by Open College Network West Midlands Chief Executive Officer, Kevern Kerswell, in his introduction.

Attendees heard from previous Access to HE student and winner Charlene Spreadborough who explained her journey and how Access to HE had enabled her to be at the point of completing her nursing degree.

Each learner was introduced by their nominating tutor and presented their award by Tara Verrell. Tara is one of Brian May’s daughters and was joined at the ceremony by sister Juliet. We were pleased to share the event with them and for them to see the legacy of Brian continuing.

The day was inspiring and clearly provided examples of what Access to HE does best. That is providing opportunities for learners to access higher education and fulfil their potential. Further reporting of the event can be found here.

Congratulations to all the learners! The Access team at Open College Network West Midlands wishes them the very best for the future.


Final Moderation and Standardisation

Since the last newsletter, the AVA has updated all Centres and Curriculum Area Moderators (CAMs) with the information and documentation for Final Moderation and Final Award Boards (FABs). Centres and CAMs should now be in communication with each other to arrange sampling of assessed work. All CAM moderation reports are to be completed and received by the AVA before the arranged FAB can take place for a Centre. FABs are scheduled to commence taking place from week commencing Monday 20th June.

Centres have also just completed the AVA’s remote Access to HE Standardisation Activities, this year focussing on Internal Moderation feedback and the collation of evidence for assessment tasks involving presentations and or discussions. All responses will now be analysed, and Centres invited to a feedback session on 26th May 10.00-11.30 via Zoom.


Training and Support

All arranged AVA training sessions have now taken place. If you or your staff were unable to attend but would like to discuss any further opportunities between now and September, please contact the Access team at to discuss options for bespoke sessions.

The Access team’s weekly drop-in support clinics will continue to operate via Zoom. These are opportunities to speak with a member of the team in addition to the usual email and telephone communication modes.

The Access team wish all Centres a positive and celebratory Summer term and look forward to working with all.

Pam Stanway, Laura Walker and Andrea Lake.



Back to top