HNC Mechanical Engineering England

Course overview

Delivered at our Reading College and University Centre campus, this new Higher Technical Qualification (HTQ) has been developed in collaboration with employers, professional bodies, and higher education providers to develop students as professional, self-reflecting individuals able to meet the demands of employers in the engineering sector.

HTQs are qualifications at Level 4 or Level 5, including Higher National Certificates (HNCs), Higher National Diplomas (HNDs) and Foundation Degrees, and are approved by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education to enable students to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours sought after by employers. 

You can find out more about higher technical qualifications here:


During your first year, you will study the following topics:

  • Engineering Design
  • Engineering Maths
  • Managing a Professional Engineering Project
  • Mechanical Engineering Principles

During your second year, you will learn about: ‍

  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Fundamentals of Thermodynamics and Heat Engines
  • Quality and Process Improvement
  • Production Engineering for Manufacture

‍On successful completion you will be awarded: Higher National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering for England (HTQ)

The HNC is an internationally recognised qualification for engineering technicians and will enhance your career prospects. For those wanting to upgrade to an HND, this should be discussed with their personal tutor at the end of a successful year one.



A typical offer would be a BTEC Level 3 Diploma at Merit or Distinction with GCSE maths and English C grade or above/ Functional Skills at Level 2. A Levels in Maths, Science, or IT.

We will consider alternative qualifications or equivalent work experience. Please contact us to discuss your circumstances. ‍

Applicants whose first language is not English must also demonstrate that their level of English is acceptable, by achieving a score in a recognised test such as British Council IELTS -normally minimum level 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 6.0 in the reading and writing components.

On successful completion of the HNC, students will be able to progress to an HND (Higher National Diploma) at Activate Learning or at another institution (dependent upon meeting their entry requirements).

Applicants should apply online through the Activate Learning website.

Fees for September 2024?entry are £3,265 per year for UK students. ‍

Please note: Tuition fees are published for the first year of entry only and may increase in subsequent years for new students in line with an inflationary amount determined by the Office for Students. There are a variety of funding options available to help finance your studies. If you are a UK (Home) student, you don’t have to pay your tuition fees up front. The government provides loans to cover your full tuition fee. You may also be eligible for a maintenance loan to help cover living costs. Alternatively, your fees may be paid by your employer, or we could arrange a payment schedule if you are paying your own fees.

‍Additional costs: Students are advised that they will need access to a laptop or PC. We recommend that you budget c£100 a year additional costs such as for stationary to undertake your studies. You can borrow textbooks and access journals from the recommended reading lists are available from the Learning Resource Centre. If you choose to purchase textbooks, they may cost up to c£60 each.

Course Starts in 89 Days
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We want our learners to feel welcome, safe and at ease when attending our classes, especially if this is your first time attending an adult education class or if you're coming back to education after a break.
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