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Ulster University Foundation Degree in Applied Industrial Sciences - Life Science HLA

Applications for this course are now closed!
Level 5
Mode of Study
Part Time
Course Type
Higher Level Apprenticeship
Portadown Campus


A HLA is a work-based programme which enables you to earn while you learn and gain a nationally recognised professional qualification. The College will liaise with relevant employers to find you employment. This is subject to interview by the relevant employer. You will be in paid employment in a local pharmaceutical / life sciences company for 2 years and Southern Regional College will have a close relationship with your employer in mentoring you throughout your employment period.

The Foundation Degree in Applied Industrial Science forms the underpinning knowledge for the HLA programme. You will benefit greatly through this form of experiential learning by applying academic subject content in a work setting as well as developing a range of practical work related skills, decision making, communications, negotiating skills and teamwork. 

All lecturers are highly experienced in their specific field with most educated to Masters level and some to PhD level. All lecturers have recent relevant industrial experience with some having worked in industry for a number of years prior to joining the College as lecturers. Through collaboration with industry students will receive the most up to date and relevant experience possible.

The HLA is delivered one day a week within the College while the Apprentice is employed in Industry four days per week.


Applicants must be at least 18 years of age on or before 1st July in the year of proposed entry to the course. 

  • Applicants should normally have obtained a minimum of 48 UCAS points achieved through the completion of A-Levels, National Awards, Access or other alternative approved level 3 qualifications (to have successfully achieved Chemistry at Level 3). 
  • Have attained at least 15 points at Level 2 or above (e.g. GCSE) or have alternative approved qualifications (GCSE Maths Grade C or approved equivalent and GCSE English Grade C or Essential Skills L2). In addition, applicants must provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English Language.  
  • Entry to HLA - employers may further enhance the entry criteria at their discretion. All applicants for HLAs will be interviewed by prospective employers to decide their suitability prior to being employed by a company.  Each the applicant must secure employment with a Northern Ireland based company with a minimum contract of 21 hours. Entrance to HLAs is subject to meeting DfE Operational requirements.

Application Process

Stage 1. Complete both the application form and the additional information form. Attend a pre-enrolment information session where you will receive more information about your chosen course. You will be advised if you can progress to stage 2 if you meet or have the potential to meet the entrance criteria.

Stage 2. For applicants who receive a Conditional Offer from SRC, your additional information will be forwarded to a list of potential employers identified by SRC (alternatively if you have an employer in mind you can contact the College who will assess workplace suitability). You will progress to stage 3 if you meet the employer's criteria for interview selection.

Stage 3. Interview stage - If following the interview stage you secure a conditional offer of employment under the HLA programme you will progress to stage 4.

Stage 4. Applicants must present evidence to SRC on A-Level Results Day that relevant A-Level or equivalent qualifications are achieved. Evidence of a conditional offer of employment must also be in place at this time from the participating employer. The College will then proceed to issue a FIRM offer onto the HLA Programme. Please note that a FIRM offer is not a guarantee that the course will commence (See below point 2):
Please note:

  1. Employers are responsible for contacting you (the applicant) directly to invite you for interview. SRC is not involved in the shortlisting or interview process. Employers are responsible for contacting you (the applicant) directly to make you an offer of employment.
  2. The HLA programme will run subject to sufficient enrolments. Although you may be in receipt of a FIRM letter of offer onto the course, the College reserves the right to only run the course if sufficient enrolments are in place.
  3. Attendance is strongly recommended by all HLA applicants at the Southern Regional College's Careers session. Invitations will be issued to advise of date, time and location.



  • Academic Skills
  • Mathematical and Statistical Science
  • Core Chemistry Skills for Biology
  • GLP
  • Physiology of the Human Body
  • Introduction to Evidence Based Professional Practice
  • Developing Skills for Industry
  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology and Cell Biology
  • Professional Practice in the Laboratory
  • Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Work Based Learning


Two years part-time (3 semesters per year)


This course is accredited by Ulster University.


Click here to view our terms and conditions




Progression from this course may take the form of either a career as a professional within the science industry or subsequent pursuit of a higher level academic qualification.


This course will provide an opportunity for you to undertake a vocationally relevant qualification in Biomedical Science. The course also promotes opportunities for further progression to degree level courses and career opportunities in the industry. 

On successful completion of this course (Modules at Level 5) graduates of the Foundation Degree are eligible to apply for progression to the BSc Hons programmes in Biomedical Science at Ulster University. Alternatively, you may have the opportunity to go straight into employment.


On successful completion of this course (Modules at Level 5) graduates of the Foundation Degree are eligible to apply for progression to the Level 6 Higher Level Apprenticeship BSc Pharmaceutical Bioscience at Ulster University.

Note:  It is the responsibility of the applicant to check each University’s admission and progression requirements before enrolling on a course at the College.


All full-time courses starting in September 2021 are open for applications. Please click on the Apply Now button (top right in the blue box) to begin your application. 

If you require any assistance with your application you can call us on 0300 123 1223.



Mark Kennedy

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

028 3025 9685


In light of the continuing Covid-19 situation, Southern Regional College may have to amend the delivery methods for a number of courses for the new academic year, or should the need arise effect a temporary College closure. This may also lead to restrictions when accessing student services. Please be assured that the safety of our students is paramount and as such we will be implementing a range of measures in line with government advice and protocols. We will make all appropriate and reasonable adjustments to maintain the ongoing quality of teaching and learning and our support services.

In accordance with the Consumer Rights Act 2015, you will be notified of any such changes, the reasons for the changes and any options available to you to avoid such changes having an adverse impact on your future career. All higher education students and applicants should refer to the Consumer Protection page.


Information about our fees policy including details on registration and reduced fees as well as refunds can be found HERE

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