Applied Health and Life Sciences (SWAP) NQ

What is special about this course?

This innovative new course has been developed in response to the increased demand for adults looking for a more flexible method of learning and for those who may not be able to come to a college campus for study.  This programme is part of the Scottish Wider Access Programme (SWAP) for adults who have been out of full-time education for a while.  

Students from all over Scotland will be able to access this learning. The study will be on-line with 2/3 visits on campus during the year, for practical lab work and assessments.

This course is a SWAP (Scottish Wider Access Programme) which supports adults, ordinarily resident in Scotland to return to education after a gap. Since 1989, SWAP programmes have paved the way for thousands of people to access degree study at all our universities in Scotland. If you are looking for a change of direction and need a flexible method of learning pathway to access degree level qualifications, this course is for you.

If would like to find out more about SWAP programmes, please go to their website . The SWAP East Team can also answer any specific queries that you may have:

Entry requirements

Students must have been out of full-time education for at least 3 years if they have studied to SCQF Level 5 and 5 years if they have studied to SCQF Level 6 or above. For information on whether this programme is for you, please go to: Is SWAP for me?

Applicants should have a good general education in Maths and English and a demonstrated interest in pursuing a science related career; SCQF level 5 qualifications in Maths and Science would be advantageous.  Skills gained through relevant life/work experiences will also be considered. If you do not meet entry requirements your application will still be considered on an individual basis.


You will study a range of Science subjects at SCQF level 5 and 6, including Chemistry, Biology and Human Biology, Physics, as well as units in Maths, ICT and Communication.  You will also gain practical laboratory and field experience in experimental procedures through intensive practical weeks in Perth.

How will I study my course?

  • Full Time
  • Part Time

Because this study is on-line, this course is available to adult returners throughout Scotland.  This course is delivered online, with 2/3 visits to campus during the year for practical lab work and some assessments.  You will have online classes 2 – 3 days per week and a range of tasks to complete on our virtual learning platform.  Virtual common rooms and weekly Personal Development Planning are part of this learning, with tutor and student services support available to you on-line.

How long will my course last?

1 Year

Where can I study my course?

    • UHI Perth

Start date



Most full-time students will have their fees paid.

Students on part-time courses may also be eligible to have their course fees waived.

What can I do on completion of my course?

Access to Life Sciences is a gateway to higher education.  Successful completion of this programme gives you the opportunity to choose from hundreds of degrees at Scottish universities, including Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry, Neuroscience, Food and Nutrition, Pharmacy, Computing Science, Sports Science, Diagnostic Radiography. It is also an important pathway to a career in the allied health professions e.g. Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Podiatry, Speech and Language Therapy, Paramedic Science, Dietetics. 

To find out to which degrees you would have a pathway in the east of Scotland, please go to SWAP East’s degree search web page. Universities in the west of Scotland will also consider applications from this programme. 

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Applied Health and Life Sciences (SWAP) NQ

I want to start in 2024/25

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at Perth College UHI. Perth College UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.