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Public Services, Crime and Criminal Justice: HND

Course information

Course Summary

The purpose of Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Public Services is to develop students as professional, self-reflecting individuals, able to meet the demands of employers in the public sector and adapt to a constantly changing world. The qualifications aim to widen access to higher education and enhance the career prospects of those who undertake them.

Course Code:N6764
Study Type:Full Time
Academic Level:Level 5
Award:HND Public Services, Crime and Criminal Justice
Awarded by:Edexcel
Course Length

Starting September 2022.

HNC – 1 year, progressing to HND - 2 years in total

UCAS Course Code094L
UCAS Abbreviated TitleHND/PS
UCAS Institutional CodeNESCT 49
Course Detail

Holders of the Level 5 Higher National Diploma will develop a sound understanding of the principles in their field of study and will have learned to apply those principles more widely. They will have learned to evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems. They will be able to perform effectively in their chosen field and will have the qualities necessary for employment in situations requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision making.

Pearson BTEC Higher National qualifications in Public Services offer:

  • a stimulating and challenging programme of study that will be both engaging and memorable for students
  • the essential subject knowledge that students need to progress successfully into further study or the world of work
  • a simplified structure: students undertake a substantial core of learning in the Higher National Certificate and can build on this in the Higher National Diploma, with optional units linked to their specialist area of study
  • specialist units have been developed in the Level 4 Certificate and the Level 5 Diploma, so there is something to suit each student’s preference of study and future progression plans
  • refreshed content that is closely aligned with professional body, employer and higher education needs
  • assessments that consider cognitive skills (what students know) along with affective and applied skills (respectively how they behave and what they can do)
  • unit-specific grading criteria and Pearson-set assignments
  • a varied approach to assessment that supports progression to Level 6 and also allows Centres to offer assessment relevant to the local economy, thereby accommodating and enhancing different learning styles
  • Quality Assurance measures to ensure that all stakeholders (universities, colleges and students) can feel confident in the integrity and value of the qualifications
  • a qualification designed to meet the needs and expectations of students aspiring to work in a Public Services environment.

The qualification made up of 240 credits. It is studied full-time (two days a weeks) over two years. BTEC Higher Nationals consist of core units, specialist units and optional units:

  • Core units are mandatory
  • Specialist units are designed to provide a specific occupational focus to the qualification and are aligned to Professional Body standards


Year 1 Mandatory (Level 4)

Year 2 Mandatory (Level 5)

  • Organisational Structures and Culture
  • Equality, Diversity and Fair Treatment
  • Public Services in Contemporary Society (Pearson set)
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Research project (Pearson set)
  • Reflective Professional Practice
  • Justice, Punishment and Rehabilitation
  • Theories of Crime

Year 1 –  Specialist

Year 2 – Optional

  • Law and Legal Systems
  • Crime Reduction and Community Safety
  • Serious and Organised Crime
  • Expedition Planning
  • Youth Offending

Year 1 – Optional

  • Responding to Emergencies
  • Psychology of Behaviour

Additional Courses and Trips Available

  • First Aid
  • Mental Health First Aid
  • Houses of Parliament
  • The Supreme Court
  • Crown Court

(subject to additional hours)

Course Fees


Field trips and uniform costing approx £800

Full fee information here

Entry Requirements

64 UCAS points


MPP (L3 Extended Diploma)

MM (L3 Diploma)

GCSE English at grade 4 (C)

Your Next Steps

Each Higher National unit has a clear purpose to cater for the increasing need for high quality professional and technical education pathways at levels 4 and 5, providing students with a clear line of sight to employment or progression to a degree at level 6.

On successful completion of the Level 5 Higher National Diploma, students can develop their careers in the public services sector through:

  • Entering employment
  • Continuing existing employment
  • Linking with the appropriate Professional Body
  • Committing to Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
  • Progressing to university (subject to individual entry criteria)
Other Information

Last updated - 12/10/2021