Undergraduate HNC

HNC Construction

School of the Built Environment




Eight month

20 month


September 2019

Next enrolment

In a nutshell

If you're thinking about starting a career in construction and property, returning to education or want to progress in industry, then our HNC Construction course is ideal for you.

Delivered by one of the UK's leading centres for construction education, you'll study a wide range of construction-related topics. The course is aligned with the requirements of construction-related roles, and provides training in the technical and practical elements to satisfy industry and employer needs.

If you successfully complete this course, you can progress to one of our built environment degrees, specialising in construction, architecture or surveying.

You will:
  • Study a range of modules which will develop your professional and technical competencies, ready to build a career in the construction industry
  • Build your knowledge about the practicalities and legalities involved in constructing, managing and maintaining a site
  • Understand the scientific and technological aspects of construction and property
  • Learn about financial aspects such as tendering, estimating and property valuation
  • Develop your presentation, communication and interpersonal skills

options available


students accepted

This is for you if...


You have a passion for construction and want to work in the built environment


You want to explore the technologies and techniques used in the construction process


You want to develop professional and technical skills ready for a career in the construction industry

Course details

All about the course

The course is designed for full-time and part-time students with little or no previous knowledge of construction. 

The full-time course delivered over eight months will give the platform to progress in construction. We will introduce you to the construction processes and practical industry knowledge using a range of credit modules. Module content includes construction technology, building services, legal and contractual procedures, and management. You'll also use the knowledge you've gained on the course to complete a final project.

If you choose the part-time route, you will complete modules across a second year of study.

Year One

Construction Technology in Architecture

This module will equip you with the essential knowledge and skills necessary to explain building construction techniques and materials used. You will also develop an understanding of various contemporary and historic construction techniques related to both project delivery and environmental considerations.

Building Services

Through this module you will develop knowledge and understanding of the interactions between a building and its internal and external environments. You will develop an awareness of the physical and personal requirements for thermal and environmental comfort. It will provide you with a fundamental understanding of the principles involved in building heat transfer, illumination and acoustics. You will explore the need for services within the building envelope and develop an understanding of typical building services systems technology. You will also develop knowledge and understanding of the wide spectrum of H.V.A.C. Engineering Services available for installation in today’s buildings. You will develop an ability to appraise and critically analyse the choices available to the engineer when selecting systems to meet a services specification. You will also investigate how changes in building design affect the interrelationship between it and its engineering services.

Legal and Contractual Procedures

The aim of this module is for you to develop a working knowledge of the nature and purpose of various legal requirements, and the type of procurement arrangements that are used in the construction industry. The module will assist you to demonstrate a knowledge, understanding and application of the various arrangements, options and strategies that are adopted in the procurement of projects. The varying procurement arrangements available will be considered throughout the design and construction periods from inception to the completion of the contract.

Management in Construction

This module will introduce you to production management principles, tools and techniques. You will be able to understand the principles and application of effective site management and examine the management of time for the production manager and identify the techniques, reasons and benefits of effective time management. You will explore quality, environment, health safety and welfare, in relation to production management. The module will also introduce you to the process of design and the principles of design management and the economic environment in which the construction and property industries operate. You will examine and explore economic management and the the construction and property industries and the influence of macro economic policy.

Professional Practice Project

You will explore the concept of the practitioner and the alignment the personal and professional development. Using a project scenario, you will gain awareness of contemporary issues and developments in the built environment sector and understand their significance and impact on your future professional conduct.

Year One (Part-Time)

Construction Technology in Architecture

This module will equip you with the essential knowledge and skills necessary to explain building construction techniques and materials used. You will also develop an understanding of various contemporary and historic construction techniques related to both project delivery and environmental considerations.

Professional Practice

This module deals with the public and academic aspects of the literary arts, including topics such as:

  • The public value of the arts
  • Marketing, publishing and networking
  • Writing a research proposal
  • Effective oral presentations
Year Two (Part-Time)

Introduction to Building Services and Systems

You will learn about the environmental factors which influence decision making with regard to Building Services and Systems. You will develop an understanding of thermal and environmental comfort systems which address ecological challenges. You will gain awareness of the impact of heat transfer, illumination and acoustics on buildings and their users. You will be able to demonstrate how building typology informs building systems and performance of building envelopes.


The final year project is your opportunity to carry out, under supervision, an extended study into an agreed topic relating to your degree. You will complete independent investigation to demonstrate initiative and the skills and knowledge acquired elsewhere in the course. The project provides invaluable experience in the planning and delivery of a major study that solves a problem with a unique solution.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?


You will develop your knowledge and skills through a blend of theoretical, collaborative and practical methods:

  • Studio projects
  • Projects with other built environment students
  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Directed study
  • One-to-one tutorials (by appointment)
  • Guest lecturers and visits to construction sites, product manufacturing plants etc.


You will be assessed through a combination of exams, projects and coursework:

  • Projects
  • Essays
  • Case study analysis
  • Examinations

School Overview

The School of the Built Environment (SoBE) aims to transform the quality of life for society and the wellbeing of future generations through a better and more sustainable urban future. With a focus on architecture, building and construction, SoBE has over 1,000 undergraduates, 800 postgraduates, and over 200 PhD research students from across the world. Having led the built environment research agenda for more than 20 years, our rich community of internationally-recognised scholars works with students, business and industry across all levels of study and research.



Energy House is the only full-scale building in an environmental chamber in Europe, and the only full-scale brick-built test facility in a controlled environment in the world. Capable of replicating almost any weather condition, it is used for testing new materials, systems and products as well as looking at behaviour change associated with energy efficiency measures in the home.


Think Lab is our futuristic research environment. This advanced facility leads research in advanced technology platforms for smart city applications, collaborative engineering, collaboration environments, serious game applications, interactive learning and training.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?


An increasing number of employers are hiring HNC graduates with good technical knowledge and related computer skills, and these employees play a key role in the construction industry.

Our graduates have gone on to work for many local and national organisations, including Balfour Beatty, Bramhall Construction, Laing O'Rourke, Manchester City Council, New Charter Housing Ltd, Northwards Housing and United Utilities.


We have a range of specialism postgraduate study options to take your career even further. We offer a fee discount to our graduates and alumni.

A taste of what you could become

A Construction Manager

A Site Manager

A Contractor

A Project Technician

and more...

Career Links

This course is extensively informed by collaboration between the university’s academics and industry partners from the built environment. Our experienced teaching team maintain strong links with the architecture, engineering and construction sectors, both local and international.

This collaboration with the professions ensures a stimulating range of external guest lecturers, as well as career networking opportunities. You will benefit from field visits, practitioner-led lectures and real-world problem-solving work developed for and by industry.  

Recent industry partners have included:

  • Bramhall Construction
  • United Utilities
  • Wates Construction
  • Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB)
  • Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)

What you need to know

Applicants must have a minimum grade C/level 4 pass in English and Mathematics at GCSE (or equivalent). There are no specific A-level topics required.

We positively welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to successfully pursue a programme of study in higher education. Students who do not have formal entry qualifications are required to sit a written assessment to measure their suitability. Please contact Admissions for further information.

Entry Requirements

UCAS tariff points

72 points

GCE A level

72 points (typically BC or DDD)

BTEC National Diploma


BTEC Higher National Diploma


Scottish Highers

72 points equivalent

Irish Leaving Certificate

72 points equivalent

International Baccalaureate

24 points


Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home/EU 2019 £9,250per year
Full-time international 2019 £12,600per year
Part-time 2019 Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying
Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Apply now

All Set? Let's Apply?

UCAS Code: K2N3

Start Date(s): September


Eight months full-time

20 months part-time

Enrolment dates

September 2019

September 2020

UCAS information

Course ID K2N3

Institution S03