HERIOT-WATT has partnered with Fife College and Fife Council to create a new pathway to university for students.

The new proposals, one of the first of its kind between a university, college and local authority, will ease transition for young people between school, college and university.

Pupils in Fife who achieve an HNC in Software Development during their fifth and sixth year, can progress directly into the second year of a new HND programme at Fife College, and then go straight into third year of Heriot-Watt's BSc Computer Systems Honours programme.

The new pathway forms part of the Edinburgh university’s commitment to non-standard entry via further education institutions, and it is hoped that more colleges will adopt the pathway.

It should also help expand access to university for disadvantaged learners, who are more likely to start their further education in college rather than university.

Greg Michaelson, Professor of Computer Science at Heriot-Watt, said: “We are delighted to announce this new partnership approach in Fife to help progression from schools through to colleges and onwards to university.

"Heriot-Watt University has been nurturing relationships with schools and colleges for many years and we are keen to simplify pathways to the university that will particularly encourage and assist young people from under-represented backgrounds.

"This new pathway adds to an already strong and flexible portfolio of access agreements encouraging a wider group of prospective students into higher education.”

Sharon Burns, Curriculum Manager at Fife College, said: “Many of our students who complete an HND in Software Development choose to continue their studies at university.

"To this end we have been delighted to work with Heriot Watt University on developing this pathway into the BSc Computer Systems Honours programme.”