Lifelong Learning Centre

BA Interdisciplinary Studies

PHE Students in class
Course duration 1 Years part-time

Interdisciplinary Studies, formerly known as Preparation for Higher Education (PHE), is specially designed to help you gain the knowledge, skills and confidence that you need to progress to the University of Leeds. Because this course is an extended degree with a foundation year it removes the need to study an access course before applying to university.

What will I study?
All students study the Academic and Personal Development module, designed to help you to develop and reflect on your academic study skills so you are ready for university. Students also study a module on either Data Handling or Applied Information Literacy. In addition, you study one of the following modules:

  • People in Society which introduces you to writing in an academic context through studying in a sociology context.
  • Introduction to Psychology which equips students with the knowledge and skills to successfully undertake the psychology undergraduate degree.
  • Human Biology which is necessary for students wanting to go on to study healthcare-related programmes
  • Understanding Child Development and Learning for those wishing to pursue a career in teaching and/or childhood studies.

To see the full entry in the programme catalogue click here.

How will I be taught?
You study in a friendly atmosphere alongside other adults with support from your tutors to develop your independent learning skills and progress to a degree programme. Tutors will make each session interactive and also provide additional online resources and activities through the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. Individual tutor support is offered throughout the degree.

How will I be assessed?
Assessments are designed to support you in developing your academic skills. They include discussion forums, learning journals, short essays, seen exam questions and independent research projects.

Progression to further study
The programme is the first year of an extended degree programme designed that begins with an intensive preparatory year with the Lifelong Learning Centre (LLC) followed by progression to a standard degree programme in an academic school. Successful former PHE students have gone on to study a variety of subjects here at the University of Leeds from a range of subject areas including Healthcare, Arts and Humanities and Education.


University of Leeds graduates continue to have a very good reputation amongst employers. According to the 2012 High Fliers survey, Leeds is the 11th ‘most-targeted’ university by the UK’s top graduate employers, and in the 2011 QS World University Rankings, Leeds ranked 51st for the employer review score and came 13th out of the UK universities.

To read more about employability please see

Further information

Please contact the Lifelong Learning Centre

Phone: (0113) 343 3212