" />

HNC Electrical & Electronics Modules (Edexcel)

HNC in Electrical & Electronics Modules by distance learning – Course Contents

HNC – Electrical & Electronic – Edexcel

It should also be said that each of these HN modules are stand alone courses and are all achievements in their own merit. They are also often used for CPD (continuous professional development) to assist career progression.  They are more commonly used as part of the HNC / HND engineering framework award by Pearson Edexcel.

The Higher National Certificate (HNC) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering (accredited by Edexcel) provides you with a programme of study over a range of disciplines to help you develop skills to progress your career through employment or further education at degree level.

The course is designed for learners who wish to work as technicians/technician engineers in electrical and electronics design, manufacture, maintenance, testing or fault finding.  It has been developed in consultation with local industry, and combines theory and practical work with the focus being on industrial applications.

What you study

You study 8 units chosen to cover the range of needs of local and national industries and business.

The HNC provides a sound understanding of all key principles including core modules in Electrical Principles, Analytical Methods, Engineering Science and a project.  Further specialist subjects may include Programmable Logic Controllers and Electronics

How you learn

You are provided with a self-contained comprehensive study pack for each of the modules. Each module consists of a folder or folders containing a series of lessons grouped into topics. Each lesson has an introduction, your aims, study advice, self-assessment questions and a summary.

It is important that you realise that open learning study requires a considerable degree of self-discipline. You must be prepared to devote both time and effort to studying not withstanding other distractions that may be present.

How you are assessed

Assessment is by a range of integrated assignments, case studies, and projects completion of these assessments is negotiated with your module tutor.

Professional accreditation

The HNC programme is a nationally recognised qualification awarded under licence from Edexcel.

Career opportunities

Students who complete this course can usually progress to the 1st year of an appropriate degree at a UK University.

An HNC award opens up the possibility of a career in a wide range of engineering disciplines including design, manufacturing, project management and IT.  The qualification provides you with the opportunity to seek career development into senior positions in national and international companies.

Entry requirements

Applicants should normally have a SQA or BTEC National Certificate in a similar or related discipline or GCSE A level qualifications in mathematics or science.  Relevant engineering experience will also be considered.

For mature students with appropriate work experience a ‘bridging’ programme in mathematics may be required.

The HNC in Electrical & Electronic Engineering consists of 8 modules:

Core modules

  • Analytical Methods for Engineers
  • Electrical and Electronic Principles
  • Engineering Science
  • Project

Optional modules

  • Application of Pneumatics and Hydraulics
  • Business Management Techniques
  • Combinational and Sequential Logic
  • Control Systems and Automation
  • Digital and Analogue Devices and Circuits
  • Distributed Control Systems
  • Electrical Machines
  • Electrical Services
  • Electrical Supply and Distribution Systems
  • Electrical System Protection
  • Electromagnetic Compatibility
  • Electronics
  • Engineering Applications
  • Engineering Design
  • Lighting
  • Mechatronic Systems Principles
  • Microprocessor Systems
  • Operational Amplifiers
  • Programmable Logic Controllers
  • Safety Engineering
  • Semiconductor Physical Electronics

Modules offered may vary.

HNC in Electrical & Electronic Engineering Brief Module Description:

  • Analytical Methods for Engineers

The primary aim of this module is to provide you with the fundamental analytical knowledge and techniques needed to successfully complete the core modules of Higher National Engineering programmes.

It is also intended as a base for the further study of analytical methods and mathematics, needed for more advanced option modules. The module is designed to enable you to use fundamental algebra, trigonometry, calculus, statistics and probability, for the analysis, modelling and solution of realistic engineering problems at Higher National level.

  • Electrical & Electronics Principles

We cover the fundamentals of electrical circuit theory, analysis of electrical circuits, give you an understanding of simple analogue and digital circuits and an appreciation of their application to engineering problems.

We look at voltage, current, power, energy, resistance and impedance.  Also, magnetic fields and inductance, electric fields and capacitance, Kirchhoff’s Laws.  We examine time varying voltages and currents, effects on inductors and capacitors, sinusoidal voltage and current use of symbolic notation.

You also study power, reactive power and apparent power, circuit analysis techniques, mesh and nodal analysis, transistors and properties of amplifiers.

Our primary method of teaching is lectures supported by laboratory sessions, tutorials, problem solving and directed learning.

You learn how to:

  • understand and use key elements of electrical and electronic theory
  • apply given tools in the solution of well defined electrical and      electronic engineering problems
  • apply numerical skills to simple electrical and electronic      engineering problems
  • use basic IT tools and specialist software to solve simple      electrical and electronic engineering problems.


  • Engineering Science

The aim of this module is to investigate a number of major scientific principles which underpin the design and operation of engineering systems.

It is a broad-based unit, covering both mechanical and electrical principles. Its intention is to give you an overview which will provide you with the basis for further study in specialist areas of engineering.

  • Project

This module develops your ability to use the knowledge and skills that you have developed at work and/or on the course to complete a realistic work project. It aims to integrate the skills and knowledge developed in other modules within a major piece of work that reflects the type of performance expected of a higher technician at work.

  • Application of Pneumatics and Hydraulics

The aim of this module is to extend students’ knowledge and understanding of fluid power systems in modern industry by investigating pneumatic and hydraulic diagrams, examining the characteristics of components and equipment, and evaluating the applications of pneumatics and hydraulics.

  • Business Management Techniques

This module develops your knowledge and understanding of the functions, structures and inter-relationships of an engineering business. It enables you to develop and apply the skills of costing, financial planning and control associated with engineered products or services.

The module also teaches you to appreciate the development of the fundamental concepts of project planning and scheduling that can be applied within an engineering organisation.

  • Combinational and Sequential Logic

This module develops the theory from a basic understanding of simple digital techniques, to more practical and complex applications of both combinational and sequential logic. It includes using manufacturers’ literature to design circuits and computer simulation to test and evaluate designs.

  • Control Systems and Automation

This module is intended to give students an insight into the principles of control engineering and how these principles can be used to model engineering systems and processes.


  • Digital and Analogue Electronic Devices

This module provides you with an understanding of a range of electronic devices and circuits used in modern electronic systems. The electronic circuits include power supplies, operational amplifiers and digital circuits. You are given the opportunity to design, build and test digital and analogue circuits during practical sessions.


  • Distributed Control Systems

The aim of this module is to investigate Distributed Control System concepts and their applications in engineering. It focuses on the design characteristics and internal architecture of Distributed Control Systems and how they interact.

Students will be provided with a learning pack where core subjects are presented in sequenced lessons that include self assessment questions with solutions to aid developmental learning. Module assessment comprises a formative element and a summative element. The formative assessment is a series of self assessment questions and answers at the end of each lesson. Feedback is also given to the students through email or by telephone. The summative assessment involves a single in course assessment comprising several elements.

  • Electrical Machines

You study electrical machines and cover all the major machines: DC, induction, and synchronous, as well as some special machines including stepper and variable reluctance motors.

You also perform in-depth investigations into machine performance and operation characteristics, in both analytical and experimental methods, using laboratory setups and software packages (Pspice & Matlab) for the analysis of DC and AC machine performance during practical sessions.

  • Electrical Services

This module provides you with a firm foundation in industrial and building electrical services installations. We place particular emphasis on adhering to appropriate British Standards and regulations concerning electrical installation services in domestic and industrial facilities.

  • Electrical Supply & Distribution Systems

This module develops the principles and practice involved in designing high and low voltage supply, transmission and distribution systems. It shows how to analyse such systems and how to co-ordinate the protection and apply tariffs for such systems. You also investigate the roles of generators, transformers, isolators and protection devices in electrical supply systems.

  • Electrical System Protection

This module analyses electrical supply systems with a view to selecting and co-ordinating system protection equipment. It shows how to analyse and resolve simple power systems into one-line impedance circuits and evaluate fault levels. It examines the role of current transformers and protection relays in electrical system protection and how to apply the principles of earthing, according to the IEE wiring regulations, to typical industrial electrical installations.

  • Electromagnetic Compatibility

This module provides electronic and electrical technicians and engineers with the underpinning theoretical knowledge and analysis tools for solving problems involving electromagnetic interference and addressing electromagnetic compatibility issues. It covers induction by crosstalk and electromagnetic fields as well as the hazards posed by electrostatic discharge. You consider circuit board design and layout, grounding and the special problems arising from digital circuits.


  • Electronics

To extend the depth of your understanding of analogue electronics, especially in the context of integrated circuits, this module covers the interaction of circuit segments (loading), temperature dependence and device variability, and how to robustly design around these problems.

You use the ‘library’ of common configurations to build larger circuits and to see how integration and component matching facilitates complex general and application-specific circuits, with examples drawn from the variety of analogue devices currently available.

Laboratories enable you to perform analysis, simulation and synthesis of relevant circuit configurations, both using components on Breadboard and by simulation in SPICE.


  • Engineering Applications

In this module, you identify individual tasks, activities, or programmes of work, whether administrative, theoretical, practical or supervisory, that you have undertaken as part of your daily working life and show how those activities have contributed to your professional engineering development. You need to document key aspects of your development to date and to critically appraise your career journey, identifying areas that may benefit from additional growth and produce an action plan for yourr ongoing professional development. You are given a learning pack with guidance to help identify and document aspects of your professional life that have contributed to your development as professional practitioner in your engineering discipline.

  • Engineering Design

The aim of this module is to give you an opportunity to experience the process of carrying out a design project. It will enable you to appreciate that design involves synthesising parameters which will affect the design solution.


  • Lighting

This module introduces you to designs for interior and exterior lighting arrangements including emergency lighting. You are also be introduced to circuit testing and certification in accordance with British Standards recommendations.

  • Mechatronic System Principles

This module introduces you to the necessary skills and principles which underpin a range of mechatronic systems. It encompasses small single component systems as well as larger systems integrating components from different engineering disciplines. You deal with the control concepts used in mechatronic systems and focus on system design and maintenance. The approach is broad-based to reflect the fact that mechatronics is, by its nature, multidisciplinary. You are encouraged to recognise a system not as an interconnection of different parts but as an integrated module.


  • Microprocessor Systems

This module provides you with an understanding of microprocessor-based systems and their use in instrumentation, control and communication systems. You study the practical aspects of device selection, programming and the interfacing of external peripheral devices. The module also introduces you to the development cycle of specify, design, build, program, test and evaluate.


  • Operational Amplifiers

This module allows you to investigate the operational amplifier and develop an understanding of the industrial applications of this versatile integrated circuit. You get an overview of the device and necessary background theory and circuit design. You get an insight into the applications aspects of the operations amplifier and its performance limitations.


  • Programmable Logic Controllers

This module investigates programmable logic controller (PLC) concepts and their applications in engineering. It focuses on the design characteristics and internal architecture of PLC systems, the signals which are used and the programming techniques. You produce and demonstrate a programme for a programmable logic device.

  • Safety Engineering

This module covers the fundamentals of contemporary Safety Engineering as applied to industrial processes. It consists of an introduction to the terminology, the nature and treatment of hazards, hazard analysis, risk assessment, emergency procedures and the application of protective measures associated with various hazards.

The main aims of the module are to provide a firm foundation for work in Safety Engineering and to act a basis for more advanced studies of safety practices.

Students will be provided with a learning pack where core subjects are presented in sequenced lessons that include self assessment questions with solutions to aid developmental learning. Module assessment comprises a formative element and a summative element. The formative assessment comprises a series of self assessment questions and answers at the end of each lesson. Feedback is also given to the students through email or by telephone. The summative assessment involves a single in course assessment comprising several elements.

Semiconductor Physical Electronics