SCQF Level 8
Enterprise and Commerce

Course Overview

The PDA is aimed at 6th-year pupils

This PDA is designed to introduce candidates to a selection of topics and areas of debates that inform contemporary justice. Candidates will examine how crime and criminal justice have been theorised and then consider theoretical explanations of crime causation and criminalisation. The aims of the criminal justice and the penal system will also be covered.

The PDA also supports the development of other higher-order skills that are useful in many employment situations. Skills such as data handling, critical analysis and complex thinking skills are developed and achieved through the complexity of the material being covered as well as the activities inherent in the delivery and assessment of the subject matter. The PDA requires a candidate to go beyond the basic knowledge and understanding to analysis and evaluation of conflicting theories. Skills such as problem-solving, research skills and reaching conclusions are advantageous in many occupations. These are transferable skills, not specific to one situation but adaptable for a variety of situations. It is these skills that employers want their staff to demonstrate. The PDA supports the growth of these competencies.

What You Will Learn


  • Scottish Legal Systems
  • Criminology
  • Scottish Criminal Law
  • Legal Research and Writing







Entry Requirements
  • This course is aimed at 6th-year students looking to study a college courses
  • 2 relevant Highers
  • Supporting reference
  • Consideration of access will be based on the interest and ability of a candidate to undertake the particular Units
English Proficiency Requirements
  • ILETS 6.0
How the course is assessed

The design principles for HN have encouraged a more holistic approach to assessment and, where appropriate for assessment purposes, a wide variety of possible ways of gathering evidence has been made available. These will involve either open-book or closed-book assessment instruments. This allows candidates to experience a range of assessment and helps them to develop different skills, which should be transferable to the next step of higher education or to employment. 

Information on Test/Auditions/Interview Requirements

Applicants will be required to attend course induction sessions and  participate in a selection process. You will be notified in advance of the details.

Progression And Articulation Routes

The achievement of the SCQF level 8 PDA could contribute towards the achievement of the HNC or HND in Legal Services or Social Sciences, or HNC in Police Studies depending on the combination of Units achieved although other Units, which are not part of the PDA, would have to be achieved to obtain the HNC or HND.


An HNC could then lead onto the corresponding HND and both the HNC 


Career Opportunities

Market research also continues to show that employers, in both the public and private sector, accept the relevance of the HNC and HND in Legal Services or Social Sciences. Similarly market research demonstrates that such qualifications could be useful to paralegals as the Units provide them with some of the practical skills required by employers, as well as opening the door to other vocational opportunities existing in administrative or supervisory/management roles in business, finance, the commercial or public sector and the Police. Skills such as communication, time management and the ability to work with others were said to be fundamental to a candidate’s employment prospects.

Number Of Days Per Week

This course is delivered via open learning. You will be required to attend college for an introduction to the course and meet your tutor for the course. You may also be required to attend college to complete assessments. Drop-in support sessions will be available with the tutor if required. 

Course Delivery
GRANTON x x x x x
MIDLOTHIAN x x x x x
MILTON RD x x x x x
SIGHTHILL x x x x x
x x x

Courses may be subject to alteration or cancellation

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To apply please download an SCP application form and contact your guidance teacher who will support you through your application.

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