Top-up degrees

Top up your existing qualification to a full honours degree from a top 50 UK University (Guardian University Guide 2024). Benefit from the University's outstanding facilities and learn from research-active staff. Graduate qualified for degree-level jobs in your chosen field.

A group of Nursing top-up students having a discussion during a classroom seminar

What is a top-up degree?

Top-up degrees are equivalent to the final year of a three-year undergraduate degree and allow you to 'top up' an existing qualification into a full honours degree.

If you currently hold a Level 5 qualification, such as a foundation degree or an HND, which are equivalent to the first two years of a degree, you may wish to top up to apply for graduate-level roles or to look at postgraduate study or research opportunities.

Topping up your qualifications can provide you with the extra skills and experience you'll need in your next professional role.

A computer science student coding on dual screens while another student watches over their shoulder

Why study a top-up degree at Sunderland?

Choose from a wide range of subjects and courses, with areas including nursing, business and management, computer science, and engineering.

Benefit from state-of-the-art facilities at both City Campus and the Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter's. Nursing and healthcare facilities at City Campus include the Living Lab and Helen McArdle House, where you can find mock hospital wards, pharmacy dispensaries, and hi-fidelity immersive simulation suites. Over at the Sir Tom Cowie Campus, the David Goldman Technology Centre is home to engineering labs (including electronics, mechanical, and product development), computer science labs (including new networks and cyber zone), as well as a 3D interactive igloo that immerses you in a 360-degree screen and sound system.

Five social sciences students sitting around a table having a group discussion

Flexible learning

You'll be taught by research-active staff, and benefit from our partnerships and strong links with major companies, including Sony, CISCO, Sage, and Nissan.

There are opportunities for flexible learning as many of our top-up courses are offered on a part-time basis, so you can study while you work and manage other life commitments.

You can apply by finding us on UCAS (institution code S84) or by selecting the 'Apply now' button on the relevant course page.

Why us?

Top 50

We're a top 50 UK University

(Guardian University Guide 2024)
Top 20

We’re in the top 20 UK universities for mature students

(The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024)
1st

We're 1st in the north-east for student satisfaction

(Complete University Guide 2024)

Our top-up students

Hear from top-up students about their experiences of studying with us:

Arts and Creative Industries

BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Benefit from Sunderland’s expert teaching without leaving your home region. You’ll study a wide range of modules with flexible options to suit your interests, including Visual Communication, Motion Graphics and Branding. Acquire valuable skills relevant to a career in Design, while working toward a BA (Hons) degree.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-Up) via Study Centres
communications
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Mass Communications (Top-Up)

Top-up your existing qualification to a full honours degree. Mix academic rigour with practical skills. Undertake a CV-enhancing work placement. Gain a comprehensive understanding of new media, cultural theory and popular culture, and their increasing significance in contemporary culture and society. Acquire new skills using industry-standard equipment.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Mass Communications (Top-Up)
BA (Hons) Music 1 Year Top-Up
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Music (Top-Up)

Top up your HND or Foundation Degree to full honours in Music. Build skills, complete work placements and graduate as a skilled candidate with extensive dance experience.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Music (Top-Up)

Business, Law and Tourism

A student smiling at someone off camera
Full-time

BA (Hons) Accounting and Financial Management (Top-Up)

Top-up your HND (or similar) to a full honours degree. Develop your expertise in business problem-solving and decision-making. Enhance skills in a variety of areas. Leave the course a highly employable graduate with a variety of skills and expertise.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Accounting and Financial Management (Top-Up)
Students working at computers
Full-time

BA (Hons) Banking and Finance (Top-Up)

Turn your HND into a full honours degree in banking and finance. Build on your existing skills. Study in the area that you’re passionate about. Become a complete candidate with support from our Student Academic Advisors.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Banking and Finance (Top-Up)
A student sitting in a lecture
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Banking and Finance (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Benefit from Sunderland Business School’s expertise in banking and finance without leaving your home region. Cover theories and their limitations, important concepts and how to respond to practical issues within banking and finance.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Banking and Finance (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Students sitting listening in a classroom
Full-time

BA (Hons) Business and Marketing (Stage 3)

Build on your existing knowledge.  Enhance your expertise with specialist modules. Complete your studies at our highly-regarded business school. Graduate with a full honours degree and a new range of practical and theoretical knowledge.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Business and Marketing (Stage 3)
A student looking at a computer screen
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Business and Marketing (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Do you live in Singapore or Sri Lanka and want to study Business and Marketing? Benefit from Sunderland’s esteemed course without leaving your home country. Boost your career by ‘topping-up’ your existing knowledge and skills while earning a BA (Hons) degree.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Business and Marketing (Top-Up) via Study Centres
A student standing outside, smiling
Full-time

BA (Hons) Business Management (Stage 3)

Top up your HND (or similar) to a full honours degree. Build on your existing knowledge. Take advantage of our MAPS programmes to make yourself a complete candidate.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Business Management (Stage 3)
A student resting his chin on his hand
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Business Management (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Take advantage of Sunderland’s expertise and study Business Management without leaving your home region. Cover a combination of broad business knowledge and skills that foster success in management, while undertaking modules related to project management, strategic management and more.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Business Management (Top-Up) via Study Centres
A view across the River Wear towards Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter's at night
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) International Tourism and Hospitality Management (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Benefit from Sunderland’s excellence in the teaching of tourism without leaving your home region or country. Learn the fundamentals of International Hospitality Management as you cover a broad range of topics such as strategic planning for tourism and leisure, e-tourism and leadership and management for the hospitality industry.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) International Tourism and Hospitality Management (Top-Up) via Study Centres
A student sitting at a computer, smiling
Full-time

BSc (Hons) International Tourism and Hospitality Management (Top-Up)

Top-up your Higher National Diploma or Travel, Tourism or Hospitality degree to a full degree with this one year course. Fully prepare yourself for a career in this fast-paced industry.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) International Tourism and Hospitality Management (Top-Up)
A hand moving a computer mouse on a desk
Full-time

MBA Top-Up

The MBA degree is one of the most prestigious and sought-after postgraduate degrees in the field of management and leadership. The applied nature of our MBA course will build on your previous managerial experience while moving you forward on a journey of practical professional development. 

Find out more about MBA Top-Up
Students in a lecture theatre
Full-time/Part-time

MBA Master of Business Administration (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Do you hold a Diploma in Management Studies or equivalent qualification and want to top up to a full MBA? This course combines academic rigour with vocational relevance, as you build on your previous managerial experience.

Find out more about MBA Master of Business Administration (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Two students in class smiling and laughing sitting at their desk
Full-time

MBA Top-Up (DL)

The MBA degree is one of the most prestigious and sought-after postgraduate degrees in the field of management and leadership. The applied nature of our MBA course will build on your previous managerial experience while moving you forward on a journey of practical professional development. 

Find out more about MBA Top-Up (DL)

Education and Society

Three primary school boys sitting around a classroom table
Full-time/Part-time

BA (Hons) Childhood and Society Studies (Top-Up)

Want to top-up a Foundation Degree to a full honours degree? Take advantage of a degree-level opportunity for professional development that is perfect if you are working with young people in the early years or primary education sectors. Take up an optional pathway in Early Childhood Graduate Practitioner Competencies.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Childhood and Society Studies (Top-Up)
Police officers
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) Policing Studies (Top-Up)

Examine the most important issues facing modern policing. Gain an undergraduate degree qualification in one year of study. Strengthen your professional practice.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Policing Studies (Top-Up)

Health Sciences and Wellbeing

A close up of a student sitting amongst other students working on computers
Full-time

BA (Hons) Counselling (Top-Up)

Top-up a Foundation Degree in Counselling to a full honours degree, whilst still having the time to complete work experience whilst you study. Build on your existing knowledge, enhance your practice and reflect more widely on your professional development.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Counselling (Top-Up)
BSc (Hons) Nursing 1 Year Top-Up
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) Nursing (Top-Up)

Improve your current Nursing qualification. Enhance your career prospects. Top-up your current diploma to an honours degree in only one year. Join many of our graduates who have gone on to secure senior positions in nursing.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Nursing (Top-Up)
A Nursing student smiling
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) Nursing (Top-Up) via Study Centres

'Top-up' your registered nursing qualification to a full honours degree in one year. This course places a strong emphasis on relating nursing theory to clinical practice. Degree qualifications are becoming increasingly vital for moving up to senior positions and our graduates have a strong record of career progression.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Nursing (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Technology and Engineering

BEng (Hons) Electronic and Electrical Engineering - Top-up
Full-time/Part-time

BEng (Hons) Electronic and Electrical Engineering (Top-Up)

Widen your understanding of how electronics work, and grow your knowledge of electronic principles. Broaden your experiences by learning about other engineering disciplines, and put your skills to the test by managing and performing a project in your final year.

Find out more about BEng (Hons) Electronic and Electrical Engineering (Top-Up)
A group of engineering students and an engineering academic are looking at a piece of equipment together in the mechanical lab
Full-time/Part-time

BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering (Top-Up)

This course allows you to top-up your existing qualification to a full honours degree in one year. You'll cover topics such as mechanics, design and materials and gain skills and knowledge required by professional engineers.

Find out more about BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering (Top-Up)
Applied Business Computing (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) Applied Business Computing (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Benefit from Sunderland’s teaching of computing from your home country. Like all courses taught at the University of Sunderland, this one-year course develops a blend of theory and practice, allowing you to boost your career by ‘topping-up’ your existing knowledge and skills while earning a BSc Honours degree.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Applied Business Computing (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Two students working on computers
Full-time

BSc (Hons) Computer Systems Engineering (Top-Up)

Enhance your skills with our industry-standard software to build a range of software systems, hone your talents in project management, and put your knowledge to the test to find solutions to real-life problems, all while working towards a BSc Honours degree.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Computer Systems Engineering (Top-Up)
Computer Systems Engineering (Top-Up) via Study Centres
Full-time/Part-time

BSc (Hons) Computer Systems Engineering (Top-Up) via Study Centres

Do you want to study Computer Systems Engineering delivered by a respected UK university? Benefit from Sunderland’s expertise without leaving your home country. Enhance your skills, build a range of software systems, and work with industry-standard software. We’ll encourage you to develop your skills and support you while you work towards earning a BSc Honours degree.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Computer Systems Engineering (Top-Up) via Study Centres
BSc (Hons) Network Systems (1 Year Top-Up)
Full-time

BSc (Hons) Network Systems (Top-Up)

Top-up your HND or Foundation Degree in a computer networking discipline to a BSc (Hons) with our one-year course. You'll still have access to our state-of-the-art Cisco networking equipment and a Microsoft Visual Studio, placing you at the cutting edge of industry which will allow you to make an impact in your chosen field straight away.

Find out more about BSc (Hons) Network Systems (Top-Up)