HNC/HND Architectural Technology

HNC/HND Architectural Technology

Higher National qualifications provide practical skills and theoretical knowledge that meet the needs of employers.

The HNC in Architectural Technology (SCQF level 7) develops knowledge and skills in areas such as architectural design sketching, drawing and procedures, construction technology, design of building structures, and architectural technology.

The HND in Architectural Technology (SCQF level 8) builds on the knowledge and skills of the HNC and covers influences on the development of Scottish architecture, construction technology (domestic construction/ specialist systems), mathematics, Scottish law for construction, and statutory control of buildings.

At both levels, candidates will gain contemporary vocational skills including study, research, analysis, planning and organisational skills. They will also learn to take responsibility for their own learning and develop abilities to be flexible and to work co-operatively with others.

These qualifications are available through colleges, training providers and some universities. Typically, an HNC takes one year to complete and an HND takes two years.

This HNC/HND will enable learners to achieve appropriate professional body recognition in particular, but not exclusively, from the Chartered Institute of Building.

Why deliver this qualification

Higher National qualifications have been developed by SQA in partnership with colleges, universities and industry — so employers recognise that they provide sound evidence of ability. This qualification was developed in partnership with The Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists: CIAT.


The Unit-based structure supports flexibility. A Unit is typically 40 hours of timetabled learning.

There is a wide choice of optional Units which will enable centres to offer courses tailored to meet local needs.

This HN provides progression routes to further study (see Progression).

Who does this qualification suit

The HNC programme is suitable for a wide range of learners including:

  • school leavers
  • learners progressing from a lower level award in Architectural Technology or a closely related discipline
  • adult returners to education
  • learners in employment who wish to enhance their career prospects

The HND programme is suitable for a wide range of learners including:

  • school leavers
  • learners progressing from an HNC in Architectural Technology or HNC Built  Environment or a closely related discipline
  • adult returners to education
  • learners in employment who wish to enhance their career prospects


As with all SQA qualifications, entry is at the discretion of the centre.

Different combinations of relevant National Qualifications, vocational qualifications and equivalent qualifications from other awarding bodies may be acceptable.




Learners who achieve an HNC Architectural Technology can progress to the HND in Architectural Technology.

HNCs and HNDs can provide progression to degree-level study. For example, the HNC in Architectural Technology allows direct entry into the second year of most degree programmes, and the HND in Architectural Technology allows direct entry to most third year programmes.

Higher National qualifications also provide the knowledge and understanding required for related Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs). For example:

  • HNC Architectural Technology supports the learning within SVQ 3 and SVQ 4 Construction: Technical Modern Apprenticeship Frameworks.
  • HND Architectural Technology supports learning in the SVQ 4 Construction: Technical Modern Apprenticeship Frameworks



Centres with devolved authority for approval should use their own internal approval process.

Centres without devolved authority require to come forward for approval and should contact SQA’s Business Development Team for guidance.

Assessors and verifiers must be able to meet SQA’s general requirements for technical/occupational competence as outlined in the Systems and Qualification Approval Guide.

How to assess

How to assess

Each individual Unit specification gives detailed information on the Evidence Requirements and approaches to assessment for each Unit.

Ongoing course assessment will apply.
Assessment/e-assessment support packs are available for this qualification.

Where can you take this course?

Qualification content and delivery tools


Qualification Structure

HND Architectural Technology

Group Award code: GJ5H 16

Group Award Specification


Qualification Structure

HNC Architectural Technology

Group Award code: G875 15

HND Architectural Technology

Group Award code: G87D 16

Group Award Specification

These group Awards have been replaced by GJ5N 15 and GJ5H 16 with G875 15 finishing 31/07/2017 and G87D 16 finishing 31/07/2018. Centres should note that when a Group Award is entered into its lapsing period, the following will apply:

  • the Group Award will be deleted from the relevant catalogue
  • the Group Award Arrangement document will remain until the qualification reaches its finish date at which point it will be removed form SQA website and archived
  • no new centres may be approved to offer the Group Award
  • centres should only enter candidates whom they expect to complete the Group Award during the defined lapsing period of 3 years for HNC and 4 years for HND.
Title: HNC/HND Architectural Technology
Code: G875 15 and G87D 16
Date: August 2006
Download: HNC/HND Architectural Technology Arrangements Document (1 MB)