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BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma Applied Science

A BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma is a practical, work-related course. You learn by completing projects and assignments that are based on realistic workplace situations, activities and demands. It introduces you to the employment area you have chosen and provides a good basis to go on to a more advanced work-related qualification.

A BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma is equivalent to three A levels and is normally taken as a full-time course. With further training or study, students go into careers such as Forensic Science, Food Technology, Analytical Science, Quality Control or Environmental Science.

A BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma prepares you for employment and provides a good grounding to go on to more advanced courses.

Progression from this course includes applying to Higher Education courses, university degree programmes or on to higher apprenticeships: Biotechnology, Pharmacy, Optometry, Radiotherapy and Oncology, Physiotherapy, Biomedical Science and Nursing.

Course Content

Topics Covered

This course is made up of 13 units over 2 years; 7 mandatory units and 6 optional units. Four of these units are assessed externally and nine are assessed within the college. In the first year you will study:

  • Principles and Applications of Science 1
  • Practical Scientific Techniques
  • Science Investigation Skills
  • Laboratory techniques and their applications
  • You will also study 2 optional units.

The second year will consist of 3 mandatory units and 4 optional units that will cover different aspects of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Many of the units that you will study are based on practical experiments. You will get the opportunity to carry out experiments in all 3 sciences: Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

You will have 2 external exams in Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science 1 and Unit 5: Principles and Applications of Science 2. You will also have to complete 2 controlled assessment tasks, which are set and marked by the exam board. The other units are assessed through assignments that are set by the teachers.


5 GCSEs grade 9-4, including Maths, English and Double/Triple Science. 


Progression into employment is in the following areas:

  •  Biotechnology
  •  Pharmacy
  •  Optometry
  •  Radiotherapy and Oncology
  •  Physiotherapy
  •  Biomedical Science
  •  Nursing
  •  Many more …..

The starting salary of a job in the STEM sector averages at £23,000 per year - an excellent reason to consider a career in this area.