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- Education and learning
- Apprenticeships, 14 to 19 education and training for work
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Check which board to contact for a replacement certificate or certified statement of results if your old board no longer exists.
Contact AQA if your old exam board was one of the following:
- Associated Examinations Board ( AEB )
- Southern Examining Group ( SEG )
- South East Regional Examinations Board ( SEREB )
- South Western (Regional) Examinations Board ( SWExB )
- Associated Lancashire Schools Examining Board ( ALSEB )
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Council for Curriculum and Examinations Assessment ( CCEA )
Contact the CCEA if your old exam board was one of the following:
- Northern Ireland School Examinations and Assessment Council ( NISEAC )
- Northern Ireland School Examinations Council ( NISEC )
Contact Pearson Edexcel if your old exam board was one of the following:
- Business Education Council ( BEC )
- Business and Technology Education Council ( BTEC )
- Education Development International (EDI)
- Joint Committee for Business Studies and Public Administration ( JCBSPA )
- London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
- London East Anglia Group ( LEAG )
- London Regional Examining Board ( LREB )
- Metropolitan and Middlesex Regional Examining Boards ( M&MREB )
- Technician Education Council ( TEC )
- University Entrance and Schools Examinations Council ( UESEC )
- University of London Examinations and Assessment Council ( ULEAC )
- University of London Schools Examination Board ( ULSEB )
Oxford, Cambridge and RSA Exams ( OCR )
Contact OCR if your old exam board was one of the following:
- East Midland Regional Examinations Board ( EMREB )
- Midland Examining Group ( MEG )
- Oxford and Cambridge Examinations and Assessment Council ( OCEAC )
- Oxford and Cambridge Schools Examination Board ( OCSEB )
- Royal Society of Arts ( RSA )
- Southern Regional Examinations Board ( SREB )
- Southern Universities Joint Board for Schools Examinations ( SUJB )
- University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate ( UCLES )
- University of Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations ( UODLE )
- West Midlands Examinations Board ( WMEB )
If your exam board was the East Anglian Examinations Board (EAEB), contact either Pearson Edexcel or OCR - they both hold some of the records.
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Business and Technology Education Council
An awarding body for the further education sector formed in 1974 as a result of a merger between the Business Education Council (BEC) and the Technician Education Council (TEC). It now operates under the name of Edexcel and, having taken over the examination of the General Certificate of Education (GCE) Advanced Level (A level) and General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE), formerly carried out by the University of London Schools’ Examination Board in 1995, it is now one of the three unitary awarding bodies which offer both academic and vocational qualifications in both the schools and the further education sectors. During the 1980s and early 1990s BTEC awards in a range of general vocational areas such as business studies and sports studies formed one of the few alternative progression routes into higher education available to those who did not choose to study for GCE A levels. A BTEC First Diploma claimed equivalence with four or five good GCSE passes, and provided a means of progression to either A levels or a BTEC National Diploma, which some universities accepted, at distinction level, for the purpose of university entry, as the equivalent of two sound A level passes. On the introduction of the General National Vocational Qualification (GNVQ) in 1993, BTEC initially resisted allowing their qualifications to be subsumed under the GNVQ umbrella; and it is a measure of its reputation that many providers continued to refer to these BTEC qualifications by their original BTEC titles even after they had been endorsed as GNVQs. In some vocational areas, the qualifications remained as BTEC National awards, while others, such as the BTEC National Health and Social Care, have survived the demise of the GNVQ to re‐emerge with the original BTEC title.
From: Business and Technology Education Council in A Dictionary of Education »
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What is a BTEC? Education
The acronym BTEC stands for Business and Technology Education Council. BTECs are work-related qualifications that combine both practical learning with academic learning.
There are multiple levels of BTEC qualifications in a whole range of sectors. These range from entry-level through to level 7, which is equivalent to postgraduate study at university.
There are currently 3 main levels of study for BTEC. These are:
- BTEC Firsts
- BTEC Nationals
- BTEC Apprenticeships
Who are BTECs for?
BTECs are for individuals who are looking to start a career in a certain sector. They can be studied as just one course, or alongside other qualifications such as GCSEs and A-Levels.
Do I need any qualifications to do a BTEC?
Entry requirements for BTECs depend on the type of course you’d like to do and which level you are taking. If you are looking at school or colleges or considering studying for a BTEC with a training provider, they will let you know what the entry requirements are and support you to gain these if you haven’t already.
Where could a BTEC take me?
There are a number of options available to individuals who complete a BTEC. This depends on the level they are at and where they would like to go next. Some students move on to employment or continue to study further.
What areas can I do a BTEC in?
There are over 2,000 BTEC qualifications available in a number of sectors including business, childcare, health and social care, public services, travel and tourism, construction and more!
Learn More About BTECs with Building Better Opportunities
If you are unemployed, live in Stafford or South Staffordshire, and would like to progress your career through personal development and training , we can help! At Building Better Opportunities, we can support you to gain a place on a BTEC course in the sector of your choosing and work with you to create a personal development plan in line with your goals.
To find out more, just give us a call today or fill in our contact form to request a callback!
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Getting a Great Job Without a Degree
Over the past few decades, there’s been a real push to get people into university. Not only has th
What is a BTEC?
The acronym BTEC stands for Business and Technology Education Council. BTECs are work-related qualif
BTEC (Business and Technology Education Council) is an International qualification from Pearson Education Ltd, UK. BTECs originated in 1984 and were awarded by Edexcel* in 1996. Their origins lie in the Business Education Council, formed in 1974 to “rationalise and improve the relevance of sub-degree vocational education”.
BTECs are specialist work-related qualifications that combine practical learning with subject and theory content. There are over 2,000 BTEC qualifications across 16 sectors – they are available from entry level through to professional qualifications at level 7 (equivalent to postgraduate study).
BTEC qualifications are accepted by 95% of universities in the UK and recognized by leading professional bodies and international employers all around the world, enabling students to successfully pursue their chosen career.
They are equivalent to qualifications such as the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) (levels 1 to 2), A Level (level 3) and university degrees (levels 6 to 7). 390+ prestigious universities across the US, UK, Australia and other nations recognise BTEC qualifications for direct entry into degree courses.
BTEC courses focus on skill-based learning and are designed around thematic units. For this reason formal examinations are not conducted, instead focusing on project based assessments . In this way, understanding and application of knowledge is tested which also makes the process more engaging. This practical and hands on approach allows BTEC learners to develop skills that employers and universities are looking for, providing plenty of opportunities to learn, improve and succeed.
90% of BTEC students are employed full-time after graduating. Employers value BTEC qualifications more because courses are industry-directed and give students industry-specific knowledge/skills making them readily employable. BTEC prepares students for the dynamic job market wherein courses develop a student’s employability skills, offering real-life experiences, practical tasks and work placements.
BTEC Higher National Diplomas can top up to over 1500 degrees worldwide now.
Edexcel*: Awarding Body
Edexcel is the UK’s largest awarding organisation offering academic and vocational qualifications in schools, colleges and work places in the UK and abroad. It is a qualification brand for academic and generation qualifications from Pearson, now standing as one of Pearson’s leading brands.
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The BTEC qualification combines practical learning with theory work and study.
A BTEC is perfect if you enjoy a more hands-on approach to study and know what sector of work you want to get into and is similar to a DipHE or a Certificate of Higher Education .
What is a BTEC?
BTEC stands for Business and Technology Education Council and a BTEC specifically, is a specialist work-related qualification. The BTEC diploma combines practical with theoretical learning. A BTEC usually covers 15 sectors and will have over 2,000 different qualifications.
The sectors covered by BTECs are:
- Applied sciences
- Art and Design
- Health and Social Care
- Performing Arts
- Public services
- Travel and Tourism
BTEC qualifications are designed for young people who are interested in a certain industry or sector or job, but aren’t sure what the specific job they want is. BTEC results day usually falls into the month of August, although the date changes every year.
The different types of BTEC
There are three types of BTEC available to students, which are:
- BTEC Firsts : These are available at entry level through to BTEC Level 2 and provide an introduction to work. They are equivalent to GCSE level and alongside other qualifications can lead to further study, work or an apprenticeship.
- BTEC Nationals : Available from BTEC Level 3, this BTEC Extended Diploma level is compared to A-Levels and is a well-recognised achievement by universities, colleges and employers. The BTEC National qualification is ideal for those wanting to go straight into work or higher education once completed.
- BTEC Apprenticeships : With over 25 sectors at this standard, a BTEC Apprenticeship covers Level 2-5. This more specialist level is often available at higher education facilities.
There are more than 2,000 BTEC courses available, but some of the most popular BTEC national diplomas are in those subject areas that are expected to have high demand in the labour market over the next decade. These include BTECs in computing, construction, health and social care, and engineering.
How do I know if a BTEC is right for me?
BTEC courses have a practical focus and suit people who enjoy hands-on learning. You may also find that BTEC levels are a good option for you if you tend to do better in coursework than when taking exams. In short, if you enjoy learning by doing rather than studying academic subjects, a BTEC can be a good fit.
Can I study a BTEC online?
Some educational institutions (but not all) offer BTECs as part of their distance learning course options. Training is usually delivered using an online platform, which you can also use to upload your coursework and to hold one-to-one sessions with your tutors.
BTEC courses have a practical focus and suit people who enjoy hands-on learning.
What are the employment prospects like?
Due to their practical focus, BTECs are a recognised route into the job market. Many UK employers understand the value of vocational qualifications like a BTEC meaning your chances of finding employment are usually good once you have a Level 3 qualification.
When will I study a BTEC?
You can study for a BTEC at any point in your life, and there are several different ways that you can study for a BTEC Diploma. They can be studied alongside education, as part of an apprenticeship or you can study them as a standalone course. You are most likely to study these at a school or college and are perfect for those wanting to gain a more hands-on approach.
If you are aged 14-16 and want to gain a BTEC alongside your GCSE studies, you can study for the entry-level BTEC First in one or two subjects.
Between the ages of 16 and 19, you can study for either a BTEC First or a BTEC Extended Diploma (BTEC Level 3) at a college or further education centre alongside your GCSEs, A Levels or other academic qualifications.
If you are over 19, you can still study for a BTEC, either BTEC Nationals (BTEC Level 3) or a higher award at a college or university. Achieving a BTEC is a good way to gain specialist professional based learning.
Once you have started studying for a BTEC, it is worth asking your BTEC personal tutor for your BTEC registration number. It is essential that you make a note of your BTEC registration number, particularly if you are planning on applying for further study, as this will be required on any application forms.
How long does a BTEC take to study?
Depending on your circumstances, a BTEC will typically take one or two years to study. You can choose to study for a BTEC either on a full or part-time basis, this allows for flexibility within your current situation.
If you have chosen to study full time you will usually complete the BTEC in a single year; however, if you are studying for a BTEC on a part-time basis due to work commitments or another study, you can complete the BTEC in two years. A BTEC Extended Diploma can take up to three years to complete, you can leave after one, but you will not receive the full qualification.
How should I choose what to study for my BTEC?
Unlike GCSEs and A Levels, where you will choose several subjects, you will study one BTEC and with thousands of different subjects open to you and it can feel daunting when choosing which course is the right one for you.
The first step to take, is to decide what sector you wish to work within, from BTEC Sport to BTEC Biochemistry there are several different sectors to choose from.
A BTEC can also mean that you could potentially look into the possibilities of a:
- Applied science degree
- Art and design degree
- Business degree
- Childcare degree
- Construction degree
- Engineering degree
- Media degree
- Health and social care degree
- Hospitality degree
- Land-based degree
- Performing arts degree
- Public services degree
- Sport degree
- Travel and tourism degree
If you are struggling to decide on a general sector or on a specific job it is always worth seeking advice.
Although you may feel you want to make the decision yourself, a school career adviser or a personal tutor can look at your current grades and school progression and offer you advice about how your stronger subjects can be transferred into a particular sector – check out our student subject guides , it will provide you with a great basis and what each subject covers. It is also worth talking to your family and your friends; after all, they know you the best!
Most of all, think about what you enjoy learning and what interests you the most, you might end up doing this as a career, so you want to choose something that you are both good at and enjoy! You should also consider what you plan on doing once completing your subject if you know you want to go to university; it is worth checking what subjects your university choice might require you to have in order to get accepted onto the course. Once you have decided what sector bests suit you, you can then look for a specific BTEC.
How is a BTEC assessed and graded?
When studying for a BTEC, the course is divided into several sections. There are core units that everyone on the same BTEC will study, these core units will provide you with the basic and essential knowledge on your chosen subject.
You will then be asked to decide on several optional units. Think carefully when choosing these units, as well as being the things that interest you the most, or that you are the best at. They will also shape your study into a more focused area and will lead to the type of job, apprenticeship or further study that you will be able to apply for on completion.
Throughout the course, you will be assessed on a number of assignments. These assignments will be specific to your course of study and may be practical or written, some may be completed individually and others as part of a team. You may also have to complete some work experience as part of the qualification, although this isn’t always the case. You can check how your specific BTEC will be assessed by checking the specification page when applying.
On completion of your BTEC, you will receive a Pass (P), Merit (M), Distinction (D) or Distinction* (D*) grade. On this grading scale, Distinction* is the highest award and Pass is the lowest.
The Distinction* was only added in 2010 to award those with outstanding work, so don’t worry if your parents or older friends haven’t heard of the D* grading! If your work did not meet the criteria for a pass, you will receive an unclassified grade (U). These grades can still affect your UCAS Tariff Points as well.
How do I calculate my BTEC results?
You can use an online BTEC grade calculator to work out your potential BTEC grades for your current BTEC Level 1/2 or BTEC Level 3. Each module will be awarded credits, and you will receive a number of points for each module. Depending on whether you achieve a pass, merit, distinction or distinction* you will receive a different number of UCAS points BTEC.
The awarded points are then added up to give a BTEC score. Compare these points to a marking grid, and you can work out your overall score. This is also used when calculating your BTEC UCAS points.
What is a BTEC Subsidiary Diploma?
A BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (BTEC SD) is a slightly lesser version of a normal BTEC. The BTEC Subsidiary Diploma counts for one A Level, whereas a normal BTEC counts for two and a BTEC Extended Diploma counts for three A Levels.
What can I do once I have achieved my BTEC?
On receiving your BTEC qualification and depending on what level, you have several options open to you as to what to do next. If you have just completed a BTEC First, it is a good idea to continue on to study for a BTEC Level 3 (BTEC Nationals), or to enrol in further study, either of these two steps will lead to an apprenticeship.
If you have completed your BTEC Level 3 (otherwise known as the BTEC Level 3 extended diploma) or Apprenticeships, you can choose to go straight into employment, you will have a good basis for applying for specific jobs, and you will have gained skills and experience that could benefit you in job applications, that will look great on your CV – gain help and advice with writing a student CV .
You can progress to a higher level of BTEC or BTEC courses, or you can apply to further education such as a university. Also, you have the opportunity to take on an apprenticeship. An apprenticeship will allow you to gain new qualifications while working on the job and can lead to a career.
What if I want to go to university?
Although BTECs are considered a vocational qualification, an increasing number of universities list BTECs as one of the accepted entry requirements. In fact, some reports show that approximately 10% of university students have a BTEC, as this qualification is becoming increasingly considered on par with A-Levels, whether that be students looking at BTEC Health and Social Care, BTEC Engineering or even BTEC Business.
For example, having a BTEC Applied Science Level 3 can get you into biomedical, clinical science, physics, or pharmaceutical science degrees. Whether your BTEC is accepted or not varies from institution to institution, so you will want to check with the university of your choice first.
Alternatively, you may want to continue on the BTEC route. BTEC Higher Nationals are a Level 4 / Level 5 qualification, which is equivalent to completing the first and second year of an undergraduate degree.
How do I apply to university with a BTEC?
As long as you have completed a BTEC Level 3 (also known as a BTEC Extended Diploma), you can apply to university through UCAS. You also need to make sure that if you have a Level 3, that these still add up to the points required for the course, so make sure you check your BTEC Level 3 UCAS Points prior to applying.
The application process is divided into several steps, which you are explained in detail here. You will also need to have your BTEC registration number handy, this can find this number on your BTEC certificate.
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AWS Public Sector Blog
Pearson and aws educate launch the first cloud computing btec higher national qualifications.
Across the globe, the demand for professionals with cloud computing skills exceeds available resources. For the past four years, cloud computing has been the #1 skill companies are seeking according to LinkedIn’s annual study .
To address the cloud computing skills gap, global learning company Pearson is collaborating with AWS Educate to develop the Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC) Higher National qualifications at levels 4 and 5 in cloud computing. The BTEC Higher Nationals are internationally recognized higher education qualifications and are delivered at colleges and universities in 50 countries around the world. These are the first BTEC Higher Nationals available in cloud computing. Gary Gates, Pearson’s Senior Vice President for Global Business ( Pearson VUE ) and UK Higher Education, emphasized the immediate need for these skills, saying, “There is a real industry need for qualifications such as these around the world, and we are pleased to be helping to fill a skills gap in a growing field.”
The objective of the collaboration between Pearson and AWS Educate is to ensure that there is the education and training necessary to create a cloud-ready workforce. Ken Eisner, director of worldwide education programs for Amazon Web Services (AWS) and head of AWS Educate said, “AWS Educate has worked to map learning objectives and content to the most in-demand cloud jobs. We’re thrilled that Pearson shares this education-to-workforce vision and are excited to collaborate with them on these new BTEC Higher National qualifications in cloud computing.”
Cloud computing and technology has become even more important as much of the world continues to work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Gates, “The COVID-19 situation has made technology all the more important in our lives, particularly cloud computing, which enables us to continue our digital lives through various applications.”
The career-focused BTEC Higher National qualifications will empower students with the knowledge and skills needed to start a career in cloud computing or to pursue higher degrees. To align the content of the qualifications to employers’ day-to-day needs, Pearson engages with cloud industry experts including employers, university lecturers, and teachers. The Level 4 Higher National Certificate will give students an understanding of the fundamentals of cloud computing as well as training in approaches to problem solving. The Level 5 Higher National Diploma will have three pathways that will enable students to progress into the workplace by specializing in one of the following pathways: Cloud Support, Cyber Security, or Software Development.
The new qualifications will launch worldwide and in the UK later in 2020. They will be taught at new and existing Pearson Approved Centres as part of a wide array of BTEC Higher Nationals already available in over 540 delivery centers across more than 50 countries. The BTEC Higher Nationals are studied by more than 50,000 students each year.
Learn more about the BTEC Higher Nationals and Pearson .
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Vikki Cantrill investigates the pros and cons of applied general qualifications for post-16 students and their future careers
In England, for every five students who study chemistry A-level there are approximately two who are studying for a science- or maths-based applied general qualification at level 3. However, applied general qualifications provide a solid, though sometimes misunderstood, alternative.
Source: vulcano / Shutterstock.com
Students studying beyond the age of 16 can usually take either academic or vocational paths
Applied general qualifications include both short and long courses (from 180 to 1080 total guided-learning hours) in a wide variety of subjects. Practical assignments and reports continually assess student progress, whereas A-levels have an academic focus and are largely exam based with a small practical component. The popular level 3 extended diploma offered by the Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC) comprises 1080 guided-learning hours and is considered equivalent to three A-levels.
What can BTECs offer over A-levels?
‘There is a misconception that A-levels are for intellectual people, while BTEC is for the less “fortunate”. I disagree,’ says Attila Márk Czeglédi, now a 3rd year MChem student at the University of Surrey.
Attila studied for an extended diploma in forensic science. He credits the course for developing his essay-writing and organisational skills, and for providing him with more practical laboratory skills than an A-level could offer.
‘BTEC is learning by doing. It contains a lot of practical work,’ says David Martin, Apprenticeship for Laboratory and Science Technicians course manager at City and Islington College. ‘The academic content of an applied science BTEC unit does not match A-level chemistry in terms of learned facts and application. However, BTEC qualifications encourage the development of research skills, time management and practical laboratory skills.’
‘For students who dislike exams,* who pride themselves in producing high-quality work and who enjoy practical study – these students make good BTEC students,’ he adds.
Applied general courses are also a valuable way to gain specialist training. David teaches a subsidiary diploma in applied science by BTEC that is equivalent to one A-level. He believes this type of course is most effective when delivered alongside the world of work because students can readily use work examples in their assignments.
Attila completed an extended project qualification (roughly equivalent to half an A-level) to gain valuable work experience as a laboratory technician assistant. This also boosted his chances of getting into university.
Does a BTEC harm chances of going to university?
With the exception of courses like medicine and dentistry, there is no reason why an applied general qualification would negatively affect a student’s chances of securing a place at university. ‘Our entry grades are standardised so that a student joining us with a BTEC is of an equivalent academic standard to one joining with A-levels,’ says David Watson, admissions tutor for chemistry at the University of Surrey. In a given year, the university makes around 10 offers to students on applied general courses. Typically one or two such students ultimately enrol onto the three-year BSc chemistry degree programme. ‘[A BTEC] certainly isn’t an “easy” option to get onto a degree course,’ he points out.
Different educational and cultural backgrounds enrich the student cohort
Applied general students benefit from studying a broad range of topics, but they can lack knowledge depth in certain areas relative to students with more academic qualifications. They may require more support early on at university than those who enter with A-levels, but this depends on the university course . Students arriving with A-levels or International Baccalaureate might also need extra support; this is often true for maths among science undergraduates, for example.
To address this situation the University of Surrey runs a ‘Maths for Chemists’ course in the first year to provide the basic maths skills needed for a chemistry degree. David observes, ‘Normally, by the end of the first year it is difficult to tell who joined us with which qualifications’.
Some top universities will not consider applied general qualifications, but many universities do accept them in combination with A-levels or on their own for entry into foundation-year or first-year degree programmes in line with the standard UCAS Tariff points system .
David Watson encourages prospective students from all backgrounds to contact university admissions tutors and talk about entry criteria. ‘We like to be inclusive and welcome as many different people from different backgrounds as possible,’ he says. Different educational and cultural backgrounds enrich the student cohort. The various routes students take to university bring an interesting mix of both academic and applied skills that benefit everyone.
For University of Surrey students who perform well, there is also the option to swap from the standard three-year programme onto a four-year master’s programme, which includes a year’s industrial placement. Attila recently made the switch to the master’s programme and is currently on industrial placement studying radiation chemistry at the Institute for Nuclear Research in Debrecen, Hungary.
How to help students decide which route to pursue
Excellent guidance is crucial to help students recognise their abilities and help them decide whether they are best suited to academic or applied courses. On 2 January 2018 legislation will come into effect that aims to improve awareness of all study options post-14, post-16 and post-18.
The new regulations will permit further education colleges, apprenticeship providers and university technical colleges to talk directly to pupils (at all local-authority-maintained schools and academies) about the choices available to them in addition to the advice already provided by the schools themselves.
Careers guidance generally advises that post-16 students study subjects that can steer them towards the types of careers that interest them (eg choose science subjects if you want to be an analytical chemist). Here students who want to study for an applied general qualification need to be particularly cautious. For example, a college might be able to offer an applied general course that matches a student’s interests. However, on closer inspection, that course may not include a relevant optional module that the student requires in order to apply either for the jobs that interest them or to higher education.
So a student needs to to look into the optional modules offered and consider their possibilities carefully. It may be that a course on offer is suitable but not ideal, or perhaps the student needs to consider different qualifications or even a different school or college to keep their career aspirations on track.
Five minutes with Attila Márk Czeglédi
Attila Márk Czeglédi at work in a lab
Source: Attila Márk Czeglédi
Where are you studying now?
I am an MChem chemistry student at the University of Surrey. I‘m doing my industrial research placement at the Institute for Nuclear Research in Hungary, Debrecen.
What route got you there?
I studied A-level chemistry, physics and biology for one year then transferred onto a level 3 extended diploma in forensic science as my results weren’t good enough for A2. I then did a year and a half of work experience at the technician lab in my department. My extended project qualification was about nuclear physics and nuclear fusion as an energy source. Without these additional experiences, there would have been only a slim chance that my university would have accepted me onto their course.
My academic and work experience is far from specialised. I come from a biology and psychology-dominated level 3 course where I did extra work on nuclear physics. I then enrolled onto a chemistry degree and now I‘m working in a physical research institute.
What do you hope to do next?
After completing my degree I aim to work in the health sector, perhaps as a clinical chemist. I was planning to do a PhD in medicinal chemistry at the beginning of my degree, but I am now moving away from this idea as I start to get a taste of what’s it like to carry out a proper research project.
Any take-home messages?
Academic knowledge has usually been the least of my worries when being interviewed by universities and also for places outside academia. People are more interested in what you can achieve in the real world rather than in exams. A-levels aren’t the only way to success.
* T he new applied generals (from September 2016) do include an external assessment under formal exam conditions . This is likely to impact the way some students cope with the course, and with university study .
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What is a BTEC Diploma?
Introduction to BTEC Diploma
A BTEC Diploma or Business and Technology Education Council Diploma are specialised courses designed for work-related qualifications. These courses combine practical learning approaches with the theory content in accordance to the subject under study. BTECs are vocational qualifications and are practical in nature. The BTEC courses would suit both your learning interest as well as help you devise plans of what to do after your studies.
There are 2,000+ BTEC qualifications available across 16 sectors. All of them are available right from entry level to Level 7 professional qualifications , which is equivalent to the postgraduate level. Some of the BTEC qualifications include –
- Business Studies
- Applied Science
- Art and Design
- Health and Social Care
- Performing Arts
- Computer Science and ICT
- Public Services
- Travel and Tourism
BTECs are developed for the those who are interested in specific sectors or industries, but who aren’t sure yet which job they would be doing in the near future. If you are one among them, you can choose to study a BTEC Diploma course at Level 2 or 3. While some prefer to do it alongside their academic qualifications , there are some who want to carry on studying as a part of a larger programme, for example, an apprenticeship . You can also do the BTEC Diploma as a standalone and independent course.
Different Types of BTEC Diploma
BTEC courses are further classified into three primary levels of study. These are:
- BTEC Firsts – These courses are available from the entry level through Level 2, which is equivalent to GCSEs. These courses provide fundamental knowledge and introduction to work across the vocational sector. If you do the BTECs alongside other qualifications, your doors to higher education will open up. After the BTEC Firsts, you can choose to go for an apprenticeship or into your desired employment options.
- BTEC Nationals – These courses are available from Level 3, which are similar to A-Levels. A majority of these courses are recognised by further education colleges, universities and employers. Getting a BTEC National qualification would help you find good employment opportunities. You can also do a BTEC National course for continuing with higher studies or pursuing professional development programmes.
- BTEC Apprenticeships – These courses are available from Level 2 through Level 5 for more than 25 different sectors.
BTECs are often considered as an alternative option to the A-Levels. There are several BTEC levels, which include –
- Levels 1-2: These are equivalent to GCSE.
- Level 3: These are equivalent to A-Levels
- Levels 4-7: These are Degree equivalent
Apart from the above, a BTEC Subsidiary Diploma is considered similar to one A-Level, and a BTEC Diploma course is regarded as the same as two A-Levels. A BTEC Extended Diploma course , on the other hand, would count as three A-Levels. Hence, you would have the option of studying a mix of courses as per your requirements. For example, you can either study a combination of BTECs or choose to mix BTECs with A-Levels.
Dating back to the 1930s, the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma was a three-year full-time course. But after the Haslegrave Report, the BEC (Business Education Council) and the TEC (Technician Education Council) took the responsibility to accredit this qualification, which was known as the Ordinary National Diploma. Along with this, other qualifications were also getting accreditation, including the National Certificate, Higher National Diploma (HND) and Higher National Certificate (HNC).
BTEC Diploma Course Structure
The BTEC qualifications are quite flexible, and you can pursue one alongside some other career options. You can even do it with or as a substitute for GCSEs or A-Levels in colleges and schools. These are generally full-time courses and are studied either in college or as a joint course between a college and a school.
The BTEC Diploma courses are divided into several units, covering specific areas of understanding, knowledge and skills that are required by the particular industry or sector.
- Every BTEC student has to take the core units that provide a broad understanding and foundation about the concerned sector.
- You can also choose from optional units, which enable the candidates to focus on particular areas of interests. These units also help students to make systematic plans about their further studies, employment or apprenticeship goals.
- The BTEC Diploma course comprises a series of assignments, some of which are written and others are activity-based. The latter might involve creating film clips, creating business plans or planning and implementing certain performance. Depending on the course guidelines, the candidates can either complete their assignments individually or as a part of a team. There are some BTEC courses that allow students to apply their knowledge, skills and understanding through work experience.
Entry Requirements for a BTEC Diploma
The entry requirements of a BTEC Diploma course vary depending on the particular college or school and also on the particular course one is opting for. However, the minimum entry requirement for a BTEC Diploma is five GCSE subject passed with grades from A* to C or 9 to 4, which should cover English, Science and Maths.
Career Opportunities after Completing a BTEC Diploma
Here is a brief career opportunities guide for those who completed either a BTEC Nationals or BTEC Firsts:
- BTEC Nationals – After completing a BTEC National qualification, holders can head on towards employment or even choose to continue with further education in the same or some other related field of study. Candidates can also continue with some other higher education or specialised professional development programmes.
- BTEC Firsts – The candidates completing BTEC Firsts can go on further education at Level 3, such as the BTEC Nationals. One can also choose to go into employment or do an apprenticeship.
Now, the question may arise: do universities really accept BTEC qualifications? The fact is, even though in the past most universities preferred A-Levels, it is not so in the current days. Times are changing, and today, universities are happy to accept candidates with even just one BTEC qualification, as it is similar to three A-Levels. However, you simply need to check for the eligibility criteria of the course you are applying for. Also, do consider to check out the minimum grades, merits, UCAS points or distinction required to apply for a particular course.
So if you are unsure about which line of courses you should follow, you need to set your goals first. Accordingly, you can consider studying the subject of your choice, or even decide upon taking vocational qualifications . You can also pursue work or become a volunteer or start an apprenticeship while studying part-time.
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Meaning of "Business and Technology Education Council" in the English dictionary
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The definition of Business and Technology Education Council in the dictionary is British body responsible for conferring vocational awards until 1996.
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-->Klapwijk Lab --> Mesoscopic superconductivity and quantum matter
Our research-group is fascinated by new states of matter. One such state is the ferromagnetic state, known for thousands of years in, for example, the compass. Another one is the superconducting state, which is known since 1911. The current nanotechnology makes it possible to combine those different ground states.
But .. while, the nano-toolbox evolved, new states of matter continue to be discovered, such as the Quantum Hall effect, different kinds of superconductivity and topological insulators. This rich variety provides a fascinating world to explore and many new phenomena are predicted by combining these ground states.
Our main activity is a project funded by the European Research Council for Advanced Researchers. It is called Mesoscopic THz imaging of Quantum Matter with the acronym, METIQUM . It takes up the challenge of measuring spatial variations in conductivity buried in otherwise insulating materials. The challenge is to develop a method to apply locally an electromagnetic signal which is reflected from the material to be studied and further processed. We have purchased recently developed equipment, which can do this at a frequency of about 10 GHz, and we are working to extend this frequency into the THz range (for which we have experience from our former collaboration with the astronomers).
The PI has, as a Megagrant winner from the Russian Ministry of Science and Education a second appointment at the Physics Department of the Moscow State Pedagogical University in close association with the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. The goal is to contribute to a re-establishment of the scientific level and to provide guidance in the development towards the creation of research-universities. One motivation is also the respect for the rich and deep contributions to the theory of superconductivity provided by Russian theorists since the 40-ies of the last century.
Finally, the PI became in 2014 a recipient of an Alexander von Humboldt Forschungs Preis, proposed by Laurens Molenkamp from the University of Würzburg. This prize, given in recognition of his past research-accomplishments, enables also a participation in the research-program of Molenkamp’s research-group, with the unique facilities to work with HgTe and HgCdTe heterostructures, one of workhorses of the recently discovered topological insulators.
Business and Technology Education Council
The Business and Technology Education Council ( BTEC ) is a provider of secondary school leaving qualifications and further education qualifications in England , Wales and Northern Ireland . While the T in BTEC stood for Technical, according to the DfE (2016) it now stands for Technology.  BTECs originated in 1984 and were awarded by Edexcel from 1996.  Their origins lie in the Business Education Council, formed in 1974 to "rationalise and improve the relevance of sub-degree vocational education".  They are the responsibility of the Minister of State for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education in the Department for Education .
Awards and course system, university level awards (level 6+), school leaving qualification (level 3), school leaving qualification (level 2).
BTEC qualifications, especially Level 3, are accepted by all UK universities (in many instances combined with other qualifications such as A Levels) when assessing the suitability of applicants for admission, and many such universities base their conditional admissions offers on a student's predicted BTEC grades.
A report by the Social Market Foundation in January 2018 found that more than a quarter (26%) of university applicants in England entered HE with at least one BTEC qualification.  The research found that BTECs provide a particularly significant route to higher education for specific groups, with almost half students entering university with a BTEC, alongside large numbers of students in specific regions, including the North West , Yorkshire and the Humber , North East and West Midlands .  This followed a separate report published by HEPI in 2017 on BTECs and higher education. 
Examples of qualifications include:
- Animal Management
- Applied Law
- Applied Science
- Applied Psychology
- Art & Design
- Children's Care and Learning
- Creative Digital Media Production
- Early Years & Education
- Hair & Beauty
- Health & Social Care
- Music / Music Technology
- Performing Arts
- Public Services
- Sports Science
- Travel & Tourism
The BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma dates back to the 1930s as a full-time three-year course. After the Haselgrave Report, the Business Education Council (BEC) and Technician Education Council (TEC) took over the accrediting of this qualification (called the "Ordinary National Diploma") and others in the stable, such as the National Certificate, Higher National Certificate and Higher National Diploma . The portfolio of courses was integrated when the BEC and TEC merged to form BTEC. 
The BTEC (Business and Technology Education Council) was formed by the merger of the Business Education Council (BEC) and the Technical Education Council (TEC). The University of London Examinations & Assessment Council (ULEAC) and BTEC merged to form Edexcel .  
The following Level 6,7 or 8 courses are known as BTEC Strategic Awards . The qualification names for Level 6+ courses changed dependent on whether they were awarded through the forthcoming National Qualification Framework (NQF) or the predecessor Qualification Credit Framework (QCF) and represent University level awards:
The following Level 3 courses, known as BTEC National Diplomas , are intended for those with five or more GCSE grades A*-C including English, mathematics and science. The qualification names for Level 3 courses changed dependent on whether they were awarded through the forthcoming National Qualification Framework (NQF) or the predecessor Qualification Credit Framework (QCF):
The following Level 2 courses, known as BTEC Firsts, are intended for students at GCSE level as a vocational equivalent. There are no BTEC courses for English, or mathematics. Students who do not achieve the minimum Level 2 Pass grade will receive a Level 1 Pass in the given qualification equivalent to GCSE grades D-E and therefore does not count to the A*-C measurement system. The qualification names for Level 2 courses changed dependent on whether they were awarded though the current National Qualification Framework (NQF) or the predecessor Qualification Credit Framework (QCF):
- Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education
- Council for National Academic Awards
- National Vocational Qualification
- Cambridge Technicals
Related Research Articles
The General Certificate of Secondary Education ( GCSE ) is an academic qualification in a range of particular subjects, taken in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. State schools in Scotland use the Scottish Qualifications Certificate instead. However, private schools in Scotland often choose to follow the GCSE system in England.
National Vocational Qualifications ( NVQs ) are practical work-based awards in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland that are achieved through assessment and training. The regulatory framework supporting NVQs was withdrawn in 2015 and replaced by the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF), although the term "NVQ" may be used in RQF qualifications if they "are based on recognised occupational standards, work-based and/or simulated work-based assessment, and where they confer occupational competence".
Edexcel is a British multinational education and examination body formed in 1996 and wholly owned by Pearson plc since 2005. It is the only privately owned examination board in the United Kingdom. Its name is a portmanteau term combining the words ed ucation and excel lence .
The National Certificate is a higher education qualification in a technology discipline offered by higher institutions across the globe. Each country has its own specifications about the certificate.
Higher National Diploma ( HND ), part of the Higher Nationals suite of qualifications, is an academic higher education qualification in the United Kingdom and various other countries. They were introduced in England and Wales in 1920 alongside the Ordinary National Diploma and the Higher National Certificate. A qualification of the same title is also offered in Argentina, Brunei, India, Malta, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and some other countries.
A Higher National Certificate ( HNC ), part of the Higher Nationals suite of qualifications, is a higher education/further education qualification in the United Kingdom.
The International General Certificate of Secondary Education ( IGCSE ) is an English language based secondary qualification similar to the GCSE and is recognised in the United Kingdom as being equivalent to the GCSE for the purposes of recognising prior attainment. It was developed by Cambridge Assessment International Education. The examination boards Edexcel, Learning Resource Network (LRN), and Oxford AQA also offer their own versions of International GCSEs. Students normally begin studying the syllabus at the beginning of Year 10 and take the test at the end of Year 11. However, in some international schools, students can begin studying the syllabus at the beginning of Year 9 and take the test at the end of Year 10.
The UCAS Tariff is used to allocate points to post-16 qualifications. Universities and colleges may use it when making offers to applicants. A points total is achieved by converting qualifications, such as A-Levels, into points, making it simpler for course providers to compare applicants. It is used as a means of giving students from the United Kingdom places at UK universities.
The BTEC Level 3 diploma is a Further Education qualification and vocational qualification taken in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The qualification is organised and awarded by Pearson within the BTEC brand and it is equivalent to A-Levels. It is equivalent to the GCE A Levels, more specifically to three A2 awards and the AVCE.
The A-level is a subject-based qualification conferred as part of the General Certificate of Education, as well as a school leaving qualification offered by the educational bodies in the United Kingdom and the educational authorities of British Crown dependencies to students completing secondary or pre-university education. They were introduced in England and Wales in 1951 to replace the Higher School Certificate. The A-level permits students to have potential access to a chosen university they applied to with UCAS points. They could be accepted into it should they meet the requirements of the university.
The Qualifications and Credit Framework ( QCF ) was the national credit transfer system for education qualification in England, Northern Ireland and Wales until October 2015.. The replacement was the Regulated Qualification Framework.
In the UK education sector, there are a wide range of qualification types offered by the United Kingdom awarding bodies. Qualifications range in size and type, can be academic, vocational or skills-related, and are grouped together into different levels of difficulty. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, qualifications are divided into Higher Education qualifications, which are on the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) and are awarded by bodies with degree awarding powers, and Regulated qualifications, which are on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) and are accredited by Ofqual in England, the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment in Northern Ireland and Qualifications Wales in Wales. In Scotland, qualifications are divided into Higher Education qualifications, Scottish Qualifications Authority qualifications and Scottish Vocational Qualifications/Modern Apprenticeships, which are on the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF). Scottish Higher Education Qualifications are on both the SCQF and the FHEQ.
The BTEC First Diploma is a vocational qualification taken in England and Wales and Northern Ireland by young people aged 14 and over and by adults. The qualification is organised and awarded by the Edexcel Foundation within the BTEC brand.
Post-Leaving Certificate ( PLC ) courses are a set of courses and qualifications run in Ireland for students who have finished their secondary education. The term refers to post-secondary education courses which are not found within the higher education sector, but the further education sector in Ireland. The majority of students who enrol on a PLC course are under 23, but mature students are also welcome, and increasingly enrolling on such courses. A Post-Leaving Certificate course is taken after a student has passed their Leaving Certificate, and is generally between one and two years in duration. PLC courses are aimed primarily at students who would like to develop vocational or technological skills in order to enter an occupation, or progress to higher education.
The BTEC Foundation Diploma in Art and Design is a vocational qualification taken in England and Wales and Northern Ireland by young people aged 18 and over and by adults. The qualification is organised and awarded by the Edexcel Foundation within the BTEC brand.
Alternative pathways in education are alternative means of obtaining educational qualifications, other than the traditional means of gaining access to or completing the required study to obtain the educational qualifications.
Post-secondary qualifications are qualifications typically studied for after successful completion of secondary school. In Mauritius, this is usually after successful completion of the Higher School Certificate or its equivalent, although select qualifications may permit early school leaving or require additional study. A variety of different post-secondary qualifications are offered in Mauritius.
Compass College (Modern Continuing Education Centre) is a tertiary institution providing career oriented hospitality and tourism management and business management programmes in Hong Kong. Compass College is an education organisation affiliated with the Modern Education. It provides one-year diploma programme and two-years higher diploma programme for secondary school graduates.
The national qualification frameworks in the United Kingdom are qualifications frameworks that define and link the levels and credit values of different qualifications.
Post-secondary qualifications are qualifications typically studied for after successful completion of secondary school. In Sri Lanka, this is usually after successful completion of the General Certificate of Education. A variety of different post-secondary qualifications are offered in Sri Lanka.
- 1 2 Kelly, Scott. "HEPI report: Reforming BTECs: Applied General qualifications as a route to higher education" (PDF) . p. 8.
- ↑ "Our history | Pearson qualifications" . qualifications.pearson.com . Retrieved 2018-01-30 .
- 1 2 "Vocation, Vocation, Vocation" . Social Market Foundation . Retrieved 2018-01-30 .
- 1 2 "Our history" . Edexcel . Pearson Education . Retrieved 14 June 2014 .
- ↑ "Our history" . Edexcel . Pearson Education . Retrieved 14 June 2014 .