The course involves a combination of internally and externally assessed components. The first year includes written assignments, these are based around a variety of scientific practical techniques. There are three formal exams one in chemistry, one in biology and one in physics. The second year will include an externally assessed exam (completed in lesson time) based on a variety of practical skills and techniques. There will also be another unit of written assignments based on a variety of aspects of human physiology. The units are listed below:
Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science I
Unit 2: Practical Scientific Procedures and Techniques
Unit 3: Science Investigation Skills.
Unit 8: Physiology of Human Body Systems
Level and Size of qualification: Extended Certificate – 1 A Level equivalent (5 hours a week for 2 years)
This course offers students the opportunity to develop lab practical skills which are valuable in the work place. If you wish to study or work in the science industry then this course offers the appropriate experience and skills. Assignments will involve both independent and collaborative work. Students will need to be good at working to deadlines and be well organised to keep work up to date. As this is a vocational course pupils would be provided with opportunities to attend external visits and potentially work experience.
Two units are internally assessed assignments. Each unit will have a number of assignments to be completed. For each unit a Pass, Merit or Distinction grade can be achieved. There is a formal exam component to this course which will be taken at the end of the first year. In the second year an externally assessed exam will be completed based on scientific investigation skills.
You will need a grade 5 in Science or a Merit grade at BTEC science level 2. You will also require at least a grade 5 in Maths and English. You will need to show a good level of interest and enthusiasm. Students will need to have a keen interest in general science and industry applications of the three main disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. You must have good time management, organisation and an ability to work independently in order to succeed on this course.
You will gain an array of lab practical skills which are directly transferable into the work place. BTEC level 3 courses offer the equivalent UCAS points as A-Level subjects. This qualification can therefore offer higher education opportunities in a variety of professions such as nursing, veterinary nursing, pharmacy, zoo biology and radiography as well as the food and drink industry or environmental health. Skills would also be gained that could lead to employment in a hospital laboratory, research laboratory or college.