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IT BTEC Level 3 Certificate at Aquinas College

Course description

Information Technology (IT) involves the use of computers in industry, commerce, the arts and elsewhere. IT includes aspects of IT systems architecture, human factors, project management and the general ability to use computers. Increasingly businesses are implementing IT strategies to manage and process data both to support many business processes and to deliver new opportunities.

The BTEC IT course offers a specialist qualification that focuses on particular aspects of employment within IT vocational sector. The qualification covers both theories in relation to IT and its place in society and practical elements for IT in industry. Assessment is through a combination of external examination, controlled assessment and coursework.

The BTEC Level 3 IT Certificate is equivalent to one GCE AS Level and will be studied in one timetable block. You will study 2 units, one of which is a controlled assessment (10 hours marked externally) using Microsoft Access software application to fulfil a client based brief and the other is coursework based (marked internally).

The BTEC Level 3 IT Extended Certificate is equivalent to one GCE A Level and will be studied in one timetabled block over two years (or will form the second year after studying the BTEC Level 3 IT Certificate). You study 4 units (2 units as detailed above). You will cover an additional two units one of which is an external examination (2 hours, marked externally) and the other coursework (marked internally).

The BTEC is graded as Pass, Merit, Distinction or Distinction * – equivalent to grades E, C, A and A* at A’ Level.

BTEC awards are recognised by the university as part of your UCAS application and are widely respected qualifications for Apprenticeships and Industry.

Course content

Unit 2 – Creating Systems to Manage Information
You will learn how to design, develop and test a relational database system to manage information for an organisation (Microsoft Access). This will be assessed through an external marked 10 hours controlled assessment task.

Unit 3 – Using Social Media in Business
As social media is fast becoming an industry must to promote and increase sales revenue you will investigate the ways businesses can use social media to promote products and services and some of the risks and pitfalls involved. You will plan, implement and evaluate a social media strategy. This is an assessed piece of coursework.

Extended Certificate

All of the units for the Certificate plus:-

Unit 1 – Information Technology Systems

In this unit, you will explore the relationships between the hardware and software that form an IT system, and the way that systems work individually and together, as well as the relationship between the user and the system. You will examine issues related to the use of IT systems and the impact that they have on organisations and individuals. This will be an assessed external examination (2 hours).

Unit 5 – Data Modelling

In this unit, you will investigate the fundamentals of the decision-making process. You will find out how using data modelling provides the computational ability to compare consequences, and determine a preferred course of action. This is an assessed piece of coursework.

Entry requirements

Grade 4 in both GCSE English Language and Maths + 4 grade Cs in other subjects (which could include English Literature grade 4) 

Future opportunities

IT is a high growth area of the service sector, estimated in the Technology Insights 2012 report to contribute to 8 percent (£75 billion) of the UK economy GVA (gross value added) and predicted to generate an additional £47 billion over the next 7 years. There is generally recognised skills gap in the IT sector.

Completing your BTEC Level 3 Certificate and/or Extended Certificate in IT alongside your other chosen level 3 courses can open up opportunities to study an IT related degree at various universities. The degrees on offer range from creative IT such as the BSc (Hons) Computer Games Technology degree to more technical related degrees such as BSc (Hons) Computer and Network Security. It can also contribute towards the points/grades required to attend university to study other unrelated degrees of your choice.

Apprenticeship providers recognise the BTEC IT qualification and are able to offer placements in the IT profession both for Technical and Design based IT-related professions.

Further information

• San Francisco (February) – Visiting:
Intel HQ and Museum, Computer History Museum, Nasa Ames Research Centre, Tech Museum, Stanford University, Alcatraz Tour, Fisherman’s Wharf & Golden Gate Bridge
• London (June) – Visiting:
Maker Worldwide (Apps Developers)
• UKFast Leading Internet and Cloud Management Services (October)
• Manchester Jobs Fair (September) – Visiting Leading Industry Sectors

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Aquinas College directly.

Last updated date: 22 September 2017
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