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BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Public Services (Uniformed) at Newcastle-under-Lyme College

Course description

If you’re interested in joining one of the uniformed public services, such as the Police Force, Ambulance Service, Fire and Rescue Service, British Army, Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, Prison Service or Maritime and Coastguard Agency a Public Services course at Newcastle-under-Lyme College will prepare you for the mental and physical demands of life in the services.

You’ll be taught by professionals with years of service in the uniformed public services so you’ll benefit from outstanding expertise and vast knowledge. You’ll also have the chance to take part in outdoor activities such as climbing, kayaking or expedition skills as part of your studies.
The course lasts for two years. You will gain knowledge and understanding of a wide range of public services and study modules such as Government Policies, Leadership and Teamwork and Crime. Due to the nature of the activities on such units such as Outdoor & Adventurous Expeditions, each student is required to wear a course uniform. Some personal funding will be required and in 2015 this was approximately £50. Financial assistance may be available depending on your personal circumstances – please visit
Year1 units include Fitness Testing, Physical Preparation, Government Policies, Responding to Emergency Incidents, Understanding Behaviour, Leadership and Teamwork, Citizenship and Teamwork, Police Powers and Land-based outdoor activities.
Year2 units include Planning for Major Incidents, Custodial Care, Water-based outdoor activities, Outdoor and Expedition Skills, Media, Crime, Practical Team Sports and Volunteering.

The course uses a blended learning approach, mixing classroom theory with a hands on experience. From time to time you will work on individual projects, as well as getting together with your other class mates to produce pieces of group work. To ensure that the course caters for all abilities and learning styles we make sure that our lessons cater for students who like to learn by doing, or listening and reflecting on what they have been shown. You will develop practical skills such as map work and navigation whilst at the same time developing the confidence to lead groups, be that in the classroom or on the hills of the Peak District.

Maths and English
Alongside your course you will study maths and/or English to improve your skills in these vital subjects by attending structured weekly sessions as part of your timetable. Maths and English development is also integrated in practical assignments.

Course content

Year one units include Crime, Physical Preparation, Exercise, Health and Life Style, Award in Assisting Basic Expedition Leadership, Government Policies, Responding, War and Conflict, Study Skills, Careers and Leadership and Teamwork. Year two units include Responding, Custodial Care, Communications and Technology, Environmental Policy, Exercise Health and Life Style and Command and Control, Outdoor and Expedition Skills, Planning for Incidents and Fitness Testing and Training.

Entry requirements

Usually you’ll need four or more high grades at GCSE in subjects that are relevant to the course you’d like to study (including maths and/or English). Alternatively, you’ll need a Level 2 Diploma with overall Merit in a relevant subject and maths and English at appropriate levels. You are also asked to attend a College interview to establish that the course is suitable for you. It’s worth remembering that the course includes fitness testing, physical activity and outdoor activities.


The course is accredited by BTEC. There is no final written examination as you achieve your qualification through continuous assessment throughout the two years. The assessments will come in many forms, including written assignment work, project work, presentations, group work, and practical-based assessments. It is demanding and you will need to be organised and be able to work independently from time to time. Throughout the course you will collect evidence of your competence in each unit. The work completed in each unit is graded as Pass, Merit or Distinction.

Financial information

Newcastle Maintenance Allowance (NMA): Anyone with a household income under £21,000 can receive £20 per week financial support to help pay for travel and meals and meet the costs of essential trips, books, stationery and equipment. The payments will be subject to full attendance on your course. A range of other financial support is available, depending on your personal circumstances. Some personal funding will be required and in 2012 this was approximately £50. Financial assistance may be available depending on your personal circumstances.

Future opportunities

On completion of this uniformed public service course many students continue study in some aspect of public services (e.g. Criminology, Law, Forensics, Policing) on a Higher Education course (e.g. at university or on our own Foundation Degree Course in Public Services). Other students go straight into employment in one of the uniformed public services (e.g. Police, Fire and Rescue, Probation Service). Past students, for example have been successful in their applications to the RAF, Fire and Rescue Service, Police Service, Army and Navy.

Further information

On completion of the course you will be properly equipped with the skills, knowledge and attitudes that will help you make the right choices for your future careers. Our staff have worked in the Public Services (e.g. Police, Fire and Rescue Service, Army, Navy and Royal Air Force), bringing many years of knowledge and experience to the classroom. You see the Uniformed Public Services first hand including visits to see Royal Navy warships, Army bases, police and fire stations, where you can, at first hand, meet and question public service personnel about their jobs and career choices. We invite professional careers advisors from the public services to give presentations and talks where they describe the job opportunities open to you in the Uniformed Public Services. Whether it is going on to university or seeking employment, by the end of the course, you are able to make informed choices about your next career step.

For more information contact Sam Holmes, Curriculum Leader in Public Services by emailing or calling 01782254256


How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Newcastle-under-Lyme College directly.

Last updated date: 21 November 2016
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