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Applied Science BTEC Level 3 at St Brendan's Sixth Form College

Course description

Applied Science is a qualification which is designed to provide learners with a more practical, real-world approach to learning together with specialist knowledge, understanding and skills that they need to prepare them for employment or higher education.

The course is tutored by well-qualified Science specialists. The delivery of the course is through a mixture of theory lessons, practical work, independent study, group work and assignment research.  This course is suited to students who are well organized and can take responsibility for their own learning and meet deadlines.

Course content

Year 1

Unit 1: Key Concepts in Science

  • Biology: cells, heart, homeostasis respiration, photosynthesis
  • Chemistry: atomic structure, periodic table, moles, enthalpy 
  • Physics: energy, electricity, dynamics

Unit 2: Applied Experimental Techniques

  • Biology: rates of respiration and photosynthesis 
  • Chemistry: volumetric analysis and colorimetry
  • Physics: resistivity and specific heat capacity 
  • Safety procedure and risk assessment 

Unit 3: Science in the Modern World 

  • Topical scientific issues from a variety of media sources 
  • Public perception of science and the influence of the media 
  • Ethical, moral, commercial, environmental, political and social issues involved in scientific advances and the media 
  • Roles and responsibilities in the science industry 

Year 2

Unit 4: The Human Body 

  • The digestive system and diet
  • Musculoskeletal system and movement 
  • Oxygen transport physiological measurements 
  • structure and function of the nervous system 

Unit 5: Investigating Science

  • Prepare for a scientific investigation 
  • Carry out the investigation and record results 
  • Analyse, conclude and evaluate the investigation 
  • Present the findings to a suitable audience 

Unit 6: Microbiology 

  • Main groups of microorganisms in terms of their structure 
  • Use aseptic techniques to safely cultivate microorganisms 
  • Practical techniques to investigate the growth of microbes 
  • Use of microorganisms in biotechnological industries 

Entry requirements

  • A minimum of 5 GCSE’s at Grades A*-C or at point 4-9 (including English Language). Level 2 vocational qualifications (e.g. BTEC/OCR) must be a merit grade or above and will count as 1 GCSE equivalent.
  • GCSE Biology at grade C/ point 4 or above plus C/ point 4 or above in either GCSE Chemistry of Physics OR CC for Double Award from Core and Additional Science.
  • GCSE Core and Additional Science at grade CC (double award), or CC from triple award (including a grade C in GCSE Biology). The GSCE or BTEC Level 2 Applied Science qualifications are not an acceptable entry qualification for this course.


Units 1, 3 and 4 are assessed by written exam whilst units 2, 5 and 6 are based on a coursework portfolio.

Financial information

Enrichment trips will incur nominal costs to cover transport.

Future opportunities

An Extended Certificate in Applied Science provides an opportunity for students to gain a nationally recognised qualification which will enable them to enter employment in a science related area, or progress to Higher Education.

Further information

Visits have included trips to Filton for a tour of the NHS BT Blood Centre and the chance to see the work of specialist laboratory technicians. There are also a wide variety of talks from visiting speakers.

The Science curriculum area has well-equipped laboratories serviced by a team of science technicians.  All laboratories have computers linked to the College network and the internet. Students are able to use the College Learning Resource Centre (LRC) together with the extensive computer suites.  The LRC is well stocked with books, journals and has Internet facilities.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Brendan's Sixth Form College directly.

Last updated date: 24 October 2016

Key information

  • Start date: Next September