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Engineering BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma at South Downs College

Course description

This two year full time course is designed for students who would like a Level 3 qualification in Engineering. 

The aim of the course is to prepare students for employment in the Engineering Industry or Higher Education at University.

The BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma provides practical and theoretical skills in electrical and mechanical units. 

Additionally we arrange visits to local Engineering Companies to see engineering in action and also to provide the opportunity for students to experience the working environment through work experience placements. 

We also take students for dedicated taster sessions to Portsmouth University and a unique behind the scenes educational session at Thorpe Park. I

Course content

Seventeen units will be studied over two years, comprising of compulsory core units and specialist units. One unit (the Project) is a double award unit.

Year 1 units of study:

  • Health and Safety in the Engineering Workplace
  • Mathematics for Technicians
  • Electrical and Electronic Principles
  • Fabrication Technology
  • Engineering Design
  • Secondary and Finishing Processes
  • Computer Aided Drafting
  • Electronic Circuit Manufacture
  • Electronic Devices and Circuits

Year 2 units of study:

  • Mechanical Principles
  • Engineering Projects
  • Communications for Technicians
  • CNC Machining
  • Further Mathematics
  • Microprocessor Systems
  • Computer Aided Manufacture
  • Electronic Measurement and Testing

Please note: the above units are liable to change.

Entry requirements

You must have a minimum of five GCSEs grade A-C, to include Mathematics, English Language and Science.

You should ideally have a grade B in Mathematics. Suitable additional qualifications may include: GCSEs in Engineering, Electronics and Design Technology in Engineering or ICT.

To support the five GCSEs, vocational qualifications such as BTEC Level 2 in Engineering at Merit grade are appropriate.


The assessment procedure for each unit involves completing a programme of assignments or phase tests to satisfy pass, merit and distinction criteria. This will include an assessment of practical skills and the ability to work safely in the workshop environment.

All assessment procedures are subject to scrutiny by an external moderator appointed by EdExcel. The final BTEC award for each student will be an accumulation of marks earned from each of the engineering units.

To enable students to achieve their potential, it is advisable to allow at least 10 hours per week to review course notes and complete homework and coursework.

Future opportunities

The Level 3 Extended Diploma is also ideal for those wishing to seek employment in the field of Engineering, with the opportunity of returning to College as a Higher Education student to complete an HNC/HND, or as part of the modern Advanced Apprenticeship Scheme.

This course is awarded UCAS points for University entry, comparing on the UCAS tariff scale with 3 A levels. Students are able to apply for a Degree in mechanical or electronics engineering, or other Degrees such as civil engineering, product design, motor sport engineering or marine engineering.  Other Higher Education courses to be considered are the HNC, HND and Foundation Degree.

In Year 2 you will be required to design and build an engineering project which will be presented on our Project Day to lecturing staff and invited guests from local Industry and Universities.  Many students have secured the offer of employment at this event as it is an excellent opportunity to showcase their engineering abilities.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 09 May 2016

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