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Applied General Science Level 3 Certificate and Extended Certificate AQA at The Canterbury Academy

Course description

Level 3 Applied General Certificates in science are a vocational complement to A-levels or Tech-levels and ideal for learners looking to broaden their knowledge of a particular sector. Developed with the support of higher education, they also meet new performance measurements for achievement and attract UCAS tariff points.


These level 3 qualifications offer a practical introduction to science and support progression to further study or employment. Developed in collaboration with schools, colleges and higher education, they help learners develop the fundamental scientific knowledge and practical skills valued by universities and employers.


Learners will: practise experimental scientific techniques and explore how they’re applied in industry; develop their knowledge and understanding of concepts in biology, chemistry and physics; plan and carry out a scientific investigation of their own choosing; explore ways inwhich topical scientific issues are presented in the media; and investigate the role of scientists and the different career pathways open to them.

Course content

The certificate in applied science course consists of three core units:

· Key concepts in science

· Applied experimental technique

· Science in the modern world


The extended certificate consists of three further units:

· The human body

· Investigating science

· and a third optional unit, organic chemistry

Entry requirements

Minimum grade 5 at GCSE in science.


Studied in first year


Unit 1: Key concepts in science

Written examination (one hour 30 minutes)

Learners will develop an understanding of key concepts relating to biology, chemistry and physics through a range of practical work to reinforce knowledge and develop learners’ skills.


Unit 2: Applied experimental techniques

Internally assessed through portfolio work

Learners are introduced to new experimental techniques, reinforcing methods met previously and developing practical skills including accuracy and precision. Learners will research the background to a number of analytical and experimental techniques in an applied or vocational context.


Unit 3: Science in the modern world

Written exam (pre-release sources) (one hour 30 minutes)

Learners will analyse and evaluate scientific information to develop critical thinking skills and understand the use of the media to communicate scientific ideas and theories. Learners will also find out about scientific careers through the different roles scientists undertake in scientific organisations.





Studied in second year


Unit 4: The human body

Written examination (one hour 30 minutes)

Learners will develop knowledge and understanding of the structure and function of the digestive system, the components of a balanced and imbalanced diet and the effects on health. Assessment focuses on occupations that require knowledge of the human body, such as sports scientists and dieticians.


Unit 5: Investigating science

Internally assessed through portfolio work

Learners gain the opportunity to undertake the role of a research scientist, following standard procedures to complete a scientific investigation. The unit enables learners to demonstrate and extend their scientific knowledge and skills. Learners may choose one investigation from a list of titles or choose their own investigation in consultation with their tutor.


Organic chemistry

Internally assessed through portfolio work

Learners are introduced to preparative organic chemistry in a wide range of contexts, including pharmaceuticals, dyes and bio-diesel. Learners will synthesise organic compounds and will develop practical chemistry skills and techniques.

Future opportunities

This course will help candidates to prepare for higher education courses and is supported by the following higher education institutes:


Aberystwyth University • Birmingham City University • University of Bolton • Edge Hill University • Staffordshire University • University of South Wales • Southampton University • University of Sunderland • University of Wolverhampton • York St John University


And the following professional bodies:

• WiSET (Women in Science, Engineering and Technology) • University of York Science Education Group • The Association for Science Education

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 07 November 2018
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 Years

Contact details