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What are BTECs?

A BTEC, is a practical-based qualification. The name BTEC comes from the ‘Business and Technology Education Council’. BTECs provide the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a subject and are a viable alternative to the more theory-focused, examination heavy ways of learning. BTEC encourages a more practical way of learning with subject and theory content with learners growing in their talents while also encouraging them to be more creative. BTECs are becoming a popular path to both university and some jobs in place of, or in addition to, A-levels.

Learners will study core units which provide a broad foundation and understanding about the sector and then a range of optional units to choose from which enable students to focus on particular interests and plans they have for next steps into further study or employment. The assignments are designed to allow production of work that responds to real life and workplace scenarios.

Learners submit assignments which can be written or activity based vlogs, podcasts, report writing, presentations and group projects. This builds on the student’s strengths and they develop a portfolio of work to showcase at interviews.

There are no examinations as the course encourages a practical approach to study. In addition to knowledge, BTEC focuses on developing the skills of research, communication, collaboration, public speaking, and working independently valued by universities. Learners build on transferable skills, picking up a broad specialist knowledge by visiting industry experts and businesses on residential and non-residential trips.


→ Approximately 25% of students accepted to university courses in the UK held at least one BTEC, according to UCAS.

→ The BTEC National Diploma is widely used to enter university courses in the UK. In 2016, 1 in 4 UK students used BTEC for university entry.

→ BTEC is accepted at some universities in the following countries: USA, Canada, Netherlands, Hong Kong, Thailand, New Zealand.

Why Choose BTEC?

BTEC empowers young people and inspires through an amazing hands-on experience. The programme nurtures their potential and gives confidence to pursue their dream career. There are no external examinations. BTECs are coursework and assignment based. They allow progression to university options that might have otherwise been unachievable. Flexibility: it is possible to do a combination of A Level and BTEC courses.

BTECs Offered at HeadStart

Level 3 Diploma (equivalent to 2 A Levels) in Business
Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (equivalent to 1 A Level) in Business/ Music/ Performing Arts/ ICT/ Travel and Tourism/ Sport
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