Extended Diploma in Business
On successful completion of a BTEC level 3 qualification, a learner can progress to or within employment and/or continue their study in the same, or related vocational area.
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Within this, Pearson will also identify the number of Guided Learning Hours (GLH) that we expect a centre delivering the qualifi cation will need to provide. Guided learning means activities that directly or immediately involve tutors and assessors in teaching, supervising, and invigilating learners, such as lessons, tutorials, online instruction, supervised study giving feedback on performance. In addition to guided learning, other required learning directed by tutors or assessors will include private study, preparation for assessment and undertaking assessment when not under supervision, such as preparatory reading, revision and independent research.
The 180-credit BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma extends and deepens the specialist work-related focus from the BTEC Level 3 90-credit Diploma and the BTEC Level 3 Diploma. There is potential for the qualification to prepare learners for appropriate direct employment in the vocational sector and it is suitable for those who have decided that they clearly wish to enter a particular specialist area of work. It is broadly equivalent to three GCE A Levels.
Some learners may wish to gain the qualification in order to enter a specialist area of employment or to progress to a higher education foundation degree, HND or other professional development programme.
The BTEC qualifications in this specification have been developed in the business sector to:
- Provide education and training for employees in the business sector.
- Provide business employees opportunities to achieve a nationally recognised level 3 vocationally specific qualification.
- Provide full-time learners the opportunity to enter employment in the business sector or to progress to vocational qualifications such as the Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Business.
- Provide learners the opportunity to develop a range of skills and techniques, personal skills and attributes essential for successful performance in working life.
* For the Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business, one specialist pathway title can be added to the qualification title if all the four units in that pathway have been completed. If more than one specialist pathway is completed, the learner must choose which one of the titles to add. For example, if Units 1-18 inclusive are completed by a learner, that learner can choose the title Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business (Accounting) or Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business (Marketing) or Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business (Human Resources). Learners do not have to select a complete pathway. The optional units can be selected from any of the Units 5-46.
All units are internally assessed in the BTEC qualifications in this specification. All assessment for the BTEC qualifications in this specification is criterion referenced, based on the achievement of specified learning outcomes. Each unit within the qualification has specified assessment and grading criteria which are to be used for grading purposes. A summative unit grade can be awarded at pass, merit or distinction:
- To achieve a ‘pass’ a learner must have satisfied all the pass assessment criteria
- To achieve a ‘merit’ a learner must additionally have satisfied all the merit grading criteria
- To achieve a ‘distinction’ a learner must additionally have satisfied all the distinction grading criteria.
Learners who complete the unit but who do not meet all the pass criteria are graded ‘unclassified’.
The grading criteria are developed in relation to grading domains which are exemplified by a number of indicative characteristics at the level of the qualification. There are four BTEC grading domains:
- Application of knowledge and understanding
- Development of practical and technical skills ● personal development for occupational roles
- Application of generic skills.
Pearson’s qualification specifications set out the standard to be achieved by each learner in order for them to gain the qualification. This is done throughout the learning outcomes, and assessment and grading criteria in each unit.
The BTEC qualifications in this specification consist of mandatory units and optional units. Optional units are designed to provide a focus to the qualification and more specialist opportunities.
For the BTEC qualifications, centres are free to offer the qualifications using any mode of delivery (such as full time, part time, evening only, distance learning) that meets their learners’ needs. Whichever mode of delivery is used, centres must ensure that learners have appropriate access to the resources identified in the specification and to the subject specialists delivering the units. This is particularly important for learners studying for the qualification through open or distance learning.
Learners studying for the qualification on a part-time basis bring with them a wealth of experience that should be utilised to maximum effect by tutors and assessors. The use of assessment evidence drawn from learners’ work environments should be encouraged. Those planning the programme should aim to enhance the vocational nature of the qualification by:
- Liaising with employers to ensure a course relevant to learners’ specific needs.
- Accessing and using non-confidential data and documents from learners’ workplaces.
- Including sponsoring employers in the delivery of the programme and, where appropriate, in the assessment.
- Linking with company-based/workplace training programmes.
- Making full use of the variety of experience of work and life that learners bring to the programme.
The BTEC qualifications in this specification are designed to prepare learners for employment in specific occupational sectors. Physical resources need to support the delivery of the programme and the proper assessment of the learning outcomes and should, therefore, normally be of industry standard. Staff delivering programmes and conducting the assessments are familiar with current practice and standards in the sector concerned.
- Pearson’s policy regarding access to its qualifications is that:
- They should be available to everyone who is capable of reaching the required standards
- They should be free from any barriers that restrict access and progression There should be equal opportunities for all wishing to access the qualifications.
Centres will need to review the entry profile of qualifications and/or experience held by applicants, considering whether this profile shows an ability to progress to a level 4 qualification. For learners who have recently been in education, the profile is likely to include one of the following:
- A level 2 BTEC qualification in business or a related vocational area.
- A standard of literacy and numeracy supported by a general education equivalent to four GCSEs at grade A*-C.
- Other related level 2 qualifications.
- Related work experience.
More mature learners may present a more varied profile of achievement that is likely to include experience of paid and/or unpaid employment.
Most BTEC qualifications are for learners aged 16 years and over. In particular sectors the restrictions on learner entry might also relate to any physical or legal barriers, for example people working in health, care or education are likely to be subject to Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks.
Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is a method of assessment (leading to the award of credit) that considers whether a learner can demonstrate that they can meet the assessment requirements for a unit through knowledge, understanding or skills they already possess and so do not need to develop through a course of learning.
Rearson encourages centres to recognise learners’ previous achievements and experiences whether at work, home and at leisure, as well as in the classroom. RPL provides a route for the recognition of the achievements resulting from continuous learning.
RPL enables recognition of achievement from a range of activities using any valid assessment methodology. Provided that the assessment requirements of a given unit or qualification have been met, the use of RPL is acceptable for accrediting a unit, units or a whole qualification. Evidence of learning must be valid and reliable.