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Choose a BTEC to Open the Door to University or Employment

15 December 2016

Did you know that more than one million students in the UK choose to study BTEC qualifications each year, with a quarter of all university places going to those progressing from BTEC courses?

What’s more, BTECs provide a clear route to the workplace, with research from London Economics showing that 90% of BTEC graduates go on to full-time employment.

BTEC has launched a national campaign to make students and parents aware of the benefits of doing a BTEC qualification, as an alternative to A Levels. The campaign is backed by former Dragon’s Den mogul and successful entrepreneur, Peter Jones CBE, as well as senior university figures and successful BTEC graduates, who emphasise how valuable BTEC qualifications are to gaining employment or a place at university.

In fact, BTEC Nationals are the most widely-recognised qualification for admission to higher education, with 95% of UK universities and colleges accepting students with BTEC qualifications, including competitive universities from the Russell Group (Which? University, 2015).

At Gloucestershire College, students can study towards BTEC qualifications in a wide range of subjects, including Arts and Media, Health and Social Care, Computing, Business, Uniformed Public Services, Outdoor Education and Sport. Early Years students can also work towards CACHE qualifications – the BTEC equivalent in their industry.

Dr Karen Morris, Assistant Principal of Study Programmes at GC said: “BTEC nationals are an equivalent to three A Levels and provide the exact same UCAS points required for entry to university.

“The courses are designed to prepare learners for employment in a given sector but also teach important transferable skills, useful to a range of careers. They provide a base of knowledge and essential study skills to prepare learners for higher education, that’s why universities are recognising how well prepared these learners are for higher level courses.

“The BTEC students at Gloucestershire College work on a wide range of employer designed projects and have access to work related experiences that support them to be successful.”

Former GC student Daniel Baldwin completed a Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care and is now at the University of Worcester working towards a Degree in Adult Nursing.

He said: “My course provided me with a stable foundation from which I can continue to develop as I work throughout my educational journey to becoming a qualified nurse.”

Jamie Rickards completed a Level 3 BTEC Diploma in Art and Design at GC, and is now a Junior Graphic Designer at MRA Marketing.

Jamie said: “I’ll always remember college as the place where I learnt to really be myself.

“Studying Art and Design at GC made it possible for me to go on to university and achieve my degree, which was essential to starting my career.”

To make it easier to understand the route from a BTEC qualification to university, BTEC has produced a student guide, containing the UCAS points awarded to each qualification and how these compare to A Levels. The guide also explains the different qualification levels, how they are assessed and the subject areas BTECs cover.

The Guide for Students is available to download here or students and parents can visit  to access the information online.

To find out more about BTEC courses at Gloucestershire College visit or come along to a GC Open Evening.

Why Gloucestershire College?

We have a lot of experience offering Apprenticeships and work-related training. We have industry-standard facilities and experienced teaching staff which provide the ideal complement to work-based learning.

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90% of students would recommend GC and 95% said that the teaching on their course was good.

Ofsted has rated us good.

  • We offer industry relevant facilities
  • Our lecturers are passionate subject specialists
  • Employers value our students' skills

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