What is the BTEC Business Level 3 Extended Certificate?

The BTEC Business Level 3 Extended Certificate is equivalent to 1 A-Level and carries the same level of UCAS (university entry points).  It can be studied alongside A-Levels or as a stand-alone course. It is a 6-month course.

New Specification from January 2020

Our BTEC Business Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma will be changing to the BTEC Business Level 3 Extended Certificate and will follow a new specification from January 2020. Whereas we have traditionally offered an exam-free programme, the new specification will include a small exam element in addition to coursework. Please find details of this change in the tabs below.

What will I study?

Students learn to research, give presentations, produce papers and projects, work in teams, develop their communication skills and study a wide range of business topics.  There is feedback at the end of each unit, allowing students to develop a clear sense of how they are progressing.

The structure of the qualification allows a great deal of choice and flexibility. All students take core units which introduce the fundamentals of business organisations as well as other units from more specialist areas.


Students will take 4 units in total, including 3 compulsory units:

  • Exploring business
  • Developing a marketing campaign
  • Personal & Business Finance (exam)

They will also take 1 optional unit, choosing from:

  • Recruitment and Selection
  • Investigating Customer service
  • Creative Product Promotion
  • Pitching for a New Business
  • Training and Development
  • Market research

How is it assessed?

Students could be assessed on:

  • Producing a Business plan
  • Creating a Powerpoint presentation
  • Designing Excel documents
  • Written documents, eg Memo, Report, briefing document
  • Longer written analysis and evaluation
  • Observation sheets from teachers
  • Witness statements

Exam board: Edexcel

Coursework – 42%

Supervised assessment (with pre- release material and research) – 47%

Formal exam – 11%

What do I need?

UK students – ideally 5 GCSEs grade C or above (or equivalent) including Maths and English. However there is the opportunity to retake Maths or English GCSE if you have not achieved it. Most importantly you must have the motivation to work extremely hard and to meet all deadlines as this is a highly intensive course equivalent to 1 A-Level in six months.


What is BTEC?

It is an internationally recognised qualification from the Edexcel exam board. The BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma is equivalent to 1 A-Level.


How is it graded?

It is graded as Distinction* (=A* at A-Level), Distinction (=A at A-Level), Merit (=C at A level) and Pass (= E at A-Level).


How long is the course?

It is a 6-month intensive course


Can I use a computer for the coursework?

Yes, all coursework is produced on a computer. Students are encouraged to bring in their own laptop.


Do I need Microsoft Office on my laptop?



Can I go to university with a BTEC?

Yes. You will need 2 A-Levels as well (e.g. For international students an A level in their own language is accepted by some universities). Some students study A-Levels alongside their BTEC whilst others might continue their AS (from last year) to A2. Some students choose the BTEC Subsidiary Diploma if they have already completed A-Levels (or plan to retake them) in order to get extra UCAS points.


Can I only study Business at university after this course?

No. There is a wide variety of degree courses open to you, e.g. Law, philosophy, Fashion, Politics etc