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Level: Advanced (Level 3)Awarding Body: Edexcel

Why study Health and Social Care?


If you want to make a positive difference in people’s lives, then studying Health and Social Care is for you. To study Health & Social Care, you need to be interested in working with people. It is also important that you develop a greater understanding about Health & Social Care professionals such as: nurses and social workers and how they support individuals when they are in need of help. This might include understanding the support that an elderly client with dementia might need.

Important Skills to develop include:

  • empathy,
  • communication and
  • problem-solving

These skills are transferable to a wide range of situations. Indeed, studying health and social care in everyday life will enable you to better understand institutions such as: the National Health Services and Community Care.

What can it lead to?

Health and Social Care is a vocational qualification. Students who are interested in pursuing a career in a health or social care profession or seeking employment, the opportunities are endless.

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care can lead to:


  • Employment: Care Worker, Support Worker, Nursery assistant
  • Apprenticeships
  • Higher Education to study:
    • Nursing or midwifery  
    • Health & Social Care,
    • Social work,
    • Youth and Community Work
    • Early Childhood Studies
    • Teaching
    • Occupational therapy

How is the course organised?

The Examination Board is Pearson Edexcel. Students will be studying 13 units over the duration of two years, including:

Unit 1 Human Lifespan Development – (Externally Assessed)

Unit 2 Working in Health and Social Care – (Externally Assessed))

Unit 3 Anatomy and Physiology for Health and Social Care –  

         (Externally Assessed)

Unit 4 Enquiries into Current Research in Health and Social Care –

          (Externally Assessed)

Unit 5 Meeting Individual Care and Support Needs

Unit 6 Work Experience in Health and Social Care

Unit 7 Principles of Safe Practice in Health and Social Care

Unit 8 Promoting Public Health

Unit 10 Sociological Perspectives

Unit 11 Psychological Perspectives

Unit 12 Supporting Individuals with Additional Needs

Unit 14 Physiological Disorders and their Care

Unit 16 Policy in Health and Social Care

Unit 19 Nutritional Health

Unit 20 Understanding Mental Wellbeing

How is the course assessed?

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care is assessed through both external examinations and coursework. You will study 13 units in total. Units 1 to 8 is mandatory and there are 4 exam units.

You will need to be very organized, focused and study hard for your exams, as well as, balance your time well to complete coursework.

Exam units

Units 1 to 4 are assessed through external examinations. Exams are offered twice per year – January and May/June. Each student can achieve Level 3 Pass or Distinction.

Coursework units

Each student can achieve a PASS standard, MERIT standard or DISTINCTION standard grade upon successful completion of the relevant criteria.

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care is equivalent to 3 A levels with a D*D*D* being equivalent to 3 A levels at grade A.

What do I need to qualify for this course?

The General entry requirements are five GCSEs grades 9-4 for an Advanced Vocational programme, including English Language, and a grade 4 or MM and above in Extended Certificate Level 2.

Students interested in studying teaching at university (primary education) need a grade C in Mathematics

Students interested in studying nursing and social work at university need a grade C in Mathematics

It is important to be interested in working in the caring field in the future and for students to have a caring nature including empathy.

Who are the teachers?

Ms Cahill has worked in Sixth Form Education for over 20 years and has previous experience of working in secondary schools. She also used to work for Westminster Play Association with children aged 4 – 11, organising activities and events. She has a B. Ed (Hons) and MSc.

Ms Housen is the Subject Area Leader with over 20 years experience teaching in secondary schools, FE and Sixth Form colleges. She has a BSc. (Hons.); Master in Teaching and PGCE.

Mr Fuller is an experienced teacher of Health & Social Care. He also worked as a Public Service Lecturer and has experience in Youth Work. He has a BSc. (Hons.) in Social Sciences and PGCE.

Ms Okpara is an experienced teacher with over 11 years of teaching Health & Social Care. She has a BSc. in Industrial Chemistry and MSc. in Educational Leadership.

What do students say about the course?

 "Studying Health and Social Care has helped me improve my way of thinking, attitude towards others and analytical skills. I have learnt a lot in such little time and I’m very grateful. My teachers are very helpful and always one step ahead when it comes to work."

"The Health & Social Care teachers are friendly and always looking to support whatever help you need. I felt comfortable with them immediately which really kickstarted my learning on a positive note. The subject has really helped me understand and look up to the people that work within the sector, making me feel privileged and empowered to be able to now pursue this at the end of the 2 year course."


"The Health & Social Care teachers are extremely supportive throughout the course and respond to the last-minute queries as soon they can. Studying this course for three years has helped shape my character and allowed me to take on skills, that can be used in my future career." 

"I feel that Health and Social Care helped me to be clear about what I want to do in the future. In Year 13, I am hoping to apply for Children’s Nursing and my work experience should support my application." (Level 3 student at end of Year 12)

"Health and Social Care seemed relatively easy in Year 12 but was more demanding in Year 13. I am really pleased I did this course – I feel it helped to develop my understanding not just about health & social care but about life in general." (Year 13 student at the end of the course)

Extra Curricular: Work Experience

Throughout the BTEC course, students will learn how to develop both their study and writing skills for examination and assignment completion success.  Hence, as part of the course, students will: study and practice how to write examinations; complete coursework using appropriate references; take part in a variety of activities including work experience placement visits; group assignments, presentations and observations. A large amount of study skills and research work is required and students are expected to use a number of information sources such as: textbooks, journals, the internet, TV, newspapers and past examination papers.

The Level 3 Extended Diploma course contains compulsory work experience for Unit 6.  Appropriate time will be allocated so that students can attend work experience placement to complete relevant assignment tasks.