Public Services
Faculty of Healthcare, Childcare and Public Services
Faculty Level Location Length Ask Apply
Healthcare, Childcare and Public Services Level 3 - BTEC Level 3 Foundation Diploma/Extended Diploma Hele Road site 1-2 years

What is it like to study this course and how will I be assessed?

This advanced level course is designed to give you the knowledge and skills which will enable you to pursue a career in one of the Public Services (including: the Police, Fire Service, Ambulance Service, Armed Forces, Prison Service, HM Revenue and Customs, as well as community services such as Probation and Social Services). In your first year you will study the Foundation Diploma progressing to the Extended Diploma in your second year. You will be assessed through assignment work using a variety of methods, with the possibility of some external assessments. The completion of the two year course is equivalent to three A Levels.

What topics will I study?

You will study the following subject areas:

Foundation Diploma:

  • Government Policies in the Public Services
  • Leadership and Teamwork in the Public Services
  • Citizenship, Diversity and the Public Services
  • Fitness Testing and Training in the Public Services
  • Understand the impact or War, Conflict and Terrorism on Public Services
  • Skills for Land Based Outdoor Adventurous Activities
  • Planning and Management of Major Incidents
  • Police Powers in the Public Services
  • Exercise, Health and Lifestyle

Extended Diploma

Understanding Discipline in the Uniformed Public Services

  • Physical Preparation, Health and Lifestyle for the Public Services
  • Skills for Water-based Outdoor Adventurous Activities
  • Crime and its Affects on Society
  • Command and Control in the Uniformed Public Services
  • Responding to Emergency Service Incidents
  • Communication and Technology in the Uniformed Public Services
  • Aspects of the Legal System and the Law Making Process
  • Extended Research Project in Public Services

What experiences will I get?

You will undertake residentials and various visits whilst you are on the course as well as opportunities to interact with members of the various public services on a regular basis.

What are the entry requirements?

English and maths entry requirements: Grade 4 in English language and in maths.
Plus standard entry requirements: Three GCSEs at grade 4 or above, or equivalent.
Subject specific entry requirements or recommendations: Two additional GCSEs at grade 3 or above or equivalent qualifications.

What can I study alongside this course?

This course is studied on its own and cannot be combined with other courses.

What facilities are there?

You will have access to a learning centre and there is a refectory within the Hele Building.  You will also have access to a variety of enrichment programmes throughout the college.


What can the course lead on to?

This course provides a natural progression into employment in the Public Services, although the course also provides a fantastic opportunity for Personal and Professional Development towards a career in the world of work or as an Apprentice. The course underpins leadership, teamwork, organisation and problem solving qualities which are essential to future development. Alternatively, you may progress to higher education where pervious learners have studied Criminology, Paramedic, Outdoor Leadership or one of the Healthcare, Childcare and Public Services Foundation Degrees.

Are there any additional costs?

You will need to purchase your own stationery and some equipment for outdoor pursuits (walking boots, waterproofs, rucksack etc). Some equipment can be borrowed from the faculty. A fee of approximately £440 (£220 per year) is charged which covers the cost of embedding practical activities through the year including a residential, land and water based activities and practical sessions which enhance the learning opportunities linked to modules. Financial help may be available for students/families who are on a low income.

What do our students think?

My favourite part of the course has been going on Dartmoor with the Army. It's great at the college and there's a lot to help you with the course including computer facilities. I didn't expect the course to be as fun as it has been. My tip for future students would be to stay on top of course work, you'll find your time here will fly by. I'm hoping to join the police force."

My favourite part of the course has been taking part in the residential trip on Dartmoor. During the trip, we took part in a range of activities including caving, rock climbing, bush craft, land and night navigation and archery. We were delivered valuable skills from ex Public Services personnel who made learning enjoyable and relevant. My lecturers and tutor have been extremely supportive throughout the course providing and excellent environment to enhance my learning. They have also supported me to progress in to the Military Police after receiving information about all the potential Public Services opportunities.” 

This further education course is free for all 16-18 year olds who are resident in the UK and the European Economic Area for the last 3 years. (You must be under 19 on 31st August in the calendar year that you start your course). For any fee-related queries or further information, please contact the Advice and Recruitment Team on 01392 400444.

College Prospectus

course news

The Public Services Team were delighted to have former students Rob Clatworthy and Matt Tregale both of whom are currently Devon and Cornwall Police Special Constables visiting them to deliver a presentation on the 'Benefits of Volunteering for the Police Service' to our year 2 Extended Diploma Level 3 students.

Students also recently visited RAF Brize Norton:

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