Which course is right for me?

Which level is right for me?

a level vs btec1

Kidderminster College specialises in BTEC (Business and Technology Education Council) and vocational qualifications. Rather than choose three subject areas, BTEC’s and vocational courses allow you to specialise in one area; this means that you will get devoted time, expertise and industry knowledge on that one subject that sparks your interest; giving you the ultimate edge when it comes to seeking employment.

A-Levels focus on academic, classroom-based learning with written exams at the end, which, although seen as a traditional path, is not something that suits everyone nor is necessarily the optimum route into your chosen career. We all learn differently and we all want different outcomes for our future after all!

In contrast, a BTEC is a high quality hands-on qualification grounded in the real world of work, they allow you to:

• Create a substantial subject based portfolio and skillset which will give you an edge when it comes to progression on from Kidderminster College.

• Is designed for individuals who are interested in a particular sector or industry, but who are still a bit uncertain about what job they would like to enter into.

• They combine practical learning with subject and theory content.

• They are assessed via coursework, an ever-growing portfolio and project work throughout your study time, you will have to do a few exams as well. 

• Allow you to learn by doing, so you are able to put what you learn straight into practice.

In previous years, BTECs have attracted jibes for being an easier option, because of their vocational, less academic nature. However, this criticism is quickly disappearing as more students take this path to university and beyond.
As a result, universities have adapted their entry requirements and will widely communicate BTEC requirements alongside those for A-Levels. According to UCAS, the number of successful university applicants applying with at least one BTEC has increased a whole 12% to 26% from 2008 to 2015 (that’s less than two-thirds now applying with the traditional three A-Levels). In fact, 30% of successful Oxford applicants apply with qualifications other than A-Levels.


What is a BTEC qualification?

BTEC stands for the Business and Technology Education Council. It’s a qualification that’s based on practical study rather than academic study. A BTEC is a vocational qualification, which means that it has a career focus and is grounded in the world of work. BTEC students study to gain skills and knowledge in their subject area, then put those skills into practice in real-life scenarios.

Do Kidderminster College offer any A levels?

We’re a vocational / BTEC only college!


Can I still get into University with a BTEC qualification?

Of course you can! Almost all Universities accept vocational qualifications. More and more students are applying to Universities with BTECs, institutions recognise the value of BTEC.

Are BTECs as academic as A levels?

No! They are more practical based, you gain the skills as well as the knowledge.

Is BTEC the easier option?

Not necessarily! A BTEC level 3 Qualification is equivalent to A levels, it all depends on how you learn and what career path you want to take.

Do employers prefer A levels?

No! In fact employers may prefer more practical experience, which is what BTEC offers.

Will studying BTEC limit my options?

No, BTEC can open up a lot of opportunities whether you choose to go into work or higher education.

How can I learn more about BTEC?

To find out which education path is the best fit for you, speak to your careers advisors and do your research. If you think a vocational course is the right choice for you, come along to our open evenings, speak to our teachers, APPLY and come in for an interview.

Still undecided about what course to study, check out our Career Coach to help you find the right course for you!