Computing (Computer Science) Level 3

A Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma is a nationally recognised qualification combining practical and theoretical study.This challenging programme will introduce you to a range of areas needed in a career as an IT professional. This advanced Computing Extended Diploma programme allows you to learn through a variety of methods including assignments and practical activities that are based on workplace situations. You will develop your existing skills in order to prepare you for an exciting career within the IT and Computing industries. Delivery is through practical work, classroom activities and group teaching.

I really benefited from the interactive learning – online resources are easily accessible on the student portal. We were also given the opportunity to undertake an internship; this has been invaluable and gave me a feel for the work environment.”Tanesha Brett - Computing Level 3

***Applications for full-time courses to start in September 2022 are open now!***

We want to make sure you have the best chance of securing a place with us. All full-time applications received by 31st of January 2022 will be guaranteed a place at Colchester Institute, subject to you satisfying the published entry requirements. We still accept applications after this date but may not be able to guarantee you a place on your chosen programme.

Application for this course are made by the ‘Apply Online’ buttons located in the menu further down the page.

If you are looking to start, or are a parent/guardian of a learner looking to start in September 2022, then bookings for our popular January Open Events are also open.

January Open Events

What Will I Learn?

You will study units equivalent to three A Levels. This course will help you develop the skills you need in order to understand the variety and complexity of the IT industry. Delivery is through practical work, classroom activities and group teaching. Each unit is individually assessed through coursework. There are 2 external examinations per year.

In addition to your main study programme you will also engage in activities to develop your English, Maths and employability skills.

You will study the Foundation Diploma in year one and the Extended Diploma in year two.

Course Content

Computing BTEC Foundation/Extended Diploma Level 3 modules may include:

Year 1

  • Principles of Computer Science (Written exam)
  • Fundamentals of Computer Systems (Written exam)
  • IT Systems Security and Encryption
  • Business Applications of Social Media
  • Computer Games Development
  • Website Development

Year 2

  • Planning and Management of Computing Projects (Controlled Assessment)
  • Software Design and Development Project (Controlled Assessment)
  • The Impact of Computing (Mandatory)
  • Mobile App Development
  • HCI
  • Computer Networking
  • Virtualisation
Entry Requirements
  • 5 GCSEs (9-4) including English and Maths, or satisfactory results (Merit/Distinction) in a relevant Level 2 qualification
  • An interview.
Career Opportunities

Students may go into careers in many IT related disciplines in a wide variety of businesses. Areas of employment may include: Network Engineering, IT User Support, Software Engineering, Games Development, Cybersecurity, Project Management and Web Development.

Course Progression

Successful completion of the Extended Diploma will enable entry into many Universities, Degree Apprenticeships and Apprenticeships and also enable entry onto other degree programmes at Colchester Institute.

How to make an Application – Watch our video guide!

We have also prepared a step-by-step video guide – please view this video which will guide you through the application process.

Computing (Computer Science) Level 3
LevelLevel 3
DurationTwo years
Year 1: Foundation Diploma
Year 2: Extended Diploma
Study ModeFull-Time
CampusColchester Campus
Braintree Campus
Start DateSeptember 2022 - Applications open on 1st October 2021
Fee(s)16-18 year olds: Free
19+: £8,583 (This fee covers the full two-year course)


All Fees and prices shown on this page are for courses starting in the 2021-22 academic year unless stated otherwise, and are correct at the time of entering/printing information, however these may be subject to change. The College cannot accept legal or financial liability as a result of any such changes.

The course information describes programmes offered by Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.