BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Computing


Examination Board: Pearson


Who should take the course?


This qualification is designed to support learners who are interested in learning about the computing sector alongside other fields of study, with a view to progressing to a wide range of higher education courses, not necessarily in the computing sector.

You will enjoy this course if you are interested in increasing your knowledge of computer science whilst developing employability skills such as:

  • Cognitive and problem-solving skills
  • Intrapersonal skills like communicating, working collaboratively, negotiation
  • Interpersonal skills like self-management, adaptability, resilience



What is the course about?




Unit 1

Principles of Computer Science

(external written examination )

This unit covers the principles that underpin all areas of computer science. It will develop your computational-thinking skills and you will apply those skills to solve problems.

Unit 2

Fundamentals of Computer Science

(external written examination)

Learners study the fundamental principles of how computer systems work, including the role of hardware and software, the way components of a system work together and how data in a system is used.

Unit 7

IT Systems Security and Encryption

(internally set coursework)

Learners will study IT system security threats and the methods used to protect against them. Learners undertake activities to protect IT systems from security threats, including data encryption.



Unit 14

Computer Games Development

(internally set coursework)

Learners investigate the computer games industry and its impact on technological and social trends. They will design and develop a computer game to meet requirements.



How is it assessed?


Unit 1 and 2 are assessed by externally set and marked examinations. The other two units are assessed by internally set assignment tasks marked by your teacher and moderated by Pearson.



Where will it take me?


The BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Computing, when taken alongside other Level 3 qualifications such as A Levels, provides an opportunity to progress to higher education to study a BTEC Higher National in a computing discipline, a degree in a computing discipline or a degree where computing-related skills and knowledge may be advantageous, such as business studies.