Not sure what BTECs have to offer you? Wondering how they compare with A-levels?


We've put the community's questions toward Julie Newlan, pro vice-chancellor of enterprise at the University of Hertfordshire, to uncover the truth about A-levels.


1. Do I have a chance of going to university with a BTEC? KimKardashian_



Of course! BTEC Extended Diplomas are equivalent to A-levels and each BTEC qualification equals a number of tariff points which can be added together to reach the entry tariff required for a course at university.

Some courses will require specific qualificatione, such as an A-level in science. However, this will be clearly stated on the university’s website and if you are in any doubt you can contact the admissions team at your chosen university and they will let you know if your BTEC will be accepted.

2. I’m doing a BTEC, should I be realistic when picking where to apply to university? mihail211


It is important to research which courses and which universities will accept BTEC qualifications.

Most universities accept BTEC qualifications, in fact if you achieve a DDD (three distinction) profile for your extended diploma, that is equivalent to 144 new UCAS points which is three A* A levels.

The entry requirements will be clearly stated on the university’s website. Once you know which universities accept your qualification, you can start to decide which university will be the best fit for you.

3. Will I struggle with exams at university if I did a BTEC compared to someone that did A-levels? rkhan57



Although you may have had less practice at taking exams if you chose to study a BTEC qualification rather than A-level, there will be plenty of additional support on-hand at your chosen university.

Most universities offer an academic support drop-in service where you can go along and ask any questions you may have about your studies or get top tips for revising and taking exams. There is also plenty exam advice online on revision websites.

Finally don’t forget, you probably won’t be the only one in your class with a BTEC, tutors will have plenty of experience with BTEC students and will support and advise them on how they can succeed in their exams.

4. By taking the BTEC route to university, will it affect my chances of future employment? Dave9520


Applying to university via a BTEC route should not affect your chances of future employment.

BTECs are much more vocational and provide the skills that employers are looking for, they are therefore highly regarded by employers.

The knowledge and skills you develop whilst at university will top up your skills and help you to secure a successful career after you graduate.

5. What do international universities think of BTECs? Charles97



BTECs are highly recognised qualifications in the UK and abroad. Therefore, just as UK universities accept students with international qualifications, international universities also accept BTEC students.

It does depend on the university and the course that you’re looking to do, however in essence you should not have any problems getting into international universities as long as you meet their entry criteria.

More on TSR:

Doing a BTEC? Come chat in the official forum

Find the uni you want to study at right here

Need help applying for uni? Click right here


6. Do universities accept a mix of A-levels and BTEC Level 3? definitelyjuliet



Yes, many universities will accept a combination of A-levels and BTEC qualifications to reach the entry tariff points required for individual courses.

More and more students are choosing to study for a combination of qualifications, helping to create a well-rounded skill base which is particularly desirable to universities.

For advice on whether your chosen university will accept both BTECs and A-levels, take a look at their individual websites.

7. Do universities favour A-levels over BTEC? Or does it depend on what I’m applying to do? Ania_bodz


This will depend on individual courses at each university.

Some courses will require specific A-level qualifications, whereas some, particularly vocational courses, will prefer the skills that students with BTEC qualifications have developed.

8. How do I know if a university will accept my BTEC? joe1359



Whether or not universities will accept BTEC qualifications will be stated on the course pages of each university’s website.

If you are in any doubt you can contact the admissions team at your chosen university and they will let you know if your BTEC will be accepted.



9. Is BTEC a well-recognised qualification? Superhotfire


BTEC qualifications are increasing in popularity and are both well-known and well respected.

Many universities favour the vocational skills that BTEC qualifications provide and BTEC extended diplomas are equivalent to three A-levels.

10. Is it possible to get into university with a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Public Services? What are my degree possibilities? -fluffy-



It will depend on the grade you achieved for your extended diploma and whether you studied for any additional qualifications.

Some courses will require specific qualifications, for example an A-level in science or maths. However many courses will only require a specific number of UCAS points in addition to GCSE maths and science at grade 4 (C) or above.

For example if you achieve a ‘DMM’ grade for the Level 3 Extended Diploma this will equate to 112 new UCAS points. At a number of universities this would allow you entry onto many subjects including humanities, business, computing, economics, education, geography and law degrees.

The best thing to do is to look at your chosen universities and see what their entry requirements are for public services courses.

11. I have a Level 3 Mechanical Engineering Diploma and I want to apply for university. What choices do I have in terms of courses? kelvin_pangg


The options available to you with a Level 3 Mechanical Engineering Diploma will depend on the grade you achieved and whether you have studied for any additional qualifications.

Some engineering courses will require you to have an additional A-level in maths, so it is best to check on the website of your chosen university.

Many courses do not specify a particular qualification or subject, so as long as you meet the correct entry tariff, you will be considered for a place. Examples of these courses are humanities, business, computing, economics, education, geography and law degrees.


Are you considering studying BTECs? Do you have more questions about this qualification? Add your thoughts about BTEC in the comments below.


More on TSR:

Doing a BTEC? Come chat in the official forum

Find the uni you want to study at right here

Need help applying for uni? Click right here