BTEC Health Studies or A Levels for Nursing? Watch

burninginme
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I want to do a Nursing degree, but I'm unsure as to what A Levels I would need to take. Most people who go the BTEC route do Health Studies, however, that course isn't particularly sciency, and although it covers some Biology, it's quite basic compared to that of A Level. So, if I was to do A Levels, why do people say I almost certainly will be required to have A Level Biology, and yet BTEC studients effectively don't cover it? Currently, I have choosen English LangLit, Geography and Computing as my AS subjects. I was debating with the idea of changing Geography to Biology, but I'm worried about work load and general difficulty compared to other subjects.

I'm not looking to go to a really respected university, so will I be able to do Nursing without A Level Biology, or is it generally a requirement for most Universities?
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Plato123
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I don't think you will get into a 'repected' University with a BTEC, although it depends on your definition of 'respected'.

Studying Biology and Chemistry would help.
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burninginme
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(Original post by Plato123)
I don't think you will get into a 'repected' University with a BTEC, although it depends on your definition of 'respected'.

Studying Biology and Chemistry would help.
That's what I was getting at really. No offence, but BTEC students generally are just limited to the ex-polytechnic universities, however, without Biology at A Level, would I be able to go to an ex-polytecnic and study Nursing? Or would I need Biology regardless?
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Spotty Dog
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Why not look into whether your chosen unis accept the BTEC?
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by burninginme)
That's what I was getting at really. No offence, but BTEC students generally are just limited to the ex-polytechnic universities, however, without Biology at A Level, would I be able to go to an ex-polytecnic and study Nursing? Or would I need Biology regardless?
I don't wish to contradict this, but I had an offer from Bath Spa for my BTEC. :p: Just to show there is SOME hope.
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burninginme
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(Original post by Spotty Dog)
I don't wish to contradict this, but I had an offer from Bath Spa for my BTEC. :p: Just to show there is SOME hope.
Not saying it's impossible, it's just that BTEC students are at quite a big disadvantage at a higher up the league tables university due to A Level bias.
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by burninginme)
Not saying it's impossible, it's just that BTEC students are at quite a big disadvantage at a higher up the league tables university due to A Level bias.
Oh yeah, I understand that. I was just letting the OP know that some 'good' unis accept the BTEC. Although you have to work damn hard to get in - My offer from Bath was DDDd
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burninginme
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(Original post by Spotty Dog)
Oh yeah, I understand that. I was just letting the OP know that some 'good' unis accept the BTEC. Although you have to work damn hard to get in - My offer from Bath was DDDd
So, in theory, you have to work harder at BTEC than at A Level to get into a university? As I'm guessing most universities that accept BTECs are looking for a minimum of MMM, or DMM? While you could probably get into a universitry with something like DDE, or DDD at A Level.
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by burninginme)
So, in theory, you have to work harder at BTEC than at A Level to get into a university? As I'm guessing most universities that accept BTECs are looking for a minimum of MMM, or DMM? While you could probably get into a universitry with something like DDE, or DDD at A Level.
Yeah, I'd say so. I'd also say, having experiences both, that the BTEC is harder work generally. Balancing what you're learning in theory into practise, along with the three assignments for each of your 18 units (54 pieces of coursework on average - Some units ask for 4 pieces of coursework though) can be a real struggle sometimes.
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burninginme
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(Original post by Spotty Dog)
Yeah, I'd say so. I'd also say, having experiences both, that the BTEC is harder work generally. Balancing what you're learning in theory into practise, along with the three assignments for each of your 18 units (54 pieces of coursework on average - Some units ask for 4 pieces of coursework though) can be a real struggle sometimes.
54 pieces of coursework? Wow, sounds tough going, lol. So, how does the requirments of the BTEC coursework pieces compare to requirments of A Level? So, over the 2 years of 3 A Levels, how many pieces of coursework would you expect to be doing? Baring in mind exams, I'm assuming less?

It has been described to me that with BTEC, you work your arse off consistantly all your round, and with A Levels you can be quite laid back the first three quaters of the year, and then on the run up to the exams, work your ass off and come out with a decent grade?
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by burninginme)
54 pieces of coursework? Wow, sounds tough going, lol. So, how does the requirments of the BTEC coursework pieces compare to requirments of A Level? So, over the 2 years of 3 A Levels, how many pieces of coursework would you expect to be doing? Baring in mind exams, I'm assuming less?

It has been described to me that with BTEC, you work your arse off consistantly all your round, and with A Levels you can be quite laid back the first three quaters of the year, and then on the run up to the exams, work your ass off and come out with a decent grade?
This is pretty much it.

If you imagine that each piece of coursework set - I'll try and find one of my Assignment sheets to show you - Have all the criteria laid out on it. You have Pass, Merit and Distinction - and for each piece, you've got maybe 3-6 pass criteria (which you fail if you don't get) 1-3 merit criteria (which you can't get without all pass criteria being met) and 1/2/3 distinction criteria (which you can't meet without pass and merit).

That's a crap explanation, by the way. XD Coursework starts around week 3 or 4 and runs through until the very last day.
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Spotty Dog
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The only marking sheet I could find was for my Independent Research Project, which was slightly different because it was ongoing throughout the year. Nevertheless, it's split into 3 sections (as most units would be) and gives you an idea of the level of work and the amount needed. The amount was about the same, no matter what the uni (Mostly Passes, Some merits, a few distinctions)

This particular unit was spread over a year. Most were done in a term, and all but this were done in, at most, two terms.

.. Except the files are too large!!

TO TINYPIC!!!



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burninginme
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(Original post by Spotty Dog)
The only marking sheet I could find was for my Independent Research Project, which was slightly different because it was ongoing throughout the year. Nevertheless, it's split into 3 sections (as most units would be) and gives you an idea of the level of work and the amount needed. The amount was about the same, no matter what the uni (Mostly Passes, Some merits, a few distinctions)

This particular unit was spread over a year. Most were done in a term, and all but this were done in, at most, two terms.

.. Except the files are too large!!

TO TINYPIC!!!



Thanks, that's really helpful. From that, I gather the way they're structured it is for you to write a basic shell of the coursework, in order to obtain a Pass, and then keep refering to the individual tasks in order to add more detail in the areas it says to go up the ladder from Pass, to Merit to Distinction.

I get the impression that BTEC's really are for people who know what career they want and generally know where they want to be, as BTECs are obviously the same subject for 2 years. I've been considering doing a BTEC, but I'm not 100% sure what I want to do and I feel that there is so much coursework, and you have to be really detailed in order to achieve the higher grades that I could end up giving up. It really does look heavy going.
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by burninginme)

I get the impression that BTEC's really are for people who know what career they want and generally know where they want to be, as BTECs are obviously the same subject for 2 years. I've been considering doing a BTEC, but I'm not 100% sure what I want to do and I feel that there is so much coursework, and you have to be really detailed in order to achieve the higher grades that I could end up giving up. It really does look heavy going.
It is heavy going, but it's also extremely well supported. Most colleges offer a good counselling service to help you through the coursework (ie teachers will sit with you and explain what each of the criteria is asking for), and most colleges also offer a resubmission process - You submit the coursework, and get a feedback sheet with any improvements to be made, then get one more shot at achieving your grades. So if you don't get it first time, you've got a second chance.

I feel they are highly respected in the areas they teach, particularly with the vocational aspect. I think a student with BTEC is more likely to get into childcare than a student with A-Levels, you know?
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katie999
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Hello, I study BTEC National Diploma Level 3, Health and social care, Health studies. I have got into the University of East Anglia (UEA) for Adult Nursing, BcS Degree. So did 2 other people in my class and 5 more in the other group to us. BTEC courses which study science subjects are 'respected' just as much as A levels. As it all equates down to UCAS points. Dont stress about it. Hope this helps.
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katie999
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(Original post by Spotty Dog)
It is heavy going, but it's also extremely well supported. Most colleges offer a good counselling service to help you through the coursework (ie teachers will sit with you and explain what each of the criteria is asking for), and most colleges also offer a resubmission process - You submit the coursework, and get a feedback sheet with any improvements to be made, then get one more shot at achieving your grades. So if you don't get it first time, you've got a second chance.

I feel they are highly respected in the areas they teach, particularly with the vocational aspect. I think a student with BTEC is more likely to get into childcare than a student with A-Levels, you know?
I completely agree with this. I think BTEC's are a fantastic option these days, as they provide vocational experience (placements), along with academic work. Also, a health and social care BTEC is probably best one to do I feel, as it opens much more doors if you are unsure what career you want.
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Pippie2222
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Hey - I know this is an older forum - but I have applied for Health and Social Care Level 3 BTEC diploma and am quite worried now from reading some of the posts on this forum that say you have little chance of being offered a place at a good uni with BTEC. Having looked at quite a number of uni websites (including the top ones for nursing such as King's College London) they all say they accept BTECS so I am quite confused as to what these people mean?
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notthegreatest
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Want my advice?... STAY AWAY from Btec health and social care if you want to be a nurse... UNLESS your going to take up biology or/and chemistry along with it, otherwise don't do it at all... Believe me when I say this but most Btec students who go to university tend to fail at uni.. And I'm one of them... I regret not doing A-levels when I had the chance to... Even an access course is 100 times better than Btec health and social care... If you want to do Btec you should pick a Btec actual "science" course that involves biology and chemistry.
Btec health and social care is actually better for people who want to become Social workers but they are completely rubbish for people who want to get into nursing or midwifery.
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notthegreatest
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Btecs are good... But they are not good for people who want to work in "Hospital/Hospice/clinical fields" and that means nursing... They are only good for people who want to become Social/psychological or nursery-nurse workers... But rubbish for those who want to work in hospitals or similar areas... Yeah they accept Btec students but most of the student who go in to university have to put extra work and study more... Although chemistry isn't really an exam on the first year... The lack of knowledge in it will put you down... And biology... Most of the work in university for nursing is biology and psychology based and involves a lot of maths, you get taught some biochemistry along with it too as well but it's not really an exam till your next year.
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nickiibwfc7
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I did Btec Health and Social care at college and i do nursing ... no problem at all. As long as you put the work in you'll be fine
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