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BTEC criminology

I want to study psychology at university or go into teaching but I’m not sure if I should do a level biology or btec criminology do all universities accept criminology? I live in the uk in England im really not sure

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Original post by Alishba93839
I want to study psychology at university or go into teaching but I’m not sure if I should do a level biology or btec criminology do all universities accept criminology? I live in the uk in England im really not sure

Presumably the BTEC in Criminology would be an Extended Certificate - so equivalent to a single A level. Is that right? What other A levels / BTECs / etc. would you be taking along side it?
Reply 2
Original post by DataVenia
Presumably the BTEC in Criminology would be an Extended Certificate - so equivalent to a single A level. Is that right? What other A levels / BTECs / etc. would you be taking along side it?

omg thank you so much for replying I’m honestly not sure if single criminology is equal to one level I think it is. Alongside it I’d be studying a level psychology and sociology. Instead of criminology i was gonna do a level biology but the content seems so hard idk if I’ll be able to do it exams stress me out a lot😭. Im thinking of going into educational psychology for that I need a psychology degree would universities care if I didn’t do biology? Sorry for writing paragraphs🙏🏻 oh and a lot of people have said to me since im not sure what I wanna be wen im older I should do biology to keep my options open but I don’t see myself going into anything science related so Im not sure
Original post by Alishba93839
omg thank you so much for replying I’m honestly not sure if single criminology is equal to one level I think it is. Alongside it I’d be studying a level psychology and sociology. Instead of criminology i was gonna do a level biology but the content seems so hard idk if I’ll be able to do it exams stress me out a lot😭. Im thinking of going into educational psychology for that I need a psychology degree would universities care if I didn’t do biology? Sorry for writing paragraphs🙏🏻 oh and a lot of people have said to me since im not sure what I wanna be wen im older I should do biology to keep my options open but I don’t see myself going into anything science related so Im not sure

OK, great. For university entrance you have two things to consider then: the entry requirements in terms of subjects, and the entry requirements in terms of qualifications.

For Psychology they'll either not care what the subjects are, or they'll specify that you should have Mathematics or a Science-related A level - and they always (as far as I've seen) include Psychology in the list of subjects they consider science subjects. So you're fine. Occasionally, you'll come across those which specify two science subjects, but you can just ignore those unis.

Before we move onto the BTEC, two things to consider:
1. You say that you "don’t see myself going into anything science related". Psychology is a science. :smile: At university there will be maths involved (for statistical analysis of research data). There will be biology involved (because the brain and our hormones have a significant impact on our behaviour).
2. If you want to be an Educational Psychologist you will need to take a postgraduate degree after your Psychology degree. That postgraduate degree will be a doctorate. (The job title "Educational Psychologist" is legally protected. You need to be registered with the Health & Care Professions Council to use it. They get to decide the qualification necessary for registration. To register as an Educational Psychologist you will need to take a Doctorate in Educational Psychology - DEdPsy.)

The BTEC in Criminology will generally make it harder to work out whether you meet the entry requirements or not. For example, at University of Bath (which I just picked at random) you need to scroll quite far down their Entry Requirements (here) before you come across a statement which says, "We accept Level 3 Diplomas and Extended Certificates alongside A levels or in combination with each other. You will need qualifications equal to at least three A levels to be considered." They then link you to a page which points our that you'd need two A levels plus a BTEC Extended Certificate. Bath is one of the unis which don't have any subject requirements, so Criminology would be fine.

Let's pick another university at random. University of Wolverhampton. They want 96 UCAS points (A levels, BTECs, or a mix) with no specific subjects required. How about Keel University? They're happy with "Distinction in any BTEC National Extended Certificate / Subsidiary Diploma and BC in two A Levels, or Merit in any BTEC National Extended Certificate / Subsidiary Diploma and AB in two A Levels". So again, Criminology will be fine.

Don't get me wrong - an A level in Biology will make this easier (as some of the better university will express a preference for it), and be more flexible if you change your mind later. But if you're not going to get a good grade in it, and you would in the Criminology BTEC, then do the Criminology BTEC.
Reply 4
Original post by DataVenia
OK, great. For university entrance you have two things to consider then: the entry requirements in terms of subjects, and the entry requirements in terms of qualifications.

For Psychology they'll either not care what the subjects are, or they'll specify that you should have Mathematics or a Science-related A level - and they always (as far as I've seen) include Psychology in the list of subjects they consider science subjects. So you're fine. Occasionally, you'll come across those which specify two science subjects, but you can just ignore those unis.

Before we move onto the BTEC, two things to consider:
1. You say that you "don’t see myself going into anything science related". Psychology is a science. :smile: At university there will be maths involved (for statistical analysis of research data). There will be biology involved (because the brain and our hormones have a significant impact on our behaviour).
2. If you want to be an Educational Psychologist you will need to take a postgraduate degree after your Psychology degree. That postgraduate degree will be a doctorate. (The job title "Educational Psychologist" is legally protected. You need to be registered with the Health & Care Professions Council to use it. They get to decide the qualification necessary for registration. To register as an Educational Psychologist you will need to take a Doctorate in Educational Psychology - DEdPsy.)

The BTEC in Criminology will generally make it harder to work out whether you meet the entry requirements or not. For example, at University of Bath (which I just picked at random) you need to scroll quite far down their Entry Requirements (here) before you come across a statement which says, "We accept Level 3 Diplomas and Extended Certificates alongside A levels or in combination with each other. You will need qualifications equal to at least three A levels to be considered." They then link you to a page which points our that you'd need two A levels plus a BTEC Extended Certificate. Bath is one of the unis which don't have any subject requirements, so Criminology would be fine.

Let's pick another university at random. University of Wolverhampton. They want 96 UCAS points (A levels, BTECs, or a mix) with no specific subjects required. How about Keel University? They're happy with "Distinction in any BTEC National Extended Certificate / Subsidiary Diploma and BC in two A Levels, or Merit in any BTEC National Extended Certificate / Subsidiary Diploma and AB in two A Levels". So again, Criminology will be fine.

Don't get me wrong - an A level in Biology will make this easier (as some of the better university will express a preference for it), and be more flexible if you change your mind later. But if you're not going to get a good grade in it, and you would in the Criminology BTEC, then do the Criminology BTEC.

Thank you so much!!! I was thinking of applying to like the university of Bradford, Manchester or Leeds but would they reject me a lot of people have said to me that the subjects I have chosen are not valued or particularly hard. Im honestly so confused i just don’t wanna be stressed for 2 years wen I could go to university with easier subjects but I don’t wanna end up being rejected.
Original post by Alishba93839
Thank you so much!!! I was thinking of applying to like the university of Bradford, Manchester or Leeds but would they reject me a lot of people have said to me that the subjects I have chosen are not valued or particularly hard. Im honestly so confused i just don’t wanna be stressed for 2 years wen I could go to university with easier subjects but I don’t wanna end up being rejected.

OK, well let's see what their web sites say:

University of Bradford (here) say, "Typical offer - 112 UCAS tariff points" and "there are no specific subject requirements." So your combination of qualifications and subjects is of no interest to them - as long as you get 112 UCAS tariff points. (An A level gets you 32 points for a grade C and 40 points for a grade B; a BTEC Extended Certificate gets you 32 points for a Merit and 40 points for a Distinction. So these are the sorts of grades you'd need - totaling at least 112 points).

University of Manchester (here) say, "We accept the BTEC National Extended Certificate at grade D* in lieu of the third A-level only. It must be offered alongside 2 A-level subjects, one of which to include: Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Psychology with minimum grades AA." So subject and qualification-wise, A levels in Psychology and Sociology, plus a BTEC Extended Certificate in Criminology, work. The fact that they want the BTEC to be a grade D* is a bit much. (If you were doing three A levels, they'd want AAA.)

University of Leeds (here) say, "We accept science-based BTECs at Distinction. Where a non-science BTEC is taken alongside A levels, your A levels must include a relevant science subject (see above)." In terms of A level subjects they say, "A-level: AAA to include one or more of: psychology, geography, mathematics, chemistry, biology, physics, geology, economics, statistics, environmental science or computing." So you meet their requirements subject-wise and qualification-wise.

Note, by the way, that for any university meeting the entry requirements does not guarantee you an offer. Universities are competitive and (contextual offers aside) will almost always make offers to the applicants with the best grades (assuming they meet the subject requirements, obviously). So the best thing you can do to avoid getting rejected by any or all of the above, is to get the best grades that you can.
Reply 6
Original post by DataVenia
OK, well let's see what their web sites say:

University of Bradford (here) say, "Typical offer - 112 UCAS tariff points" and "there are no specific subject requirements." So your combination of qualifications and subjects is of no interest to them - as long as you get 112 UCAS tariff points. (An A level gets you 32 points for a grade C and 40 points for a grade B; a BTEC Extended Certificate gets you 32 points for a Merit and 40 points for a Distinction. So these are the sorts of grades you'd need - totaling at least 112 points).

University of Manchester (here) say, "We accept the BTEC National Extended Certificate at grade D* in lieu of the third A-level only. It must be offered alongside 2 A-level subjects, one of which to include: Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Psychology with minimum grades AA." So subject and qualification-wise, A levels in Psychology and Sociology, plus a BTEC Extended Certificate in Criminology, work. The fact that they want the BTEC to be a grade D* is a bit much. (If you were doing three A levels, they'd want AAA.)

University of Leeds (here) say, "We accept science-based BTECs at Distinction. Where a non-science BTEC is taken alongside A levels, your A levels must include a relevant science subject (see above)." In terms of A level subjects they say, "A-level: AAA to include one or more of: psychology, geography, mathematics, chemistry, biology, physics, geology, economics, statistics, environmental science or computing." So you meet their requirements subject-wise and qualification-wise.

Note, by the way, that for any university meeting the entry requirements does not guarantee you an offer. Universities are competitive and (contextual offers aside) will almost always make offers to the applicants with the best grades (assuming they meet the subject requirements, obviously). So the best thing you can do to avoid getting rejected by any or all of the above, is to get the best grades that you can.

I’ve heard with a psychology degree you can also get into teaching im not super sure if I wanna pursues psychology yet or become a primary school teacher, a counseller or therapist. For a teaching degree would the qualifications needed be similiar? In your opinion do u think a primary school teacher or educational psychologist is better Ive heard many teachers go abroad to Dubai to teach which sounds super fun. Would my choices limit my flexibility for degrees a lot. Also thanks so much for all the help!!!💗💗💗
Reply 7
Original post by Alishba93839
I want to study psychology at university or go into teaching but I’m not sure if I should do a level biology or btec criminology do all universities accept criminology? I live in the uk in England im really not sure


It isnt a BTEC.

Its a daft WJEC Applied Diploma and for an academic subject like Psychology it isnt a great choice.
Its full of True Crime nonsense and lacks any real academic credibility.

It has no real relevance to Psychology at degree level because for that you require A levels with more of a science focus.
Do A level Biology instead - it will be far more useful.
Original post by Alishba93839
I’ve heard with a psychology degree you can also get into teaching im not super sure if I wanna pursues psychology yet or become a primary school teacher, a counseller or therapist. For a teaching degree would the qualifications needed be similiar? In your opinion do u think a primary school teacher or educational psychologist is better Ive heard many teachers go abroad to Dubai to teach which sounds super fun. Would my choices limit my flexibility for degrees a lot. Also thanks so much for all the help!!!💗💗💗

Is this a BTEC or the WJEC level 3 in criminology. If it is WJEC level 3 some universities dont accept it. Take an A level or a BTEC but be careful with the subject of the BTEC because some arent considered by some universities to be appropriate. If you want to take the criminology course contact the universities that you are interested to make sure they will accept it.
This is UCLs policy

You should offer at least two A Levels taken from the preferred A Level subjects list below. ... WJEC Applied Generals. The WJEC Level 3 Applied Diploma in Criminology is only accepted for entry to the BSc Crime and Security Science programme,
Original post by Alishba93839
I’ve heard with a psychology degree you can also get into teaching im not super sure if I wanna pursues psychology yet or become a primary school teacher, a counseller or therapist. For a teaching degree would the qualifications needed be similiar? In your opinion do u think a primary school teacher or educational psychologist is better Ive heard many teachers go abroad to Dubai to teach which sounds super fun. Would my choices limit my flexibility for degrees a lot. Also thanks so much for all the help!!!💗💗💗

I'm going to hold-off commenting further until you confirm what the Criminology qualification actually is. The title of this thread clearly suggests that it's a BTEC. However, both @McGinger and @swanseajack1 have pointed out that it might not be (and they're probably right - given that Criminology doesn't appear on Pearson's list of BTEC Nationals here). If that's the case, it renders every post I've made thus far potentially wrong.
Original post by DataVenia
I'm going to hold-off commenting further until you confirm what the Criminology qualification actually is. The title of this thread clearly suggests that it's a BTEC. However, both @McGinger and @swanseajack1 have pointed out that it might not be (and they're probably right - given that Criminology doesn't appear on Pearson's list of BTEC Nationals here). If that's the case, it renders every post I've made thus far potentially wrong.

This has been mentioned here previously. Students have been rejected with universities saying they only had 2 A levels as they werent accepting this qualification. It is also the case with another WJEC qualification. Here is Bristols policy on criminology level 3

We do not accept this qualification for entry to any other undergraduate courses. WJEC Level 3 Diploma / Applied Diploma in Criminology.
(edited 7 months ago)
Reply 12
Original post by DataVenia
OK, well let's see what their web sites say:

University of Bradford (here) say, "Typical offer - 112 UCAS tariff points" and "there are no specific subject requirements." So your combination of qualifications and subjects is of no interest to them - as long as you get 112 UCAS tariff points. (An A level gets you 32 points for a grade C and 40 points for a grade B; a BTEC Extended Certificate gets you 32 points for a Merit and 40 points for a Distinction. So these are the sorts of grades you'd need - totaling at least 112 points).

University of Manchester (here) say, "We accept the BTEC National Extended Certificate at grade D* in lieu of the third A-level only. It must be offered alongside 2 A-level subjects, one of which to include: Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Psychology with minimum grades AA." So subject and qualification-wise, A levels in Psychology and Sociology, plus a BTEC Extended Certificate in Criminology, work. The fact that they want the BTEC to be a grade D* is a bit much. (If you were doing three A levels, they'd want AAA.)

University of Leeds (here) say, "We accept science-based BTECs at Distinction. Where a non-science BTEC is taken alongside A levels, your A levels must include a relevant science subject (see above)." In terms of A level subjects they say, "A-level: AAA to include one or more of: psychology, geography, mathematics, chemistry, biology, physics, geology, economics, statistics, environmental science or computing." So you meet their requirements subject-wise and qualification-wise.

Note, by the way, that for any university meeting the entry requirements does not guarantee you an offer. Universities are competitive and (contextual offers aside) will almost always make offers to the applicants with the best grades (assuming they meet the subject requirements, obviously). So the best thing you can do to avoid getting rejected by any or all of the above, is to get the best grades that you can.

I’ve heard with a psychology degree you can also get into teaching im not super sure if I wanna pursue psychology yet or become a primary school teacher, a counseller or therapist. For a teaching degree would the qualifications needed be similiar? In your opinion do u think a primary school teacher or educational psychologist is better Ive heard many teachers go abroad to Dubai to teach which sounds super fun. Would my choices limit my flexibility for degrees a lot? Also thanks so much for all the help!!!💗💗💗
(edited 7 months ago)
Original post by Alishba93839
I’ve heard with a psychology degree you can also get into teaching im not super sure if I wanna pursue psychology yet or become a primary school teacher, a counseller or therapist. For a teaching degree would the qualifications needed be similiar? In your opinion do u think a primary school teacher or educational psychologist is better Ive heard many teachers go abroad to Dubai to teach which sounds super fun. Would my choices limit my flexibility for degrees a lot? Also thanks so much for all the help!!!💗💗💗

here is Durhams policy
WJEC Level 3 Applied Certificate/Diploma

We value the WJEC Level 3 Applied Certificate as a qualification which provides you with skills which are excellent preparation for university study and a successful higher education experience, but it does not form part of our offers.
Original post by Alishba93839
I want to study psychology at university or go into teaching but I’m not sure if I should do a level biology or btec criminology do all universities accept criminology? I live in the uk in England im really not sure


Sorry I know I’m late replying to this but I’m picking A-levels atm and I’m stuck between criminology and psychology but from reading your other comments it seems you aren’t sure about biology. If you think it would be hard don’t chose it. At the end of the day the grades matter more than the subject and it’s better to pick a subject you can get the top grades in than pick one you think you could do worse in as that drop in grade could cost you a uni place. Hope this helps :smile:
Reply 15
Original post by DataVenia
I'm going to hold-off commenting further until you confirm what the Criminology qualification actually is. The title of this thread clearly suggests that it's a BTEC. However, both @McGinger and @swanseajack1 have pointed out that it might not be (and they're probably right - given that Criminology doesn't appear on Pearson's list of BTEC Nationals here). If that's the case, it renders every post I've made thus far potentially wrong.

It is classed as a btec.
Reply 16
Original post by pinkpineapple13
Sorry I know I’m late replying to this but I’m picking A-levels atm and I’m stuck between criminology and psychology but from reading your other comments it seems you aren’t sure about biology. If you think it would be hard don’t chose it. At the end of the day the grades matter more than the subject and it’s better to pick a subject you can get the top grades in than pick one you think you could do worse in as that drop in grade could cost you a uni place. Hope this helps :smile:

thanks so much for this I really hope i don’t get rejected from universities because of my choices my teachers say I’m crossing off the top universities so it makes me upset but it’s something i enjoy i genuinely hope it pays off.
Reply 17
Original post by McGinger
It isnt a BTEC.

Its a daft WJEC Applied Diploma and for an academic subject like Psychology it isnt a great choice.
Its full of True Crime nonsense and lacks any real academic credibility.

It has no real relevance to Psychology at degree level because for that you require A levels with more of a science focus.
Do A level Biology instead - it will be far more useful.

im thinking of switching it for health and social care as i don’t think I’d be able to do a level biology i get stressed and anxious ver fast but my teachers say I’m wasting my potential since I got 8/9’s at GCSE
Original post by Alishba93839
thanks so much for this I really hope i don’t get rejected from universities because of my choices my teachers say I’m crossing off the top universities so it makes me upset but it’s something i enjoy i genuinely hope it pays off.


Original post by Alishba93839
im thinking of switching it for health and social care as i don’t think I’d be able to do a level biology i get stressed and anxious ver fast but my teachers say I’m wasting my potential since I got 8/9’s at GCSE

It depends what you intend doing after A levels and where you intend studying. Some top universities dont accept the criminology course and would class you as just having 2 A levels. Similarly some especially in London wont accept a BTEC in Health and Social. You would be restricted in the universities who will accept you.

To take a Psychology degree the entry requirements vary between university. You will require a science A level and sometimes 2. Psychology is classed as a science in most universities. You need to check the entry requirements for universities you are interested in and decide from there. You might well not need Biology but check before deciding.

This is from UCL

The WJEC Level 3 Applied Diploma in Criminology is only accepted for entry to the BSc Crime and Security Science programme, and the Engineering Foundation Year programmes. This qualification is not accepted for any other programme at UCL.

All other WJEC Applied Generals are not accepted for any UCL Undergraduate programme, except for the Engineering Foundation Year program.

Here is Manchesters policy on BTEC

BTEC National Extended Diploma

We require successful completion of a BTEC National Extended Diploma at grades DDD alongside grade A in one of the following A-levels: Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Psychology.
(edited 6 months ago)
Original post by Alishba93839
thanks so much for this I really hope i don’t get rejected from universities because of my choices my teachers say I’m crossing off the top universities so it makes me upset but it’s something i enjoy i genuinely hope it pays off.


Yeah don’t worry about it. And for everyone commenting that it isn’t a btec, you know what you’re saying. I’m considering doing it at college too and it is a btec (applied general). Every college does it different. At some it’s an a-level even. It’s like GCSEs all schools use different exam boards therefore the subject tends to be different. If you know what your exam board/qualification is then you know. Just because others use the WJEC or whatever doesn’t mean yours does :smile:

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