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Computing (Level 3)

This study programme will provide you with the knowledge and experience required to start building a career in a range of IT jobs including programming, web design, technical support, and networking. You will acquire a range of IT related skills to equip you for progression to employment or Higher Education. This Level 3 Extended Diploma is equivalent to 3 A-Levels.


Although I considered sixth form after finishing school, I chose to come to College because I wanted to do something different and focus on one thing. My brother had studied the Level 2 and Level 3 here, and I had already studied IT in school. Everything is becoming IT based now in society so it made sense to choose this study programme.

I’m enjoying all of the practical work, particularly coding, which is fun. I’m not so keen on databases! I am good at maths though, so once I finish this programme, I want to study Accountancy here at the College for a year, or perhaps find a job or apprenticeship in the area.

I’ve completed 51 hours of work experience at The Re-Use Centre in Bedford where I helped with online sales. Whatever you choose to do, it’s your responsibility to be at College and so there is a greater sense of freedom compared to school. The tutors are really nice and helpful too.

Chloe - Computing Level 3

Entry requirements

To begin this study programme you will need... 

Duration: 2 Years

  • 4 GCSEs at grades 9-4 ideally including English and maths
  • Computing at Level 2

Course content

During this study programme you will complete units in both software development and networking – in the second year you will choose which of these areas to specialise in. A range of the following units will be available to study.

  • Subject units:

      Year 1

      • Principles of Computer Science
      • Fundamentals of Computer Systems
      • IT Systems Security and Encryption
      • Business Applications of Social Media
      • HCI
      • Website Development

      Year 2 

      • Planning and Management of Computing Projects
      • Software Design and Development Project
      • The Impact of Computing
      • Mobile Apps Development
      • Relational Database Development
      • Managing and Supporting Systems
      • Systems Methodology
  • English and maths:
    If you don't already have GCSE English and maths grade A*-C, we will work with you to help you develop your maths and English skills. 
  • Work experience
  • Personal development skills, study skills and employability skills 
  • Additional vocational learning and qualifications: 
    • During the programme there will be the opportunity to participate in trips. Over the past few years students have enjoyed trips to Thorpe Park, RAF Duxford and Worldskills in London.

Assessment methods

You will be assessed through coursework, assignments and tests. During the study programme you will be expected to work and develop assignments outside timetabled lessons.


Computing BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma 


  • English and maths qualifications if required

You can also gain up to 168 UCAS points.

Further study and career options

On successful completion you can progress on to our HNC/HND in Computing or a computing-related degree. You can also progress into careers in many IT-related disciplines at technician level or in a technical support role, and progress to professional status in your chosen field. Examples include systems analysis and design, software engineering, computing, computer networking, computer user support and helpdesk technician. This qualification attracts up to 360 UCAS points towards entry to a degree-level course.

Additional information

There will be an additional charge of £25 to cover the cost of trips.

Funding information

All full-time Level 1 and Level 2 courses are now FREE for everyone, whatever their age. If you are looking to study a Level 3 qualification, courses are still free if you’re under 19 or 19-23 and studying your first full Level 3 qualification. If you’re over 23 or studying a second Level 3 qualification, you will need to pay a fee. Find out more on our financial support page at

If you are aged 19 or over you may qualify for an Advanced Learner Loan to help you pay the tuition fees for this course. Find out more at You can also pay by instalments to help make the cost of this course more affordable.

Course Information & How to Apply

To apply online, select the 'Apply' button below. You will need to register an account and then you can follow the instructions on screen.

LengthStart DateFees per yearLocationCourse Code
2 years 13/09/2021 Launch our fee calculatorFree if 16-18yrs. Are you 19+?
Launch our fee calculator
Cauldwell Street BBF103

Apply Online

Part-time course already started?

Our upcoming 2021-22 part-time courses will be out in May. Get alerted when they're released by selecting your campus of choice below and filling out the relevant form:

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Additional Learning Support
If you have a specific learning difficulty or disability, are deaf or hearing impaired, our Additional Learning Support team are on hand to give you assistance whenever you need it.  Find out more.

Autism & Asperger’s Syndrome Support
At Bedford College, we are committed to developing the provision for students on the autistic spectrum, including Asperger’s Syndrome.  Find out more.

We have access arrangements in place to help students with disabilities or any other particular needs. Call us on 01234 291000 for more information.

Additional formats
Course information sheets are also available in large print and audio formats. Call us on
01234 291000 to order your copy.

Don't let money be a worry! Low-interest loans - study now, pay later

Advanced Learner Loans
If you’re aged 19 or over on the start date of your chosen course, you can apply for a loan to cover the tuition fees for some Level 3+ qualifications. There’s also nothing to pay back until you’ve completed your course and you’re earning over £25,000 per year!

» Visit the Advanced Learner Loans page for more information