About BTEC Specialist and Professional qualifications

Find out more about our BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional qualifications, what and how students learn, how they are assessed, and their opportunities for progression.

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Learner profile

Our BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional qualifications are designed to give learners the knowledge, understanding and skills that they need to prepare for employment, as well as provide career development opportunities for those already in work.

Our BTEC Specialist suite offers courses for Entry Level to Level 3 learners preparing for or starting out in their careers, while our BTEC Professional qualifications are available to learners at Levels 4 to 7, including more mature learners who want to build on their work experience or progress in their careers.

Both suites of qualifications provide courses of study for full-time or part-time learners in schools, colleges, training centres, and through employers.

What you learn

Our BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional suites provide a long list of specialised, work-related qualifications in a wide range of sectors. Both engage learners to develop the relevant knowledge, understanding and skills to prepare for employment, with BTEC Professionals also focusing on techniques and attributes to improve professional practice and support career progression.

BTEC Specialist qualifications provide much of the underpinning knowledge and understanding for the National Occupational Standards for the sector. BTEC qualifications are developed with key industry representatives and Sector Skills Councils (SSC) to ensure that they meet employer and learner needs.

How you learn

BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional qualifications put learning into the context of the world of work, giving students the opportunity to apply their research, skills and knowledge in real-life contexts. This applied, practical approach means learners build the knowledge and skills they need for progression in the workplace or to further study.

How you are assessed

BTEC Specialist and Professional qualifications are made up of units which are internally assessed through assignments. These tasks and activities emphasise the practical application of the assessment criteria, allowing students to provide evidence in a variety of work-related formats - for example, presentations, performance observations, posters and projects. All internal assessments are quality assured through internal verification (in the centre) and external verification (by Pearson).

Progress with BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional qualifications

Developed in collaboration with industry professionals, BTEC Specialist and BTEC Professional qualifications are recognised by many organisations across a wide range of sectors. A number of BTEC Specialist qualifications are recognised as the knowledge components of Apprenticeship frameworks, and many industry and professional bodies offer BTEC Professional students exemptions for their own professional qualifications.

On successful completion, students can progress to - or within - employment, or continue with further study in a vocational area.