The Extended Diploma is the equivalent of three A Levels. This course is for anyone who is interested in seeking employment within the public services such as: Armed forces, Royal Marines, Royal Navy, Air force, Army, Military Police, Emergency Services Fire Service, Police, Prison Service and Security


Meet our students Andrei Ilioiu

Andrei Ilioiu

“I enjoy this course; it challenges me and I’ve met a lot of people with the same aspirations.”

  • Description

    This is a practical, work-related course where students learn by completing projects and assignments that are based on realistic workplace situations, activities and demands.

    It introduces students to the diverse range of employment opportunities within the uniformed and non-uniformed public services and the requirements of those positions, while encouraging them to investigate roles that meet their interests, skills and abilities.

    The full two-year Level 3 Extended Diploma in Public Services is equivalent to three A levels. This means that once students have successfully completed the course they can choose whether to progress to a career or to higher education.

    To achieve this, students will cover a wide range of units, including but not restricted to:

    • Government
    • Policies & the Public Services
    • Team Development & Leadership
    • Citizenship & Diversity
    • Understanding Discipline
    • Public Service Fitness
    • Physical Preparation for Public Services
    • Expedition Skills Outdoor
    • Activities Police Powers War
    • Conflict & Terrorism
    • Criminology
    • Major Incidents
    • Crime & its Effects
    • Law & the Legal System

    Students will also complete a skills project, which will build their confidence and their employability skills as well as covering subjects such as equality and safeguarding which are designed to broaden their knowledge of these subjects and help with their employment potential.

  • Entry Requirements

    Students will need to have five GCSE passes at grade C or above, preferably including Maths and English. Alternatively, students will be accepted onto the course if they have an equivalent vocational qualification at a merit grade, and Functional Skills Maths and English, preferably at Level 2. All students must have achieved, or show the ability to achieve, Maths and English to GCSE grade C or equivalent. Where a student has not yet fulfilled this requirement, a functional skills qualification is a mandatory part of this course.

    Students will need to be prepared to participate in a range of practical activities, and to support their peers in group activity assessments.

  • Qualification

    NCFE Level 3 Extended Diploma for entry to the Uniformed Services (QCF)

  • Progression

    Successful students could consider employment via an apprenticeship or progressing on to the extended diploma which could lead to further progression in HND or Degree in Public Services, Public Administration, Criminology or employment.

  • Assessment

    Course work will be assessed by assignments, which include reports, projects, presentations, practical work and oral work. Students will be assessed by a combination of assignments, practical work, projects and tests set by the Course Team. Students will produce a portfolio of work, which will be assessed against the grading criteria for the units. Assignments set will have an agreed hand in date that will need to be met in order to meet the awarding body guidelines. Some units will also need you to complete externally set and marked assessment material in addition to your portfolio work.

  • Home Study

    Students are expected to spend additional study hours in the Learning Resource Centre Library in order to successfully complete this programme. You will also need to complete research and homework on a regular basis in order to build up your knowledge and confidence with public services. It is expected that you will need to spend approximately 6 hours a week on your course work outside of your normal class time.

  • Work Placement

    During the course students will be expected to complete some work experience. This helps students understand the types of roles available in industry and the skills required to gain employment in the sector.

  • Fees and Additional Costs

    If you are over 18 there may be registrations fees if you have not previously registered with the exam board. Students will be offered the opportunity to visit exhibitions and shows and these may require students to pay entrance fees and transportation costs. Students will also take part in outdoor activities such as kayaking and rock climbing as well as an expedition, these activities may incur additional costs, including the need to have sensible clothing and footwear to undertake these activities. Students may also benefit from purchasing textbooks the details of these books will be discussed during induction when the latest edition of books will be recommended.

Code Start Fees*
UPSL32Y 212301 September 2021 Fee Information

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* Terms and conditions apply. The fees stated on this website are for guidance purposes only and should be checked before enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, fees shown are for tuition only, over one term (Community Learning courses) or one academic year. Where a course is longer than one academic year, the fees stated are for the first year, and the cost of the second or subsequent years will be discussed at interview. For details of fee remission for students over 19 click here. If you think you may be entitled to a concession or fee remission, or you would like more information on the additional costs associated with your chosen course, please contact us on 01635 845000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fee information

14 - 18 year olds

In most cases students aged 14-18 years old on a substantial study programme will NOT be required to pay fees and most course-specific equipment and materials will be funded by the College. This excludes stationary, non-curriculum trips and a £15 enrichment fee.

19 years and over

Students aged 19 years and over may be required to pay fees. For details of fee remission and loans for students over the age of 19 click here. Please note that some courses may have additional registration, examination and/or materials fees. Where we have been unable to provide these additional costs in this information, they will be discussed with you prior to enrolment. If you think you may be entitled to financial support or fee remission, or you would like more information on the additional costs associated with your chosen course, please contact us.