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Applied Science BTEC National Diploma and Extended Diploma

The Curriculum Purpose  

The high-quality provision of the BTEC Science course aims to inspire learners to progress to higher education or to an apprenticeship/employment in the Applied Science sector.  Specialist teaching leads to learners developing applied learning in all three sciences that bring together knowledge and understanding with practical and technical skills. This is achieved through learners performing vocational tasks that encourage the development of appropriate vocational behaviours and transferable skills such as communication, teamwork, research and analysis, which are valued in both higher education and the workplace.   

Key concepts that underpin the subject area  

BTEC National Extended Diploma  Applied Science  

Learners will have studied seven mandatory units:  

Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science I - Learners will develop a good understanding of core science concepts. A strong grasp of these concepts will enable learners to use and apply this knowledge and understanding in vocational contexts when studying other units within this specification. The topic areas covered include animal and plant cells; tissues; atomic structure and bonding; chemical and physical properties of substances related to their uses; waves and their application in communications. 

Unit 2: Practical Scientific Procedures and Techniques – Leaners will develop the skills to successfully carry out standard laboratory equipment and techniques, including titration, colorimetry, calorimetry, chromatography, calibration procedures and laboratory safety. Through the practical tasks in the unit, learners will develope proficiency in the quantitative analytical techniques of titration and colorimetry, including learning to calculate the concentration of solutions.  

Unit 3: Science Investigation Skills – Learners will develop the essential skills underpinning practical scientific investigations. As well as drawing on Unit 1 and Unit 2, these skills will be delivered through subject themes ranging from enzymes and diffusion to electrical circuits. The subject themes provide different contexts for the development of investigative skills.  

Unit 4: Laboratory Techniques and their Application – Learners will investigate a scientific organisation to gain an understanding of how it operates. They will investigate health and safety practices in the organisation’s laboratories and consider related primary and secondary legislation. Leaners will also have the opportunity to compare the approach taken to hazards and risk management in different parts of the organisation, for example production, the warehouse, the office.  

Unit 5: Principles and Applications of Science II - This unit builds on and extends the range of key science concepts that you covered in Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science I. A strong grasp of these concepts will enable learners to use and apply this knowledge and understanding in vocational contexts when studying other units in this specification. This unit includes properties, uses and production of some inorganic compounds; structures, reactions and properties of commercially important organic compounds; enthalpy changes; the cardiovascular system; ventilation and gas exchange in the lungs; urinary system structure and function; cell transport mechanisms; thermal physics; physical properties of materials; and fluids in motion. 

Unit 6: Investigative Project – Learners will choose one topic area that interests them and this will form the basis of their investigative project. They will carry out a scientific literature search and review, considering the project’s aims and objectives, then produce a realistic plan and carry out the project safely using your scientific investigation skills, project management skills and what they have learnt from the other units. Finally, the learners will prepare an evaluative report that will consider the project outcomes and suggest amendments that may have improved those outcomes.  

Unit 7: Contemporary Issues in Science - Learners will explore contemporary science issues and their impact on the world we live in, developing their skills of analysis and interpretation. Learners will consider a range of contemporary science issues from advances in medical treatments, including stem cell therapy and genetic engineering, to developments in nanotechnology and food technology. They will look at the environmental, ethical, moral, social, political and/or financial impact of these developments, including their potential benefits, disadvantages and risks. Learners will develop their research and critical thinking skills by learning how to assess the reliability of sources of published scientific information and the presentation of science reporting and its relationship with the reporting medium and target audience. They will also gain an understanding of the influence of organisations and individuals on contemporary science issues and will put forward reasoned arguments about these issues. Learners will evaluate and interpret qualitative and quantitative evidence and justify their own judgements.  

Learners will also be given the opportunity to explore, through the study of 6 optional units, a specialist area of science e.g physiology of the human body, that supports progression to applied science courses in higher education, and link with occupational areas in biomedical science.  

 

BTEC National Diploma Applied Science (+ A level Subject of Choice)  

Learners will have studied six mandatory units:  

Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science I - Learners will develop a good understanding of core science concepts. A strong grasp of these concepts will enable learners to use and apply this knowledge and understanding in vocational contexts when studying other units within this specification. The topic areas covered include animal and plant cells; tissues; atomic structure and bonding; chemical and physical properties of substances related to their uses; waves and their application in communications. 

Unit 2: Practical Scientific Procedures and Techniques – Leaners will develop the skills to successfully carry out standard laboratory equipment and techniques, including titration, colorimetry, calorimetry, chromatography, calibration procedures and laboratory safety. Through the practical tasks in the unit, learners will develop proficiency in the quantitative analytical techniques of titration and colorimetry, including learning to calculate the concentration of solutions.  

Unit 3: Science Investigation Skills – Learners will develop the essential skills underpinning practical scientific investigations. As well as drawing on Unit 1 and Unit 2, these skills will be delivered through subject themes ranging from enzymes and diffusion to electrical circuits. The subject themes provide different contexts for the development of investigative skills.  

Unit 4: Laboratory Techniques and their Application – Learners will investigate a scientific organisation to gain an understanding of how it operates. They will investigate health and safety practices in the organisation’s laboratories and consider related primary and secondary legislation. Leaners will also have the opportunity to compare the approach taken to hazards and risk management in different parts of the organisation, for example production, the warehouse, the office.  

Unit 5: Principles and Applications of Science II - This unit builds on and extends the range of key science concepts that you covered in Unit 1: Principles and Applications of Science I. A strong grasp of these concepts will enable learners to use and apply this knowledge and understanding in vocational contexts when studying other units in this specification. This unit includes properties, uses and production of some inorganic compounds; structures, reactions and properties of commercially important organic compounds; enthalpy changes; the cardiovascular system; ventilation and gas exchange in the lungs; urinary system structure and function; cell transport mechanisms; thermal physics; physical properties of materials; and fluids in motion. 

Unit 6: Investigative Project – Learners will choose one topic area that interests them, and this will form the basis of their investigative project. They will carry out a scientific literature search and review, considering the project’s aims and objectives, then produce a realistic plan and carry out the project safely using your scientific investigation skills, project management skills and what they have learnt from the other units. Finally, the learners will prepare an evaluative report that will consider the project outcomes and suggest amendments that may have improved those outcomes.  

Learners will also be given the opportunity to explore, through the four optional units, a specialist area of science e.g. physiology of the human body, that supports progression to applied science courses in higher education, and link with occupational areas in applied science.  

 

By the end of both course learners will have completed exams and assignments in a wide range of scientific areas that deepens their knowledge in all three sciences and develops their organisation, research and report writing skills. 

  

Key Features of Learning 

Learners will be taught by subject specialists in well-equipped laboratories appropriate for each of the units. The teaching approach provides rigour and balance and promotes the ability to apply learning immediately in new contexts whilst ensuring that all learners are supported and stretched to reach their full potential and develop their confidence to progress to a fulfilling and rewarding career.  

What will you see in BTEC Applied Science lessons? 

Excellent teaching and Learning 

Engagement and participation by all 

Opportunities for students to articulate their ideas verbally and improve their oracy 

Adaptive teaching 

Deep thinking about the scientific concepts covered 

Wide range of teaching tools, with a strong emphasis on investigation through practical work 

Think, pair, share 

Extended writing 

Exam practise 

Opportunities for independent work & self-reflection 

Reference to careers when relevant 

 

What you will see in BTEC Applied Science student notes? 

Students keep their own folders and a laboratory book for practical work. These contain the key information required to complete their assignments and external exams.  

 

What formative assessment will you see in BTEC Applied Science? 

Retrieval practice at the start of lessons linked to recent or less recent work 

Cold calling and interrogative questioning 

Past exam questions 

Assignments  

Mock exams in exam-based units  

 

What extra-curricular is available from the BTEC Applied Science? 

Learners supporting science club for KS3 and KS4  

Supporting the BTEC Applied Science team at open evenings for year 7 and KS4 

Supporting BTEC Applied science team at talks for internal KS4 students  

University trips and talks  

Take part in the chemistry analyst competition 

Intervention  

Documents

Page Downloads Date  
BTEC Applied Science Long Term Curriculum Plan 05th Jul 2022 Download