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Public Services Level 3 Extended Diploma

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Key information

Qualification type


Course code


Career Pathway

Public services


Level 3


2 years


Oxford City Centre,
Oxpens Rd,
Oxford, OX1 1SA

Start date

Sep 2021

New and returning learners:

Please note that due to special measures we have put in place to make our sites COVID safe, we are asking all learners to enrol with us online. If you are unable to do so we can support you over the phone, simply call 0800 612 6008. Please do not enter our college sites without a prior appointment as we are managing the number of people on site at any time to comply with social distancing measures.

See information about the measures we are taking to keep learners safe while on campus.

Study the purpose, role and responsibilities of our uniformed public services, both in the UK and internationally, on this extended diploma programme.

Are you looking to work in the British Army, Royal Navy, RAF, Royal Marines, police, prison or probation services, or fire and rescue services? We have industry specific programmes that enable you to progress directly into blue light and non-blue light employment, or advance to higher-level study at university.

We work in partnership with your potential future employers, including: Thames Valley Police, HM Prison Service, British Army, Royal Navy, RAF and the fire and rescue services. This gives you exposure to real-life training situations and allows you to forge relationships with key industry contacts.

What to expect on the programme:

  • expert training for the public services entrance tests
  • development of communication, self-discipline and team-working skills
  • opportunity to visit various public service settings such as prisons, police stations, crown courts, fire stations and RAF bases
  • participation in outdoor activities and the opportunity to do your Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award

What I'll learn

Topics covered include:

  • uniformed public service
  • employment team leadership
  • outdoor and adventurous activities
  • major incident management
  • crime and its effects on society
  • diversity and government policies
  • the public services


How I'll learn

Practical work and training play a large part in the course and residential periods provide opportunities to link theory with practice.

You will be required to attend some evening and weekend assessed activities as well as a period of voluntary work for the citizenship unit.

We also have visits from uniformed public services professionals so you can learn about their experiences first hand.

You will gain a good understanding of uniformed public services, roles and practices, and the qualities you need to join a service.

You will develop your communication, confidence, self-esteem and team-working skills. Leadership qualities and teamwork are a focus of the qualification.

You will have the opportunity to gain qualifications to progress to higher education and you will receive assistance in your preparation for employment.


How I'll be assessed

You are continually assessed over the two years.

Each unit is marked and assessed as coursework and some assignments may be integrated across the course units.

Mandatory residential trips provide opportunities to assess the practical application of outdoor activities, teamwork and leadership skills.


Entry Requirements

Five or more GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, including English and maths.


A BTEC Level 2 Diploma grade Merit or Distinction plus English and maths GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above/Functional Skills at level 2 in English and maths

If you are interested in a Level 3 programme and have alternative qualifications you would like us to consider, please contact us with your details.

Applicants will be invited to attend an interview and complete an assessment. All students will have their literacy and numeracy needs supported within the programme.

All students will be required to wear a uniform for all time-tabled sessions.


How to Apply

You can apply for this programme online. Click on APPLY NOW and follow the steps below:

  • Register for our online service and verify your account
  • Log in to our website and click APPLY NOW on your chosen programme’s page to complete your application

As part of your application, you will be asked to provide us with your contact details, how your chosen programme fits with your future plans and if you require any extra support (for example, because of a disability, medical condition, learning or language support needs).
Please include full details of your qualifications from your own country, as well as details of any English Language tests you have taken.

Printed application forms are also available.

Please contact our Careers team if you need advice and guidance to help you choose the right programme for you.