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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


Kings Road,
Reading, RG1 4HJ

Start date

Sep 2021

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

The course is designed to give you a varied learning experience and provides a balance between discussion, theory sessions and more practical activities such as personal fitness, sport and outdoor activities.

You will study a wide variety of units focusing on:

  • citizenship
  • command and control
  • criminology
  • diversity
  • emergency service incidents
  • employment in the public services
  • Government and the public services
  • human behaviour
  • international perspectives
  • law
  • land-based and water-based skills
  • team development
  • team leadership
  • understanding discipline
  • physical preparation and fitness
  • outdoor and adventurous expeditions

You can also study other qualifications as part of this course which will enhance your CV.

Evidence can be gained towards Duke of Edinburgh Award.

Visits to public service organisations, which may include residential visits, form an important part of the course along with talks from guest speakers; these can contribute to work experience hours.



How I'll learn

You will learn how to become a more independent learner as the course will develop your analytical and critical thinking skills as well as team working and leadership skills.

You will further develop your English, maths and ICT skills to help complete your course work and prepare for further study or employment.

Initially, you will study for the Subsidiary Diploma. Successful students will be invited to study for the Extended Diploma, which they will complete in year two of the course.

You benefit from computer workshop facilities, and there are also open access computer resources in the library.


How I'll be assessed

Assessment is carried out using a variety of methods including:

  • individual work projects
  • group work
  • presentations
  • research
  • case studies
  • input from guest speakers.

All eighteen units are assessed by coursework.

The course also features residential trips and offsite practical activities.


Entry Requirements

You will need five GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, including English Language and maths.


a First Diploma at Merit and above with Functional Skills at Level 2.

If you do not have a grade 4 (C) in GCSE maths or English then you will be required to be working towards achieving these alongside your course.


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.