Applied Science

BTEC applied science allows students to take the study of general science beyond GCSE. The subject integrates skills required for employment in the scientific sector, such as analytical skills, report writing and practical techniques, alongside developing communication skills, self-evaluation and teamwork.

The requirements of the qualification will mean that learners develop the transferable and higher order skills which are valued by higher education providers and employers. For example, when studying Unit 3: Science Investigation Skills, students will develop skills by planning investigations, collecting, analysing and presenting data and communicating results. The qualification also carries UCAS points and therefore, alongside other qualifications, can be used for entry to higher education.

Why study applied science?

Applied science is of particular value to those students hoping to pursue careers in nursing and the health professions, science and technology, forestry and teaching.


BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Applied Science

Awarding body


Entry requirements

GCSE at grade 5 or above in both maths and English. Grade 5 or above in biology, chemistry and physics triple award or grade 5 or above in science dual award.

Year 12

Unit 1 – Fundamental principles and applications of science.

Chemistry includes atomic structure, bonding, periodicity and quantitative chemistry.

Biology covers cellular structure, tissue structure and function. Physics covers waves, wave features and applications of waves.

Unit 2 – Practical Scientific Procedures and Techniques.

Assignment work includes: measuring and recording a cooling curve to show change of state; chromatography to identify plant pigments; titration and colourimetry to determine concentration of a solution.

Year 13

Unit 3 – Science Investigation Skills. Covers the stages and skills required to plan a scientific investigation. Content includes investigating enzymes, diffusion, plants and their environment, energy content of fuels and electrical circuits.

Unit 8 – Physiology of Human Body Systems. Covers the physiology of the digestive system, musculoskeletal system and lymphatic system.


Unit 1 is an external assessment taken at the end of Year 12. Unit 2 is internally assessed assignment work, completed in Year 12.

Unit 3 is an external assessment consisting of a set practical task and a written paper, usually taken at the end of Year 13. Unit 8 is an internally assessed unit, completed in Year 13.