This is a two year vocational course (equivalent to two A Levels).  It is an exciting subject for students who are interested in working with people in a wide variety of settings. Students have the opportunity to study the subject in-depth and the content is varied and interesting.

The Diploma course is ideally suited to anyone who is contemplating a career in the industry. Students will study in a positive, creative and friendly environment where they will be motivated and feel confident to express empathy, and demonstrate an understanding of people with a diverse range of  needs.

Health & Social Care goes well with many subjects, particularly:

  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • PE/Sport
  • English
  • Biology

Health & Social Care students may decide to take up a place at university studying one of a number of subject-related degrees. Popular courses include Nursing, Midwifery, Speech and Language Therapy, Radiography, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy and Teaching.

A qualification in Health & Social Care will help provide essential knowledge of the industry and help prepare students for Higher Education or the world of work.

This course covers a variety of topics such as:

  • Human Lifespan Development (assessed via written exam)
  • Working in Health & Social Care (assessed via written exam)
  • Enquiries into Current Research in Health & Social Care (set and marked externally)
  • Meeting Individual Core & Support Needs (set and marked internally)
  • Principles of Safe Practice in Health & Social Care (set and marked internally)
  • Promoting Public Health (set and marked internally)

In addition students study two optional units.

The learning experience is enhanced through work experience (up to 100 hours), attending talks from visiting professionals, visiting exhibitions, conferences and health fairs. Teaching methods vary from discussion, independent research projects to multi-media applications. 

Course Specific Trips, Visits & Experiences

BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Health & Social Care students have the opportunity to take part in a variety of course related experiences. In recent years these have included:

  • A visit to Canine Partners charity in Heyshott
  • A visit to St. Piers School (for autism and epilepsy) in Lingfield
  • A Health Fair run by Reigate College’s Health & Social Care students. The students actively take part in the Health Fair along with visiting professionals
  • A visit to Gunther von Hagen’s ‘Body Worlds’ exhibition which supported the students’ studies of Anatomy and Physiology
  • The ‘Safe Drive Stay Alive’ presentation at the Dorking Halls, that included a talk by Surrey Fire and Rescue Service on ‘Safer Driving’
  • Hands-on experience in baby care where students were given the opportunity to take home a ‘Ready or Not Tot’, an interactive baby manikin

In addition to course specific experiences, students also have the opportunity to get involved in the College’s Activities Programme.

All students need to gain an experience of the work place during their time at College and for students studying vocational courses it should ideally be linked to one of their subject areas.

The course is assessed by internally and externally assessed coursework and external examinations (see Course Content for details).

The exam board for this BTEC Diploma is Pearson BTEC.

All students need to have at least five GCSEs at  Grade 4 or above (and a satisfactory school reference) in order to be accepted on an A Level/BTEC Level 3 Programme.  In addition, students will need the following minimum combination of GCSE grades: 

  • Grade 4 in a numerate subject such as Maths or Science, and
  • Grade 4 in a literate subject such as English Language, English Literature or History

A Merit or above in BTEC Level 2 Health & Social Care will also be considered. Students on this course should be: 

  • Interested in the care industry
  • Able to carry out independent research
  • Able to meet coursework deadlines

Students should enjoy working with others, have good verbal and written communication skills and be computer literate. The ability to plan and organise their own learning is also important.

What courses do you offer in Health & Social Care?

We offer two Level 3 qualifications; both are BTEC and both courses involve two years of study:

  1. BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate which is equivalent to one A Level and would be one of your three choices.
  2. BTEC Level 3 Diploma which is equivalent to two A Levels and would be two of your three choices.

What is Health & Social Care about?

Health and social care is the treatment of ill health and medical conditions in hospitals, health centres and in the community. Social care is the care and support of vulnerable people, usually in the community. Our topics are varied and cover all life stages, from conception and birth, right through to adulthood and later life.  We also explore health and nutrition, safe working practice, health promotion, promoting public health and current research within health & social care.

How is the course taught?

Our aim is to foster an interest in caring skills and encourage a holistic approach; we do this by developing your presentation and communication skills and helping you to become a critical thinker. We actively encourage you to research and explore a range of different viewpoints on key issues and we discuss and debate these in class.

The course will support you to become a confident, independent and reflective thinker equipped with the skills to meet the challenges faced when working within the health and social care sector and the ever-changing world that we live in.

Who is this course for?

This course is suitable for students who are interested in working with people in a health or social care role. This includes a wide range of fulfilling careers such as; primary teaching, nursing, social work, midwifery, radiography, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, paramedic science and childcare.

Is there a work placement?

Currently there is no work experience included in the course, but the College encourages all students to do a work placement where possible. We inspire students to undertake paid work as well as gaining voluntary experience. Some students gain valuable experience of patient care through employment as Ward Assistants at East Surrey Hospital, or as Care Assistants in residential homes.

How would I progress into my chosen career?

Many career routes now offer excellent apprenticeship schemes with benefits such as a paid degree course, a salary and the offer of full-time employment once qualified. There are also many university degree courses available.

To explore university course options visit:

Which universities have students chosen in the past?

In 2020, Health & Social Care students secured places on the following university courses:

  • Childhood & Youth – University of Sussex
  • Children, Young People & Education – University of Greenwich
  • Diagnostic Radiography – St George’s University of London
  • Health & Social Care – University of Winchester
  • Midwifery – University of Northumbria, University of Surrey
  • Nursing – Bournemouth University, King’s College University of London, University of Manchester, University of Southampton
  • Occupational Therapy – St George’s University of London
  • Paramedic Science – Liverpool John Moores University
  • Primary Education – University of Winchester
  • Social Work – Solent University, Southampton

What are the units of study and how are they assessed?

The Diploma has eight units of study over two years.

  • Human Lifespan Development – externally-assessed exam lasting 1 hour 30 mins
  • Supporting individuals with Additional Needs – two assignments internally set and marked
  • Working in Health & Social Care – externally-assessed exam lasting 1 hour 30 mins
  • Meeting Individual Care and Support Needs – two assignments internally set and marked
  • Promoting Public Health – two assignments internally set and marked
  • Principles of Safe Practice in Health & Social Care – two assignments internally set and marked
  • Nutrition for Health & Social Care – two assignments internally set and marked
  • Enquiries into Current Research in Health & Social Care – Synoptic External Assessment

How to Apply

Applications for entry September 2022

Please apply (from 28 September 2021) via the link on this page:

Please see the Admissions timetable for information about the College’s enrolment process.

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