Are designed to be offered in sixth forms and sixth form centres alongside A-levels to provide a vocational option that can lead towards higher education.

There are changes to A-levels taking place between 2016 and 2018 which are part of a reform of all qualifications. Applied A-levels will cease to be taught and applied generals will replace them.

Applied generals are available in 66 broad subjects including media and communication, performing arts, health and social care, construction, child development and wellbeing, etc. They are recognised by at least three higher education institutions as fulfilling the entry requirements to a range of higher education courses, either in their own right or alongside other Level 3 qualifications.

Applied generals are graded distinction*, distinction, merit, and pass for most qualifications. They are available in different sizes which are dependent on the guided learning hours (GLH). They have a general equivalence to A-levels in that a single A-level is taught across 360 guided learning hours and each type of applied general has a GLH in hours. For example:

  • BTEC Level 3 Certificate /Technical certificate = 160-180 GLH or (approx. ½ A-level)
  • BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma = 360 GLH (approx. 1 A-level)
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma = 540- 720 (between 1-2 A-levels)
  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma = 1080 GLH (equivalent to 3 A-levels)

Applied general qualifications do not count towards the new TechBacc (Technical Baccalaureate) measure as they do not equip a student with specialist knowledge and skills for a specific job role.

Find out more on the gov.uk website.

To find out about other qualifications return to the Qualifications page.

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