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A Level

Engineering Extended Certificate Level 3

Subject Area
Start Date
September 2024
Study Mode
2 years
Level 3

This course is the same size as one A Level (completing four units across two years) and therefore is equivalent to one of your A Level choices. You must study both years to achieve a qualification – you cannot drop this course at the end of the first year.

This course is ideal for young people thinking about a career in the engineering sector; whether an apprenticeship and/or university. Over the two years the course develops a very broad variety of engineering skills and knowledge, involving Engineering Maths, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering principles, 2D & 3D Computer Aided Design (CAD), Product Design, knowledge and applications of engineering materials and processes, as well as developing practical and team working skills to create a batch of engineered products safely. You will learn how to transform problematic designs into successful engineering products.

Entry requirements

A minimum of 4 subjects at grade 5 or above at GCSE plus English Language and Science at grade 4 or above. You should also have a grade 5 in Maths on the higher paper.

What will I study?

Year One

Engineering Principles
Modern life depends on engineers to develop, support and control the products and systems that are all around us. There is an increasing demand for ‘multi-skilled’ engineers who can apply principles from several engineering disciplines to develop solutions. This unit will develop your mathematical and scientific knowledge and understanding to enable you to solve maths and science problems set in an engineering context. You will explore and apply the algebraic and trigonometric mathematical methods required to solve engineering problems. The mechanical problems you will encounter cover static, dynamic, fluids and thermodynamic systems. The electrical and electronic problems you will encounter cover static and direct current (DC) electricity, DC circuit theory and networks, magnetism, and single-phase alternating current theory.

Computer Aided Design in Engineering
Computer-Aided Design (CAD) spans most areas of engineering, as well as aspects of other disciplines such as construction, manufacturing and media. Engineering is a multi-disciplinary subject that uses CAD as part of other processes to develop (design and manufacture), improve and maintain cutting edge products and systems. In this unit you will develop the skills to use CAD software and hardware to produce 2D and 3D drawings, using AutoCAD and SolidWorks (both industry standard). You will acquire the skills to produce models of products, editing and modifying these, and explore materials and their properties. You will produce a portfolio of 2D and 3D drawings which will be useful for interviews for university or apprenticeships.

Year Two

Delivery of Engineering Processes Safely as a Team
Thousands of engineering processes are used in the manufacturing of products and engineered components. To ensure that these engineering processes can be planned and carried out safely and effectively, engineers must be able to work together to get the job done. It is for this reason that so many engineering companies focus time and effort on understanding engineering processes and developing teamwork. In this unit, you will examine common engineering materials and processes, health and safety legislation and regulations, and how individual and team performance can be affected by ‘human factors’. You will also learn the principles of engineering drawing and develop two-dimensional (2D) computer-aided drawing skills. Finally, you will work as a team member and team leader to carry out a range of practical engineering processes to manufacture a batch of an engineered product. It is important that engineers understand how engineering processes are chosen and used safely, with minimal risk to the environment, and how important it is to be able to work effectively as a valuable member and leader of a team.

Engineering Product Design and Manufacture
Engineering products are part of our daily lives, from aircraft to the smallest electronic circuits found in medical devices. Products are designed as a result of the identification of a need or opportunity, and then engineers use creative skills and technical knowledge to devise and deliver a new design or improvements to an existing design.

In this unit, you will examine what triggers changes in the design of engineering products and the typical challenges that engineers face, such as designing out safety risks. You will learn how material properties and manufacturing processes impact on the design of an engineering product. You will carry out a controlled assessment where you will interpret an externally set brief regarding an engineered product, research this product, plan your approach to improving the product, produce initial concept ideas, develop a final design, communicate this in engineering drawings and justify/evaluate your proposed improved solution. It is important that as young engineers you learn to use creative and technical knowledge, understanding and skills to transform ideas into viable and environmentally sound, safe and effective products.

Additional costs

Please be aware that we would advise you to provide your own engineering drawing equipment. Steel toe capped footwear and overalls are available in a ‘sharing’ capacity for use in the workshop, but should you wish, you could provide your own.

Method of delivery

In this subject you will have three x 1.5 hour lessons each week spread across the week with your other subjects.

In Year One, two lessons are dedicated to the Engineering Science Unit and one lesson to the CAD unit. In Year Two, two lessons are dedicated to the Product Design Unit and one lesson to the Teamworking unit.

How will I be assessed?

Year One

Engineering Principles
This unit is assessed at the end of Year One with an externally set exam.

Computer-Aided Design in Engineering
This unit is assessed by assignments. You will produce a portfolio of 2D and 3D drawings which will be useful for interviews for university or apprenticeships.

Year Two

Delivery of Engineering Processes Safely as a Team
This unit is assessed by three assignments in the areas of CAD, Safe Engineering Processes & Human Factors, and a Manufacturing Team Activity.

Engineering Product Design and Manufacture
This unit is assessed by an externally set and controlled assessment where you will interpret an externally set brief to redesign a given a product.

Good course combinations

Recommended to be combined with A Level Mathematics and/or Physics, which allows you to progress to higher education to study engineering or other STEM-related programmes.

Your next steps

Progression from this qualification could lead to:

  • A larger size qualification at Level 3 (e.g. BTEC Extended Diploma in Advanced Manufacturing)
  • If completed alongside A Levels to higher education, HND/BEng (Hons) degrees in Engineering and other related degrees
  • An advanced or higher engineering apprenticeship, or work in the engineering sector

Note: You should always check the entry requirements for degree programmes in engineering as many universities will require A Level Maths and/or Physics.

Isaac Engineering Extended Certificate student

“I took Engineering as a subject to gain both theoretical and practical knowledge to use in the future for my career. Also I can use this knowledge in my day to day life. It helps me to take a qualification with coursework to play to my strengths.”

Engineering Extended Certificate Level 3
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