BTEC Introductory Certificate in Vocational Studies

Foundation Learning

Exam Board: Edexcel

1 year

Course Content:

BTEC Level 1 Introductory Certificate/Diploma in Vocational Studies is a one or two-year programme of study offering you the opportunity to investigate different vocational areas. The vocational areas that you can study may include: 

  • Tourism & Hospitality
  • Sport
  • Engineering
  • Health & Social Care
  • Caring for Children
  • Art & Design
  • Public Services
  • Performing Arts
  • Applied Science
  • Digital Media

Through studying a variety of vocational options it is hoped that you will widen your knowledge enabling you to make informed career choices for the future.

The vocational units are at the heart of the programme. However, you will also have the chance to improve your functional skills in Maths, English and ICT.

You will take part in our work experience programme one day a week. This has been a very successful area of the course and enables you to apply the knowledge gained on the placement to your vocational studies.


During the course you will be assessed through coursework in various ways including oral presentations, video films, audio tapes, written work and field trips.

Coursework will be graded at pass, merit and distinction.

Studying at Alton College:

In the classroom you will be taught using various different methods. You will work both in groups and individually. There will be some formal notetaking as well as role-play, group discussions and visiting speakers. There are in-built study support classes but there is also an expectation that you will study for up to 10 hours per week in your own time completing classwork, producing coursework or doing lesson preparation.

Entry requirements:

There are no formal entry requirements, although you will normally have followed a GCSE programme of study at school.

Course costs:

All students will be expected to provide their own folder, stationery, USB stick and calculators (where appropriate).

Any further costs are outlined below:

Compulsory: Work experience uniform - £15

Advisable: Field trips - approximately £60

The hospitality module requires a small financial contribution

If the costs of equipment, materials and trips may cause you financial hardship, you may wish to read through details of the financial support scheme on our website.

After completing this course:

Having successfully completed the BTEC Level 1 Introductory Certificate/Diploma in Vocational Studies you will be able to make further choices about which direction you wish to take. The Level 1 Introductory provides you with a sound foundation for employment but the majority of students decide to progress onto a BTEC Level 2 course. You will require a merit to progress onto a Level 2 course at Alton College.

Kirstie progressed onto a BTEC Level 2 in Information Technology. She gained a Merit on that course then completed a BTEC Level 3 ICT course.

Sadiq was so successful on his work experience placement at a local travel agent that he gained full time employment on leaving the course.