Business and Finance Level 3 National Foundation/National Extended Diploma

Overview (NV)

Business and Finance Level 3 National Foundation/National Extended Diploma

Course length
2 years full-time


If you want to develop your core knowledge of business and the management of company finances, or you are looking to pursue a career in banking or financial services - which contributed £119 billion to the UK economy in 2017 - this course will give you the right foundation, as well as a pathway into further study at degree level.

Incorporating work placements and industry visits, the course will give you a strong grounding in general business management, after which you can specialise in a particular area such as marketing, human resources or accounting. You will be introduced to financial products and services, including principles and ethics, to give you an edge in your future career, as well as the knowledge and skills needed to manage your own finances.

This course is a BTEC National, which is widely recognised by industry and higher education as the signature vocational qualification at Level 3, giving students the right blend of technical and academic skills to become the highly skilled, work-ready individuals both employers and universities look for. 

In year one students enrol onto the National Foundation Diploma (equivalent to 1.5 A-levels). On successful completion of year one, students can progress onto the National Extended Diploma (equivalent 3 A-levels).  

Why should I choose this course?

  • You will gain knowledge in accounting and finance, which will provide excellent preparation for higher level study in those subject areas.
  • The course builds high-level skills such as teamwork, creative thinking and presentation skills – all of which are valued by employers.
  • The course is a work-related qualification and is designed with a clear purpose – to support progression to degree level study or employment.

Open days 

Our open days are designed to give you as much information as possible about UCB and the areas you are interested in studying. Come along and we may make you an offer on the day.

Why maths and English are so important to your career

Achieving a good level of English and maths is important so you can compete in today’s labour market and secure the career you have always wanted. Alongside your full-time course, you will continue to develop your English and maths skills. If you haven’t yet achieved GCSE grade 4 (grade C) in English and maths at 16, you will continue to study these subjects by resits or by taking Functional Skills at an appropriate level. We will support you all the way, so there is no need to worry.


Proficiency in mathematics is vital for success in the business industry, for both strategic planning and for the smooth, every day running of a company. For example, maths is important for:

  • Calculating production costs, including materials, machinery, labour, expenses and marketing
  • Working out the price of goods, so you can stay in profit
  • Running a payroll system, to ensure workers get paid correctly
  • Ordering goods and services
  • Working out your business accounts


As with maths, it is difficult to over-state the importance of good English skills. English is important in the world of business because: 

  • Good quality speaking and listening skills are needed when communicating with colleagues and customers
  • Customer service skills require good English skills in speaking and written communication
  • Accurate reading is vital for following instructions, reading documents and emails, and understanding the ideas, aspirations and demands of colleagues and competitors
  • English is important when preparing a CV and a business proposal, and for putting together advertising and marketing plans for your business
Teaching & Assessment (NV)

Teaching and assessment

You will be assessed through coursework assignments and projects, some of which will involve industry-related visits and external assessment. 

Our teaching and assessment is underpinned by our Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy 2015-2020.

Entry Requirements (NV)

Entry requirements

  • Normally, you will require a minimum of 4 GCSEs at grade 4 (grade C) or above, including maths and English
  • Or a BTEC Level 2 Diploma
  • Alternatively, at least 2 years’ relevant work experience
  • School applicants will be required to provide a good school report, which must include attendance.
  • You should be committed, enthusiastic and have a desire to succeed in the business and finance industry

If you do not have a grade 4 (grade C) or above in English and/or maths and you are under 19, you will be required to complete an assessment so we can ensure you receive appropriate support. 

After successfully completing the course, you will leave with a BTEC in Business.

What will I study? (NV)

What will I study?

Year 1

  • Recording Financial Transactions
  • Effective Management of Personal Debt
  • Personal and Business Finance
  • Exploring Business
  • Developing a Marketing Campaign
  • Managing an Event

Year 2

  • Cost and Management Accounting
  • Final Accounts for Public Limited Companies
  • Legal Principles and Professional Ethics in Financial Services
  • Principles of Management
  • Business Decision Making
  • International Business
  • Financial Statements for Specific Businesses

Your study programme

In addition to your full-time course, every student has an individual study programme which ensures that you develop the right skills and experience to progress onto either higher education or gain employment. What’s included in your individual study programme will vary depending on what you have already achieved and your career aspirations.

For example, if you haven’t yet achieved GCSE grade 4 (grade C) in English and maths at 16, you will continue to study these by resits or by taking Functional Skills at an appropriate level. Achieving a good level of English and maths is important so that you can compete in today’s labour market and secure the career you’ve always wanted.

Work placement

You will undertake a work placement each week in both the first year and second year of your course. To find out more about the work placement opportunities for this course, click on the ‘Work Placement’ tab above.

Work Placement (NV)

Work placement

A work placement not only gives you valuable experience, it also:

  • Helps you to apply what you’re learning into practice
  • It gives you a better understanding of how a company or organisation works
  • Helps you to develop essential skills such as time management, social and communication skills and the ability to work as part of a team
  • Enriches your CV
  • Enhances a UCAS application and personal statement should you wish to progress to higher education
  • Helps you to consider wider future employment opportunities

At UCB, we have a specialised team of Employability Tutors based in hired@UCB (located on the ground floor of Moss House), who will provide you with the necessary skills in order to source a work placement.

If students are passionate about their career choice, work placements are vital.

A set of achievements, skills, understanding and personal attributes make a student more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupation, which benefits themselves and the workforce.

Careers (NV)


The ever-changing nature of the business and finance sector means career opportunities are hugely varied and rewarding. The BTEC National Extended Diploma is a fantastic foundation for a variety of careers due to the focus on the development of practical skills.

You might be attracted by roles in:

  • Finance, including accountancy
  • General business management
  • Marketing and advertising
  • Enterprise (starting your own business)
  • The creative industries
  • Retail 

You may want to build on your knowledge and take a higher level foundation degree or degree in a related field such as Finance and AccountingBusiness Enterprise, Marketing Management or Digital Marketing, which could lead to higher paid jobs in the future.

Students go on to a diverse range of careers, including:

  • Accountant
  • Internal auditor
  • Business supervisor
  • Business manager
  • Business owner
  • Operations manager
  • Office administrator
  • Corporate investment banker
  • Financial adviser
  • Insurance broker
  • Human resources officer
  • Events manager
  • Lawyer


The team at hired@UCB – our student placement and careers service – can help you with advice, information and guidance in finding a job. It can help you develop your work-related skills.

Based in new facilities on the 7th floor of our Summer Row campus, the hired@UCB team comprises specialist staff to help with:

  • Careers advice and guidance
  • Placements, work experience and volunteering
  • Unitemps – UCB's recruitment agency
  • Employer engagement
  • Part-time and seasonal work
  • Internships, apprenticeships and traineeships
  • Alumni support

Find out more about hired@UCB services.