Level 2, Level 3


Course Level

Level 2, Level 3


1 year full-time per level


Opportunities available




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College of Food and Hospitality Management
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£130m invested in new facilities and student resources over five years

Opportunity to progress onto our bakery degree on completion of the Level 3 course

Do you love baking? Ever dreamed of a professional career as a baker, cake decorator or working in confectionery? Our Bakery college course will provide you with the foundation of knowledge and skills to start pursuing your ambitions in the industry.

Our Level 2 and Level 3 baking courses put the emphasis on hands-on training, providing you with essential practical skills in bread and confectionery. Working in our industry-standard kitchen facilities at University College Birmingham, you will gain a thorough background in working with a broad range of bakery products, as well as learning about chocolate work and other special interest areas such as celebration cakes or artisan bread.

To further boost your practical experience, you will undertake a work placement within the industry, with opportunities available in a range of settings from bakeries to food manufacturers or the hospitality sector. There are also opportunities for research into further specialist production, as well as putting yourself to the test in baking industry competitions and events.

Why choose this college course?

  • PRACTICAL APPLICATION – Our course is all about learning by doing, getting you straight into the kitchen to develop your practical baking skills
  • WORK PLACEMENT – Put your training into practice in the real world through the opportunity of a work placement within the industry
  • EXCELLENT FACILITIES – Our state-of-the-art bakery facilities on campus will help you hone your skills to an advanced level
  • MOVE UP TO UNIVERSITY – Want to continue your learning journey after college? Progress your training to the next level on our bakery degree or other university courses

Our facilities

University College Birmingham is renowned for its outstanding food industry training facilities. Studying on our baking college course means you will have access to our own on-site baking and product development laboratories featuring a wide range of specialist equipment.

Course breakdown

Topics you will study

  • Confectionery
  • Chocolate tempering
  • Modelling
  • Celebration cakes
  • Piping
  • Flower making
  • Food safety
  • High volume manufacture of bread and yeast-based products
  • Sugar craft
  • Chocolate work
  • Designing and developing bakery products
  • Planning and evaluating specialist bakery products
  • Monitoring quality
  • Working with others

You will also have an individual study programme to help you build the skills and experience you need to progress onto higher education or gain employment.

We are also happy to accept students who require additional support on the Professional Bakery Level 1 Diploma.

Maths and English

To help you secure your dream career, you will also continue developing your maths and English skills alongside your full-time course. If you haven’t achieved GCSE grade 4/C in English and maths at age 16, you will continue to study these through resits or taking Functional Skills at an appropriate level.

How maths will support your career

  • Making measurements (including weighing) in baking and serving food properly
  • Making adjustments for time and temperature in food preparation
  • Using fractions for recipes and serving sizes
  • Using geometry to enhance the presentation of baked products
  • Handling nutritional data to inform choices about health and balanced diet
  • Effective stock management in bakeries

How English will support your career

  • Using accurate spelling and specialist vocabulary for presenting quality menus
  • Developing good speaking and listening skills for communicating with colleagues and customers
  • Improving your reading accuracy when following instructions and recipes
  • Enhancing your CV or advertising your business with the correct use of English

Entry requirements

Level 2 Bakery

  • Ideally, you will require a minimum of 4 GCSEs at grade 3 (grade D) or above. However, our bakery lecturers are looking for students who are enthusiastic and keen to gain practical skills in bread, cake production and decoration, so please contact us if you have not achieved these grades.
  • School applicants will be required to provide a good school report, which must include attendance.

Level 3 Bakery

  • To apply for Level 3 bakery, you will need a relevant Level 2 qualification and ideally English and/or maths at grade 4 (grade C) or above.
  • Alternatively, you will require at least 2 years’ relevant work experience.

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

Key information

Teaching and assessment

On the Level 2 course, underpinning knowledge is continually assessed so you will complete practical assessments in the bakeries and a series of questions on the e-learning platform. A Level 2 Food Safety exam is also undertaken.

For Level 3, you will be required to complete both practical assessments within the bakery settings and written assignments on the e-learning platform. The course is continually assessed to ensure it provides more in-depth knowledge of the bakery industry, skills and ingredients.

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

Uniform and kit costs

This course requires a uniform and kit costing approximately £300, depending on the items you purchase. (Prices are subject to change each year – exact costs and information on how to order required items will be provided to you prior to enrolment.)

You may be eligible for the Learner Support Fund, which assists college students with course-related costs such as essential uniform, equipment and travel. For more information, please visit our Financial Support for College Students page.


of graduate employers say relevant experience is essential to getting a job with them

Work placements

Work placements offer a wealth of benefits alongside your studies, helping you put your learning into practice, develop your skills and understanding of the workplace, boost your CV for your chosen career or enhance your UCAS application for higher education. Our hired@UCB team can help find the ideal placement for you.

Students on our college bakery courses have opportunities for placements with artisan and craft bakeries, patisserie and cake decoration outlets, in-store bakeries and food manufacturers, as well as hotels, restaurants and conference and banqueting centres. placements last from 70 to 350 hours over the year, depending on the level you are studying at.

Work alongside experts in your sector

A snapshot of some of the employers we have worked with:

  • Hindleys Bakeries (Lichfield)
  • Lawrance's Bakery (Evesham)
  • Miss Macaroon (Birmingham)
  • Ten Four Bakehouse (Birmingham)
  • Valencia Fine Foods Ltd (West Bromwich)
My course included a two-week placement and I got to experience an industry setting. Many of my classmates stayed in restaurants and bakeries in Birmingham; however, some of us went to places closer to home. On placement, you learn things that you wouldn’t get the chance to learn in college.

Danniella Briggs Thomas Bakery Level 2

Career opportunities

The example roles and salaries below are intended as a guide only.

Artisan baker

Average Salary: £26,875

Cake decorator

Average Salary: £18,500

Quality control (QC) technician (bakery)

Average Salary: £20,470

Food business owner/restaurateur


Pastry chef

Average Salary: £21,682


Average Salary: £23,500

Aspiring to a higher level career? Complete this course and you could progress onto our Bakery and Patisserie Technology degree.


We are here to support your career goals every step of the way. 


Find out more

Jessica’s Story

Winning awards from top baking industry associations to making chocolates for the royal family, Jessica has always risen to the occasion.

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