Focus on Health, Social Care & Early Years

Today’s BTECs are more focused, more aspirational and more relevant…….. BTECs are known to increase student engagement, enable students to progress, develop student life skills and add value and variety. Grantham College offer a BTEC Level 1 Diploma in Health & Social Care, BTEC Level 2 Diploma in Children’s Play, Learning & Development and Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Children’s Play, Learning & Development as well as a BTEC Level 2 Diploma in Health & Social Care, BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Health & Social Care and BTEC Level 3 Diploma/Extended Diploma in Health & Social Care.

A team of thirteen staff, with over 30 years of industry experience and 20 years of teaching experience between them, pass on their knowledge, experience and skills to students studying on the BTEC courses allowing them to link theory to real life examples. Other benefits to the students are that staff are able to give accurate and reflective practice to support students learning especially with regards to professional skills and development.

All staff in the department have worked in a variety of settings including the NHS, community care, private sector care homes, nurseries and Local Authority schools. They have taken job roles in general and mental health nursing, additional needs, Early Years Education, day nursery and playgroup managers. All staff are fully qualified teachers in addition to practising professionals allowing current and up to date information to be incorporated into teaching and learning.

Progression to Higher Education……

On successful completion of a Level 3 BTEC Health, Social Care & Early Years course at Grantham College you can progress on to Higher Education, of which you can do with Grantham College on either the Foundation Degree Children, Families & Community Health or HNC/HND Health & Social care courses. Previous BTEC Health, Social Care & early Years students have been highly successful in gaining university places going on to study degree courses in Primary Education, Social Work, Early Childhood Studies, Nursing and Occupational Therapy at the likes of The University of Northampton, Sheffield Hallam University, University of Derby, Leeds Metropolitan University and King’s College London.

Independent research on progression and career opportunities for young people in the UK demonstrates how BTECs open doors into Higher Education and beyond.

Figures based on research revealed in January 2011 from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) show that:

  • More than 100,000 BTEC students apply to Higher Education and make the university grade
  • In 2011, admissions to UK universities by BTEC students had risen 30% year on year
  • Ninety-five per cent of Higher Education Institutions accept BTEC students, including Russell Group universities
  • More than 50% of 20-30-year-olds going on to higher education are BTEC students
  • 20% of level 3 BTEC holders go on to undergraduate degree courses*
  • With a level 3 BTEC you can boost your lifetime’s earnings by up to £92,000.*

* Independent research carried out by London Economics in 2010.


The world of work…….

Former Health & Social Care students are now working for the college, with at least at least 2 qualified nurses working at local hospitals.

Former Early Years students have progressed from Higher Education and are now practising as Primary Ed teachers. Several students on a variety of Health, Social Care & Early Years courses have gained employment in the sector as a result of attending particular placements as part of their course. This has then enabled students to progress onto Foundation Degree courses at the college whilst working. These students have subsequently gone onto then manage rooms and day nurseries.


What areas of health and social care can I work in?

Health consists of both private and public sector organisations including:

  • dental practices
  • general medical and specialist medical practices
  • hospitals
  • medical nursing homes
  • other health related courses such as psychotherapy and physiotherapy.


Employment opportunities in the social care sector are grouped into:

  • residential nursing care;
  • residential nursing activities;
  • residential care facilities;
  • child day care
  • non-residential social care.

Who are the main graduate employers?

The largest employer in the health sector is the National Health Service (NHS) which employs more than 1.7 million people in the UK.

Unlike the health sector, social care roles are split across a number of different sized businesses. These include:

  • residential and non-residential care;
  • private/independent organisations;
  • public sector;
  • charity/voluntary organisations.


What’s it like working in the sector?

Graduates entering the health and social care sector can expect:

  • shift work with unsociable and often long working hours;
  • different working conditions within the same role and organisation. For example experiences of working in a hospital will differ between the outpatients department and the morgue;
  • a working environment that can be stressful and emotionally involved;
  • a relatively low level of self-employment;
  • to be able to work anywhere in the country as all communities require health and social care roles such as doctors and dentists.


What are the key issues in the health and social care sector?

The biggest issue that the health and social care sector faces is meeting an increased demand for services when budgets are being tightened.

Budget restrictions could mean that less health and social care jobs are created. Although this isn’t necessarily bad news, as graduates will be needed to replace those professionals that retire or leave.

There are a high number of applications for medical and dental degree programmes and fewer places available. The UKCAT (UK Clinical Aptitude Test) helps universities to make informed choices from the pool of highly-qualified applicants.

There are signs that recent graduates are finding it difficult to secure work immediately after graduation in some health and social care jobs. In 2010/11 fewer graduates found work six months after graduation as social workers, physiotherapists, medical radiographers and occupational therapists than graduates from 2009/10 (HECSU, What Do Graduates Do? 2012)

Graduate Jobs in Health & Social Care

What graduate job can I do?

These job profiles are examples of graduate careers in the health and social care sector:

  • Acupuncturist
  • Adult nurse
  • Chiropractor
  • Child psychotherapist
  • Counsellor
  • Dentist
  • General practice doctor
  • Homeopath
  • Midwife
  • Paramedic
  • Physiotherapist
  • Social worker
  • Youth worker.