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Extended diplomas are a great choice for students who want to specialise in one area and like to learn through assessed coursework with a more work-based, hands-on approach. Two-year Extended Diplomas give you a qualification equivalent to three A Levels.

Why Choose an extended diploma?

Vocational, two-year qualifications like the Extended Diploma are a great alternative for learners who prefer to specialise in a subject, trade or professional vocation. More than that, the Level 3 Extended Diploma is an excellent gateway to University level study or progression onto a higher level Apprenticeship and employment.

At Truro and Penwith College, there is a large range of Extended Diplomas to choose from, all taught by sector specialists in purpose-built and dedicated subject area buildings, teaching rooms and workspaces.

Click above to watch our film about studying Awards, Diplomas & Certificates at Truro and Penwith College and what to expect from your course.


75% of our Level 3 Extended Diploma students achieved Triple Merit or above.


Our students receiving Triple Distinction Star grades were 2% above the national average.


929 College students secured their chosen university place. Our university offer rate was a massive 15% above the national average.


240 College students received Russell Group acceptances. 15% above the national average for students securing Russell Group offers.

Berri Livermore Painting Penwith Portrait
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I’m not here because I have to be, I’m here because I want to be. When I was first shown around the department, I instantly knew it was for me. College has allowed me to discover my independence.

Berri - Diploma in Painting and Decorating

how do they work?

The 180 credit, 18-unit qualification most popular with our students is referred to as the Extended Diploma and is equivalent to three subjects at A Level. On an Extended Diploma you will complete a Level 3 Foundation Diploma in year one before progressing to gain the full Extended Diploma at the end of Year 2, unless otherwise stated.

where can they take me?

The Extended Diploma is an excellent route if you have decided on the broad area of employment you wish to pursue. The combination of a range of specialist modules with the depth of knowledge acquired enables you to progress successfully into Higher Education or into employment. You will also be required to undertake several hours of independent study. Assessment is through coursework, external written assessments and evaluation of practical skills

what do i need?

Four GCSEs at grade 4 to include either English Language or Literature and/or Maths. A Merit on a Level 2 Diploma in an appropriate subject can also be considered (plus English and/or Maths).

our stories

Daisy’s Story

Daisy’s passion for working in the medical field had transformed after studying Health and Social Care at Penwith College. Now Daisy is studying Paramedicine at the University of Plymouth.
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Oliver stands outside smiling at the camera.

Oliver’s Story – Access to Art & Design

Oliver started his adventure in the world of carpentry at Penwith College and has carved his way towards his dream career in furniture making.
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Milarna’s Story

Milarna’s fantastic triple D*D*D* in her BTEC Applied Science Diploma has led to her becoming the first BTEC student from the College to get into a highly competitive Dentistry course at Plymouth University.
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Millie’s Story

Millie took the opportunity to join the College's Allied Health Academy as an addition to her Level 3 Extended Diploma in Applied Biomedical Science, and found the career path she wanted to take through attending informative lectures.
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Visit us at an open event

Attending an Open Event is a great opportunity to explore the campus, see our specialist facilities and speak to our teaching staff.

“ (3)

The lecturers have been so helpful, especially towards the end of this year. If you’ve got assignments backed up they will make a plan for you to get back on track.

Gracie - Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport

Our colleges

Truro College
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