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Software Developer (Advanced) - Level 3


The software developer qualification is designed for learners aged 16 years or over who prefer to study IT in a context that allows them to learn and be assessed in ways that are practical and relevant to the IT sector.

This qualification is not just about being able to use computers. Employers have stated that they need people who are able to help them develop their systems or the systems for their customers and, use IT as a tool. Therefore, this qualification is designed to give you a range of specialist knowledge and transferable skills in the context of applied IT, providing you with the opportunity to enter an apprenticeship, move directly into employment or progress to a related Higher Education (HE) course.

Learners could progress onto the Extended Diploma Application Data Technician course, an apprenticeship such as software developer or into employment in the IT sector in areas such as web developer.

Typical job roles within this pathway include: junior web application developer, junior application developer or junior software analyst.

You will take the designated mandatory units for this pathway, including application design, where you will explore application design and develop a prototype to meet a user requirement.

Further units will draw on the knowledge acquired from the mandatory units and will further enhance your knowledge, skills and understanding with respect to the development of specifications and the designing, building or testing of applications.

On successful completion of the course students will be awarded the Cambridge Technical Foundation Diploma in IT (Application Developer).

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Entry requirements

  • A minimum of five GCSEs with at least 4 points (grade C), including English, maths and science, IT or computing.
  • For those progressing from a Level 2 programme, a relevant Level 2 diploma with a 'merit' profile (including distinction in key units) and proven ability in English and maths. Ideally this will be GCSE English and maths with at least 4 points (grade C).

16-18 year old applicants:

You will need to supply a copy of your most up-to-date school/college report or a reference from a teacher/employer. Please upload this to your myVISION account by the end of May 2021.

19+ year old applicants:

You will need to supply a written reference either from a recent educational institution or employer. Please upload this to your myVISION account by the end of May 2021. If you are not able to gain a reference, please contact for further advice.

You will be given access to all the software and hardware that you will need to complete this course, however we do suggest that you purchase a box file and several plastic document wallets to help you store and present your work. A data stick, although not essential, is also recommended.

Start dates and fees

This course is available free of charge to anyone meeting the eligibility criteria for the Lifetime Skills Guarantee programme.

Start DateDurationCodeAnnual Fee (Age)Actions
16-18over 19
Sep 20211 yr(s)4916A1405FREEFREE* to £3345.00Apply

* If you are aged 19-23 and studying your first Level 3 course then that course may be free. Please contact us for more details. If you are aged 19 or over and either studying a second Level 3 course or qualifying Level 4, 5 or 6 course you may be able to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to cover the costs.

How long is the course?

2 years.


How will I be assessed?

This is a course that mixes theory with hands-on activities and will provide you with the building blocks to be successful in your chosen career. The course is assessed using a variety of written course work, videos, observations and presentations.

There are two external written exams which will take place in January.

What does the course lead to?

Typical job roles within this pathway include: junior web application developer, junior application developer or junior software analyst.

What will I study?

  • Application design
  • Web design and prototyping
  • Fundamentals of IT
  • Global information
  • Project management
  • Product development
  • Mobile technology
  • Internet of Everything

Study programmes

It is an entry requirement for some courses to have gained GCSEs A*-C in English and maths (see entry requirements). If the entry requirements to a course do not require A*-C in these subjects, and you haven’t already gained GCSEs A*-C in English and maths before joining us, you will continue to study English and maths as part of your programme and take appropriate qualifications in these subjects with the aim of achieving A* to C grade. In addition, to help you gain essential skills for employment, every student aged under 19 and studying a full-time course at college will take part in our study programmes alongside their main subject qualification. Find out more.

What can I go on to study?

This course is designed to aid progression onto the Extended Diploma (year two) Application Data Technician course, Level 4 apprenticeships or into employment.

How do I apply?

Apply online


Next steps

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0808 100 3626
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Why choose West Notts?

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100% A Level pass rate in 2020

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Best A Level provider in Mansfield and Ashfield for student progress*

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One of the top colleges in the UK for student satisfaction**

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An extensive bus service across Mansfield and the surrounding area

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£50m investment in our facilities since 2008

*Value added is a measure of a student’s progress against their starting point
**Learner Exit Survey 2017/18
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