Twenty first century ways of studying science which do not focus predominantly on academic ‘cramming’ are proving popular at Craven College.

The academic science BTEC level three extended diploma course features forensic and medical science and is the equivalent of three A-levels.

“Students study a broad range of units which gives them an insight into many areas, including chemistry, biology, psychology and maths,” says Jane Murphy, who is in charge of science, computing and Fresh Start.

“The course enables them to progress to university and in the past students have gone on to study subjects ranging from biochemical sciences to nursing and health care, as well as forensic science.”

Among the students relishing the course are 18-year-old David Walsh, Maddie Broadley, 19, and Emma Hutton, 18.

David, from Whalley, who is in the second year of his medical science option, said: “The course is more fun than I thought it would be and has opened a path to what I want to do at university.

“It’s a different type of challenge to A-levels. With A-levels it’s all about memory, but with BTEC it’s about time management, meeting deadlines and research.

“I already have offers from Nottingham and Royal Veterinary College, London, to study animal sciences, bio veterinary sciences or zoology.”

Fellow medical science student Maddie, from Wilsden, said: “I’ve always been interested in and preferred science to humanities.

“The BTEC means if I work hard it is possible to achieve good grades and get to university. I am enjoying the course and Craven College is a nice environment.

“I have accepted a place to study biomedical sciences at Hull University.”

Emma of Grindleton, also in her second year and studying forensic science, chose the course as it suited her learning style.

“I really love the course and find it interesting as well as challenging at times,” she said. “I’m hopefully going on to study nursing at York.”

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