CTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate in Engineering


This Level 3 course is a two year course designed for those students who have an interest in Engineering, having studied Engineering or a related subject at Level 2 and wish to progress in the future to higher level of study.The Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC) in Engineering is 360 GLH and is the equivalent of one A level.


Good interpersonal skills and a keen interest in Engineering are essential. The majority of the course is assessed through a series of coursework units (6 x 60 GLH for each) with at least four externally examined units and a choice of two further units, either examined or centre-assessed and externally moderated. Whilst elements of the course have practical content, the ability to write coherently and undertake research will be equally important. Students should also be able to demonstrate a sound understanding of Maths.


Upon completion of the course, students could progress to further their studies at university level, or apply for apprenticeships within the field.


The minimum entry requirements for level 3 applied study apply. In addition, students must have at least Grade 6 in Maths. They should also be able to demonstrate a keen aptitude for Maths and Physics. It would be advantageous for students to have studied Design and Technology; however, students who have not may consult subject teachers to determine their suitability.


Unit 1 - Mathematics for engineering

This unit will develop learners’ knowledge and understanding of the mathematical techniques commonly used to solve a range of engineering problems. By completing this unit learners will develop an understanding of:

  • Algebra relevant to engineering problems
  • The use of geometry and graphs in the context of engineering problems
  • Exponentials and logarithms related to engineering problems
  • The use of trigonometry in the context of engineering problems
  • Calculus relevant to engineering problems
  • How statistics and probability are applied in the context of engineering problems

Unit 2 - Science for engineering

This unit will develop the learner’s knowledge and understanding of principles of engineering science and consider how these can be applied to a range of engineering situations. By completing this unit learners will:

  • understand applications of SI units and measurement
  • understand fundamental scientific principles of mechanical engineering
  • understand fundamental scientific principles of electrical and electronic engineering
  • understand properties of materials
  • know the basic principles of fluid mechanics
  • know the basic principles of thermal physics

Unit 3 - Principles of mechanical engineering

By completing this unit learners will develop an understanding of:

  • systems of forces and types of loading on mechanical components
  • the fundamental geometric properties relevant to mechanical engineering
  • levers, pulleys and gearing
  • the properties of beams
  • the principles of dynamic systems

Unit 4 - Principles of electrical and electronic engineering

By completing this unit learners will develop an understanding of:

  • fundamental electrical principles
  • alternating voltage and current
  • electric motors and generators
  • power supplies and power system protection
  • analogue electronics
  • digital electronics

Unit 5 – Electrical and electronic design

The aim of this unit is for learners to develop the ability to be able to apply knowledge of AC and DC circuit theory to circuit design, and to apply a systems
approach to electrical design, developing knowledge of the component devices needed to be able to do this. Learners will develop an understanding of the
applications of electromagnetism in electrical design, and the ability to be able to use both semi-conductors and programmable process devices in their designs.

Unit 9 – Mechanical design

The aim of this unit is for learners to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to be successful in their design of mechanical engineering components
and products. Learners will develop knowledge and understanding of engineering drawings, both freehand graphical techniques, and more formal drawing techniques. They will also be able to select the appropriate engineering materials to achieve their design solutions. Learners will be able to produce a
design that can be manufactured, successfully, and learn how to optimise a design to improve performance

Units 1-4 are mandatory units, while unit 5 & 9 are the chosen optional units. The mandatory units make up 66.6% of the qualification and consist of 90 minute examinations for each unit, while the unit 5 & 9 will complete the course and be internal assessed, with external moderation.

The units are graded Pass, Merit and Distinction. The qualification is graded Pass, Merit, Distinction, Distinction*