Photography BTEC Extended Certificate

Level 3, equivalent to 1 A Level.

Why should I study BTEC Photography?

Why should I study this subject?

The Visual Arts department at New College offers students the opportunity to be creative and develop their independent working skills in an exciting and supportive environment. The BTEC Photography course is a highly practical introduction to the subject where you will be introduced to a variety of techniques and produce industry standard, exciting and creative photographic work. As the course progresses you will have the opportunity to work more independently, write your own projects and specialise in areas of photography that interest you the most.

The course will conclude with you producing a portfolio of work and an end of year exhibition.

What will I study?

You will have the opportunity to study a wide variety of photographic techniques before producing your own independent work. This can include:

  • Composition: How to frame and organise images to create visual exciting photographs.
  • Digital photography: Functions of a digital camera and techniques such as macro- photography.
  • Digital manipulation: Using Adobe Photoshop to correct, alter and be creative with images.
  • Darkroom photography: You will learn how to take photographs using film photography and print pictures in a traditional darkroom.
  • Studio practice: Portrait photography, lighting and studio techniques.
  • Location photography: Going out on location to take photographs in a variety of different environments.
  • Animation: How to create moving images using photography.


What are the entry requirements?

Level 4 in English Language.

What skills do I need

You should:

  • Possess a genuine interest in photography
  • Have an ability to work practically and creatively
  • Be comfortable with the demands of a coursework subject
  • Have organisation and time management skills
  • Have creativity skills
  • Have an ability to work independently on projects set by your teachers.


How will I be taught?

A combination of traditional teaching and demonstrations moving onto independent student led sessions. In Year 12 there will be an introduction to a range of artistic skills and media, structured projects. In Year 13 the emphasis will be on you directing your own interests and projects.

How will I be assessed?

BTEC Photography is a coursework subject and will be continually assessed. The units are internally marked and externally moderated and will culminate in a final major project and exhibition.

What will the course prepare me for?

Creativity and visual communication are essential in many careers both inside the creative industries and out. You may go on to study a Foundation course or other higher education course such as Photography, Fine Art, Design, Graphics, Web design, Film and Lens-based Media as well as many other options.

How much private study should I expect to do?

As an approximate guideline BTEC subjects require 3-4 hours of independent study each.

What materials will I need to purchase?

Art materials maybe required throughout the course depending on specialism. A £10 fee will be charged for essential art materials.

What is the exam board?


This subject is for you if… you are interested in both creative and commercial photography, like using new technologies such as Adobe Photoshop and digital cameras, and perform well in coursework subjects.

This subject is not for you if… you perform better in examinations and don’t want to experience photography in a more vocational capacity.