View Full Version : Advanced advanced BTEC Diploma

11-12-2010, 02:25 AM
I have been talking to an Edexcel/BTEC affiliate about starting a mini college, weekend lectures, for engineers who want a diploma that gives them the best of NVQ level 3 and HND Air Conditioning & Refrigeration.

The affiliate is all for supporting me.

If I started such a mini-college what specifically should it endow its students with?

I did lecture level 3 nvq for nearly 2 years and I think that while it is a good route to introduce high school drop-outs to a bit of the technical side of refrigeration and air conditioning I do not think it is of any use whatsoever to those who want to take the technical aspects of refrigeration and air conditioning seriously.

11-12-2010, 07:55 PM
I imagine you would get many applicants for this type of course especially as it could be weekend lectures.

For me personally there aren't enough good courses that teach electrics and or controlls and even inverter technology and what impact it has on air conditioning/refrigeration system.

Since this is a huge part of air conditioning there aren't many good courses (if any) that cater for this.

Also heat load calculations and the like should be included as this is something that engineers ought to know.

11-12-2010, 08:10 PM
According to a Tertiary College web site:-


Business Management Techniques
Engineering Design
Engineering Science
Analytical Methods
Fluid Mechanics
Engineering Thermodynamics
Heat Transfer
Refrigeration and Air Conditioning
Programmable Logic Controller
Mechanical Principles
Further Analytical Methods
Project Management

One must ask - are you qualified to teach to this level Marc?

11-12-2010, 09:45 PM
One must ask - are you qualified to teach to this level Marc?

Frank - an important question but not necessarily one to be concerned about in the UK when it comes to the foundational degree route to a degree.

When HND students move onto university to complete years 4 and 5 of their building services degree of which HNC is year 1 and 2 and HND is year 3, the lecturers there must be sufficiently qualified academically. But my understanding of the UK system is that to deliver HNC and HND subjects the lecturers with work experience related to the topics they deliver is of even more importance than their academic qualifications. I did not ask about this specifically but I did infer it from generally what I witnessed.

I am not looking to offer HNC or HND qualifications - yet - not in the foreseeable future at least. I am only looking at given an advanced diploma in AC&R that is level 3 but engineers completing the course will be able to design (components selection) their own chilled water systems, their own air handling units, their own small supermarket pack systems. They will be experts to above HND level in psychrometrics and thermodynamics. They will be able to diagnose and rebuild failed inverter drives.

These will be level 3 diploma techs who in the field will come across no HND qualified person who knows more than them about the principles and workings of system.

I will be delivering the diploma from January - I have 5 students already.

I found that the material from which my HND students had to draw there assignment substance from was of a level easily understood by anyone with A levels math and Physics.

Certainly my understanding and use of math and physics is far superior to that required at HND levels.

In fact I was planning on writing a 24 month article series on the physics of AC&R, in the ACR Today mag who I'm currently writting short articles for, that would then be published as a book to be used by A levels students up to HND students because there is nothing available - text book wise - in the UK that properly imparts an understanding of engineering physics - nothing that unifies all the areas and reduces them down to kinetic and potential energy and thus I met no student who was not confused by physics including my HND students. But I think instead I will produce a lecture series on the topic - which I can deliver for a fee to schools, colleges and even universities through a contact I made in an organisation that exists precisely for that purpose - which I was very pleased to discover exists.

The problem is most Techs who are wanting to do Level 3 of their own volition want to do it because they want to understand thermodynamics, psychrometrics, duct and chilled water pipe (distribution services) design principles and much more on load calcs etc but level 3 fails miserably in the delivery of any such thing. Tech's instead have to do 3 boring bloody years doing an HND covering subjects they actually are not interested in.

I am looking to deliver the Level 3 Advanced Diploma series over a period of 18 months with 16 one-day lectures one Saturday a month. Then a random lecture the Sunday of every same weekend. I will cover the important or core aspects of those subjects in bold below listed as part of the BTEC HND family of subjects.

BTEC HND in Building Services Engineering

Compulsory Core Subjects

Design Principles and Application
Services Science
Analytical Methods
Management Principles and Application
Group Project
Health, Safety and Welfare

Specialist Units

Services Project Management
Engineering Mathematics
Quality Assurance and Control
Individual Student Project
Thermofluids and Acoustic Criteria
Air Conditioning A
Heating A
Electricity and Lighting
Air Conditioning B
Heating B
Piped Distribution Services
Energy Utilisation and Efficiency
Plumbing Technology
Refrigeration Technology
Refrigeration Electrical Technology
Advanced Refrigeration Systems
Electrical Theory
Electrical and Electronics Control Principles [0.5 unit]
Electrical Installation A [0.5 unit]
Lighting Applications
Power Supplies to Buildings
Building Fire Protection and Security
Electrical Installation B
Building Management Systems
Refrigeration Applications
Refrigeration Design and Plant Selection
Work-based Learning A
Work-based Learning B