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General Chat Thread, Career Path / Employment Route in General; Hello everybody, My name is Patrick and I am currently in a process of studying BTEC National Dip in ICT ...
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    Career Path / Employment Route

    Hello everybody,

    My name is Patrick and I am currently in a process of studying BTEC National Dip in ICT. I am doing very good, not like the course is giving me any challenge at all... I am a distinction student and I want to chose the best path in ICT but I have a few questions that worry me a little. I am aware of the fact that in today's world the demand for ICT is huge and jobs are pretty welcoming in this category of work. After I finish the National Diploma I want to proceed to the higher stage of the ICT education which is either HND, Foundation degree or simply University. I am finishing my course in 2014 and I am completely positive that I don't want to go to University then but I am thinking of doing either HDN or Foundation degree.

    However, the thing is that I am a foreigner and started my education late and doing A Levels at 21 years of age and never actually had a job. I did have some work experience in the past organised by the school but nothing very official that I could get reference from. I know for sure that I would like to bind my life with ICT and get a good paying job like everybody, obviously.

    Although up to this point you may think that if I am so knowledgeable of the subject then why am I even asking - this is not the case, well not in its entirety.
    I am struggling with the course I should chose, or rather the type of course in ICT. Should it be HND or Foundation degree? I am surely very careful man and trying to plan out my future a year before, but I am completely positive that I will get the grades to pass to whatever course I so desire.

    At this point I would like to ask YOU the users about your opinion experience and explain to me the difference between HND and Foundation degree besides the fact that the two provide in some way different ICT courses. Personally I was told to chose the Foundation degree because it provides a placement and it gives the student some sort of experience and of course a paper to show the employer.

    Can yous share your experiences and opinions with me please?

    Much appreciated.
    Last edited by Redundant; 22nd May 2013 at 10:08 PM.

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    featured_spectre's Avatar
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    Not all foundation degrees provide placements, and on top of that, they are the same thing just branded differently, on completion it still takes 1 year at uni to get the full degree.

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    That's true, but it depends if you want the full degree.

    I've had a job out of that. Started at the school on the summer placement between the first and second years of a Foundation Degree (which didn't really challenge me either, though it was quite fun), stayed there for two days/week from that September, then went full-time at the end of the course. Personally I did want to do the final year at the time, but at the end of the day it was a job and looking back I think I made the right decision. I regret not getting the full BSc but given the same choice I'd make it again I think.

    Foundation Degrees are also one way to get basically the first two years of a three-year Degree course for far less money (£1250/year for me - the second of which I got a grant for - versus in excess of £3K at least). Depending on where you're from in the EU you may even be able to get some degree of subsidy but I'm not sure if that's the case any more. On completion of e.g. MMU's FdSc Enterprise Computing (my course), you could finish it at MMU itself or at Huddersfield or a couple of others with compatible syllabi quite easily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    That's true, but it depends if you want the full degree.

    I've had a job out of that. Started at the school on the summer placement between the first and second years of a Foundation Degree (which didn't really challenge me either, though it was quite fun), stayed there for two days/week from that September, then went full-time at the end of the course. Personally I did want to do the final year at the time, but at the end of the day it was a job and looking back I think I made the right decision. I regret not getting the full BSc but given the same choice I'd make it again I think.

    Foundation Degrees are also one way to get basically the first two years of a three-year Degree course for far less money (£1250/year for me - the second of which I got a grant for - versus in excess of £3K at least). Depending on where you're from in the EU you may even be able to get some degree of subsidy but I'm not sure if that's the case any more. On completion of e.g. MMU's FdSc Enterprise Computing (my course), you could finish it at MMU itself or at Huddersfield or a couple of others with compatible syllabi quite easily.
    Hey Emphelyon, I want to stay full time for the Foundation/HND course to get it over with and get the degree partially completed and maybe eventually fully. You said the degree is 3 years? So, after the HND that lasts for 2 years there is 1 year left at UNI? Is this just specific to the course you chose or in general? I personally thought that ICT degrees are 4 years. Whether or not my college (southern regional college in northern ireland) offers placements, I will be choosing the ICT courses that do offer placement.

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    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    An HND course is a separate qualification route and as far as I know it doesn't equate to Degree course years, but the Foundation Degree does. Or rather, it works for certain other BSc course where the FdSc modules you study will basically be pretty much the same as the BSc ones. FdSc courses are often taught at FE Colleges rather than on the HE Uni campus too. If you find an FdSc course you like the look of, it's a good idea to enquire as to the progression routes as they should be able to give you a good idea.

    Here's an example, the course I did though it's changed quite a bit since then:

    South Cheshire College - Courses: Computing - Enterprise Computing ~ Foundation Degree - FdSc

    You could then progress onto one of these:

    Individual Subject List · Courses by subject area · Find a course · Undergraduate Study · Study at MMU · Manchester Metropolitan University

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    An HND course is a separate qualification route and as far as I know it doesn't equate to Degree course years, but the Foundation Degree does. Or rather, it works for certain other BSc course where the FdSc modules you study will basically be pretty much the same as the BSc ones. FdSc courses are often taught at FE Colleges rather than on the HE Uni campus too. If you find an FdSc course you like the look of, it's a good idea to enquire as to the progression routes as they should be able to give you a good idea.

    Here's an example, the course I did though it's changed quite a bit since then:

    South Cheshire College - Courses: Computing - Enterprise Computing ~ Foundation Degree - FdSc

    You could then progress onto one of these:

    Individual Subject List · Courses by subject area · Find a course · Undergraduate Study · Study at MMU · Manchester Metropolitan University
    Thank you Ephelyon for your involvement. Every comment is a good source of information. I will be contacting with my local careers adviser in the near future just to confirm but I am pretty sure I will be doing FOUNDATION DEGREE IN COMPUTING AND NETWORK SYSTEMS - SRC. Regarding your placement, as I am not from this country I sometimes lack the obvious knowledge that the natives have about current educational system - when did you start your placement, 2nd year of the course?
    Last edited by Redundant; 22nd May 2013 at 10:12 PM.

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    It's normally a sandwich placement over the summer break between the first and second years.

    I notice that page mentions the University of Ulster as the awarding body; this is presumably where you could continue then:

    University of Ulster Prospectus - Computer Science



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