International Access Programme

ATHE Level 3 Diploma in English and Communications for Business

The ATHE Level 3 Diploma in English and Communications for Business is a 60-credit Ofqual regulated qualification and is the equivalent level to an A Level or Access to HE qualification. It has been designed for learners who wish to progress to a business or management degree and may not have the traditional entry qualifications usually required.

The qualification aims to provide learners with the underpinning knowledge and understanding of a range of topics within the English and Communications for Business environment. These topics will allow learners to develop practical and theoretical approaches to solving problems and finding solutions using English and Communications for Business.

This qualification sits within a suite of ATHE L3 qualifications, which is called the International Access Programme (IAP). Each qualification has a credit value of 60. Learners may choose to study one or more of the qualifications in this suite. Extending the learning to more than one qualification will increase knowledge, understanding and the development of a range of study skills. It will also increase the total number of credits achieved so learners are more qualified to access higher education, higher level apprenticeships or employment.

At a glance:

  • Graded with Pass, Merit and Distinction
  • Progression to a bachelor’s degree at a range of university partners –
  • 600 learning hours, usually studied over 4 months to an academic year
  • Designed with support from universities
  • Can be delivered in the classroom, by distance or by blended learning.


Learners must complete all 5 mandatory units.

To see the contents of each unit you can view the Qualification Specification.

Business Communications

This introductory unit aims to ensure learners understand the range of business communications which occur and their importance for business success

Mobile and Digital Business Communications 

This unit aims to develop knowledge and understanding of professional communication in today’s increasingly global, digital, social mobile world and the impact of new digital technologies on business communication.

Verbal and Non-Verbal Business Communications

This unit aims to develop knowledge and understanding of the conventional verbal and non-verbal professional communications used in businesses. 

Business English: Reading and Writing

This unit aims to develop the learner’s competencies when using Business English for reading and writing purposes.

Business English: Speaking and Listening

This unit aims to develop knowledge, understanding and skills in the use of Business English for speaking and listening purposes.

Progression Routes

Learners who complete this qualification can progress to study a variety of bachelor’s degrees at a university such as one of our partner universities. For information on ATHE university top-ups please see our Progression Routes here.

Entry Criteria

Age: 16 +

Entry profile:

  • 5 or more GCSEs at grades C and above or Grade 4 and above
  • other related level 2 subjects
  • other equivalent international qualifications

Further Reading

  • Information Sheet
  • Request a Fee Structure relevant to your country