Qualification Information

VTCT Product Code: BT3ED2 GLH: 0 Age Restriction: 16
Qualification Number: 601/6978/3 Units: 0 - 26 Registration End Date: 31st Dec 2019
Level: 3

Additional Information

Statement of purpose


Who is this qualification for?


The VTCT Level 3 Extended Diploma in Spa Therapy is a technical level qualification aimed at 16-18 learners who are in a full-time Level 3 education programme and wish to pursue a career as an employed spa therapist.

There are no formal entry requirements for this qualification although it is likely that learners will hold a Level 2 beauty therapy or equivalent qualification.

What does this qualification cover?


This qualification is based on the national occupational standards for spa therapy and includes all the required elements to work effectively as a spa therapist. Learners must achieve all mandatory units which include:

- Health and safety in the salon
- Client care and consultation
- Steam, sauna and hydrotherapy
- Body wraps
- History and origins of massage therapies
- Swedish massage
- Anatomy and physiology for the face and body systems
- Holistic facial treatments
- Spa pedicure
- Spa manicure
- Promote and sell products and services

This qualification is dedicated entirely to the skills and attributes required to gain successful employment as a spa therapist. Learners will develop the knowledge and understanding of relevant anatomy and physiology and health and safety. They will also develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to consult with clients, successfully promote and retail products, provide a range of treatments that cover massage, heat and hydrotherapy, body wrapping, holistic facial, manicure and pedicure processes, as well as understand the history and origins of massage therapies. In parallel, learners will develop their communication and customer service skills, their awareness of environmental sustainability and their commercial skills, all of which are valued highly by employers. Problem solving and research skills will also be developed.

In addition to completing mandatory units, learners are required to complete five optional units. A variety of optional units are available which include (this list is not exhaustive): mechanical massage, stone therapy, Indian head massage, Thai stamp massage, body analysis, working with colleagues in the beauty related industry, salon reception duties and managing a commercial column.

Why is this qualification the most suitable?


This qualification is one of two VTCT technical level qualifications in spa therapy. In addition to this qualification there is the Level 3 Diploma in Spa Therapy, both qualify learners to become spa therapists.

At 515 to 610 guided learning hours (GLH), the Extended Diploma is far larger and most suited to learners who have achieved English and maths at Level 2 and wish to focus the majority of their programme on spa therapy, whereby they will develop a broader range of technical skills.

The Diploma at 410 GLH is most suitable for learners who continue, as part of their programme of study to work towards achieving Level 2 English and maths, or those undertaking another qualification in parallel. Learners may wish to progress from the Diploma to the Extended Diploma.

Which subjects might complement this qualification?


As a service-sector qualification, vocational subjects which may complement this qualification include, customer service, business studies and management, marketing, retail, fashion and photography. Academic subjects that may complement this qualification include maths, English, art and design, design and technology and science.

What could this qualification lead to?


Learners who achieve this qualification are eligible to become members of the British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology (BABTAC) or Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT). As a spa therapist, learners could progress directly into employment in a variety of contexts, which include:

- commercial salons
- health farms
- destination/day spas
- independent/self-employed/mobile/home-based settings
- cruise liners

Whilst the primary purpose of this qualification is to prepare learners for employment, learners may choose to develop their knowledge and skills further by completing a specialist qualification at Level 4 in one or more of the following areas:

- salon management
- holistic therapies
- specialist beauty treatments

Who supports this qualification?


This qualification is regulated by the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual).

This qualification has been submitted to the Department for Education for teaching to 16-19 year olds from September 2016, and will be first reported in the technical level category of the 2018 16-19 performance tables

This qualification has been developed collaboratively with employers, professional associations and key stakeholders in the spa therapy sector. Because of this, the knowledge, skills and competencies gained will provide the best possible opportunity for progression into employment.

This qualification is formally supported by the following organisations:


NameWebsite address
British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetologybabtac.com



Qualification Structure

Unit Code Unit Ref Unit Title Level Credits GLH
BT3ED2.EX1 External Examination 1 BT3ED2 3
BT3ED2.EX2 External Examination 2 BT3ED2 3
BT3ED2.SYN Graded Synoptic Assessment BT3ED2 3
Unit Code Unit Ref Unit Title Level Credits GLH
UBT105M J/507/5432 Body wraps 3 30
UBT106M L/507/5433 Steam, sauna and hydrotherapy 3 45
UBT107M Y/507/5435 Spa pedicure 3 30
UBT108M K/507/5438 Spa manicure 3 30
UBT119M A/507/5458 Promote and sell products and services 3 25
UBT137M M/507/5490 Holistic facial treatments 3 30
UBT90M D/507/5517 Client care and consultation 3 20
UBT95M M/507/5537 Anatomy and physiology for the face and body systems 3 90
UBT96M A/507/5539 Swedish massage 3 50
UBT98M R/507/5546 History and origins of massage therapies 3 30
UCO28M L/507/5626 Health and safety in the salon 3 30
Unit Code Unit Ref Unit Title Level Credits GLH
UBT100X D/507/5419 Indian head massage 3 50
UBT101X D/507/5422 Stone therapy 3 50
UBT103X A/508/4502 Facial Electrical Treatments 3 55
UBT104X F/508/4503 Body electrical treatments 3 55
UBT143X R/507/5501 Working with colleagues in the beauty industry 3 25
UBT147X D/507/5503 Thai stamp massage 3 50
UBT92X H/507/5521 Body analysis 3 10
UBT99X D/507/5551 Mechanical massage 3 20
UCO29X D/507/5629 Salon reception duties 3 25
UCO30X Y/507/5631 Social media marketing for a hair or beauty business 3 25
UCO31X D/507/5632 Planning and implementing promotional activities 3 25
UCO32X T/507/5636 Managing a commercial column 3 25

*For full details of the Rules of Combination for this qualification please see the Qualification Specification/Record of Assessment book.

Centres approved to run this qualification

VTCT accredits centres to offer our qualifications, but cannot advise which centres are running particular courses at any time. Please contact the centre directly to find out if they currently offering your chosen qualification.

NB: The location displayed for each centre is based upon the centre's main address. The location displayed is not necessarily the only location that the centre can deliver VTCT qualifications from. For further information on a centre's delivery capabilities please select the centre's website address.

Centre Name Telephone Website Location
Warrington & Vale Royal College 01925 494494 Visit website Cheshire - Warrington
Furness College 01229 825017 Visit website Cumbria
East Sussex College – Eastbourne 0303 003 9300 Visit website East Sussex
Stockport College 0161 296 5000 Visit website Greater Manchester - Stockport
Trafford College (Altrincham Campus) 01618867046 Visit website Greater Manchester - Trafford
Basingstoke College of Technology 01256 354141 Visit website Hampshire
Canterbury College 01227 811111 Visit website Kent
Kent Sports Academy Limited 01233 641000 Visit website Kent
Salon Hijab Ltd T/A Salon Hijab Academy 020 8204 8833 Visit website London - Harrow
Harrogate College 01423 879466 Visit website North Yorkshire
West Nottinghamshire College 01623 627191 Visit website Nottinghamshire
Bath College 01225 312191 Visit website Somerset - Bath and North East Somerset
Stoke on Trent College - Cauldon Campus 01782 208208 Visit website Staffordshire - Stoke-on-Trent
Halesowen College 0121 602 8025 Visit website West Midlands - Dudley
Swindon College 01793 491591 Visit website Wiltshire
New College Swindon 01793 611470 Visit website Wiltshire - Swindon
Coleg Cambria - Yale Campus 0300 30 30 007 Visit website Wrexham