Level 2 Diploma Professional Cookery

Start date(s):
31 Aug 2020
1 year
Level 2
Course Code:
Study Mode:
Full Time
Attendance Type:
Campus, Work Based
Attendance Pattern:
Awarded by:
City & Guilds
Framwellgate Moor Campus
Course costs:
16-18 - Free (UK & EEA)
19+ - £450, your course may be free
(previous year's fees)


This course will help you develop the basic skills and knowledge for further study or to prepare for a career within catering and hospitality.

It is perfect for individuals who would like to gain employment as a professional chef as it has been designed in consultation with industry specialists to ensure you are gaining the skills required by the industry.
sam it

A real vocational experience

Enjoy our new TV and online adverts, and find out from our students what it is like to study at a top-performing college.

FE Hospitality, catering cookery

Take a tour around our Professional Cookery & Hospitality facilities

Catering and hospitality students get hands-on experience of serving customers in our fantastic on-site restaurant. 


Age UK

Come Eat Together

Our Professional Cookery and Hospitality students have been involved in an award winning project for Age UK. 

Pancake Day PR 1

Pancake Day safety

New College Durham teamed up with County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service to promote a safe Pancake Day.

Christmas Lumch

Christmas Lunch 2016

Our Professional Cookery and Hospitality students prepared and served Christmas lunch for over 900 people. 

World Skills - Gemma & Ryan

Best in the country!

New College Durham students are celebrating after excelling at the prestigious World Skills UK finals.  

Minister visit

Ministerial visit

Our students prepared and served a fantastic lunch for the Minister for Skills and Apprenticeships.

Hospitality and Catering 3

Christmas at Le Nouveau

Every year Le Nouveau restaurant offer Christmas lunches throughout December.

Hospitality and Catering

Global Care charity dinner

Professional Cookery and Hospitality students delivered a charity night to raise funds for Global Care.

Major Series National Culinary Challenge 2015

Trainee chefs get a taste of success

Our catering students won four gold medals as some of the region’s best young chefs battled it out in a culinary challenge.

Hospitality and Catering

Working with local business women

Enterprising Women choose Le Nouveau Restaurant for their networking event.

Hospitality and Catering

New College Durham to host National Culinary Challenge

New College Durham is proud to be hosting the MajorSeries Culinary Challenge, in conjunction with the Craft Guild of Chefs.

Developing World Class Compeition Skills

Developing World Class Competition Skills

New College Durham was delighted to host the IFL/World Skills UK Vocational Masterclasses last week.

cooking catering award news

Cooking up awards at the NECTA competition

Catering and Hospitality students celebrated after cooking up a storm with 13 awards at the NECTA competition.


This course aims to provide you with the practical skills and theoretical knowledge needed to work as a professional chef within the hospitality and catering sector. It provides a basis for understanding different aspects of the sector in relation to individual roles and the industry as a whole. The course has been designed in consultation with industry specialists and gives a thorough and comprehensive introduction to the hospitality and catering sector.

To visit The Nationwide Caterers Association website, click here.


The following units are mandatory:
  • Developing skills for employment in the catering and hospitality industry
  • Food safety in catering
  • Health and safety in catering and hospitality
  • Healthier foods and special diets
  • Catering operations, costs and menu planning
  • Produce biscuit, cake and sponge products
  • Produce fermented dough products
  • Prepare and cook stocks, soups and sauces
  • Prepare and cook fruit and vegetables
  • Prepare and cook meat and offal
  • Prepare and cook poultry
  • Prepare and cook fish and shellfish
  • Prepare and cook rice, pasta, grains and egg dishes
  • Produce hot and cold desserts and puddings
  • Produce paste products.

Time commitment

Average number of hours per week

Work Placement
Assignment Feedback
Independent Learning


*Days and times of study are subject to change. Timetables are confirmed at the start of term.

Teaching & assessment

You will be assessed using the following methods:
  • Food safety assessment (multi-choice)
  • Observational assessment
  • Written assessments.

Exams will include:
  • 8 x B Craft assessments (cookery tests)
  • 2 x Craft assessments (cookery tests)
  • 10 x short answer question papers.

Maths and English

Maths and English skills are essential for the workplace and university.

If you have not achieved a new grade 9-4 or do not hold an A* to C in GCSE maths or English, do not worry, your study programme at college will include teaching that will support you to progress your skills in these subjects. If you achieved a grade 3 or hold a D in either maths or English, you will have the opportunity to re-sit your GCSE qualification with us. If your grade was lower than a 3, or your qualification is below a D, you will study Functional Skills. These qualifications will help you enhance your maths and English skills and can be taken at levels between Entry Level 1 up to and including

Both maths and English are embedded into the main study programme. You will need maths in order to understand weights and measures – this is important when weighing and measuring ingredients for a recipe as it must be done accurately. You will use basic maths when working out budgets and customer bills, such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and percentages. You may be required to calculate ratios of recipes if they need to be adjusted – likewise, if you are adjusting a cooking temperature, you will need to calculate how long it will take to ensure the food is cooked correctly. English is important in the workplace as it allows efficient and effective communication with colleagues, customers and staff. You will be required to speak and listen when completing group lunches, answering the restaurant’s telephone, taking customers’ food and drinks orders, and during practical sessions in the RWE. You will use English a lot during classroom based sessions as you will be required to take notes, and complete research for assignments and presentations. When you take bookings and orders, and complete food temperature records, allergen sheets and food order sheets, it is important to get accurate information and write it down effectively so you can understand it at a later date.

Maths & English

Maths and English skills are essential for the workplace and university.

Industry links:

Our hospitality and catering department hosts an annual national competition, in association with the Craft Guild of Chefs which is sponsored by Major International. Taking part in skills competitions will push you to challenge yourself and go beyond the normal expectations of your training programme. You will further your skills, build your confidence and develop your employability skills.

You will be offered the opportunity to be inspired by guest speakers, and go on a range of one day educational visits. These could include:
  • Durham Marriott Royal County Hotel
  • Radisson Blue Hotel Durham
  • Durham University
  • DH1 Restaurant
  • Finbarrs Restaurant
  • Major International
  • NECTA.

The above organisations help through delivery and invigilating of the main programme and competition.


You will complete a ten day placement at the Royal County Durham Marriott Hotel or the Radisson Blue Hotel Durham. The practical nature of the course means you will also gain experiences working in the training kitchen at the College, and kitchens and restaurants at the higher end of the market within Durham.
If you are a front of house student, you will also complete Barista training with Costa. This will allow you to gain an insight into higher standards within hospitality and catering.

You will be encouraged to push yourself and gain the most out of any work placements. It has been known for employers to follow up this trial period with an employment offer.

You could progress to Level 3 Hospitality and Leadership or Level 3 Professional Cookery at New College Durham, or a relevant programme at university, an apprenticeship or full-time employment.

You could become a member of the Institute of Hospitality. Click here to visit their website.

Progress onto further study

Level 3 Diploma Professional Cookery

This qualification will prepare you for a career within the catering and hospitality industry or for progression to higher education.

Meet our students

Jonie Arbiol CS

Jonie Arbiol

Jonie won various catering competitions and is now employed as a Sous Chef in Chapters Restaurant in Durham City.

What else?

If you want to know more about food standards, click here.

You can find out how to make it into baking by visiting the Craft Bakers Association website.


Please note these prices are for the current academic year and may be subject to change for our courses starting in future years.

Campus Image 1

Fees and funding

Find out more about course fees and financial support for UK, EU and non-EU students, plus how to pay your fees.

Refund policy square 2018/19

Refund Policy 19-20

View our refund policy for further and higher education programmes (page 2) and full cost courses.


Additional Costs

You will be required to buy a kitchen/restaurant uniform and knives from the College’s supplier, Russums – this will cost approximately £112.

It is advised that you purchase the Level 1 Practical Cookery book at £23.99p - this can be purchased online via Russums or through the College’s media shop.

The catering department arrange local, national and international trips which will come at an additional cost.

Interview Instructions

You will be invited to attend an interview at the College. This will provide you with an opportunity to meet your tutor and take a tour of the facilities.
Further Education

Getting ready for your college interview

Find out more information about your college interview.

Entry Criteria

In order to access this course, you must possess four GCSEs at a minimum of grades D (or equivalent), ideally this will include maths and English, or a relevant Level 1 Professional Cookery qualification.

Alternatively, it may be possible to enter the course with two years relevant industrial experience in hospitality and catering.