Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Options after your post-16 qualifications

The thought of what to do after your post-16 qualifications may appear daunting, but there are many options for you to consider. From carrying on in full-time study to getting a flavour of work with your qualification, this short blog post looks at your options.

Study full-time
There are a few options available to you if you wish to stay in full-time study. Here’s a selection of what you may be able to study:

  •  A levels – you usually study three subjects or more. There is a wide range of subjects available. They’re usually studied at the same time over two years. 
  • Scottish Highers – the main qualification required for entry into higher education if you live in Scotland. There are over 60 subjects and you usually study four or five. Each Higher is made up of units – you need to pass all units and the course assessment to achieve the qualification. Highers and Advanced Highers are considered the equivalents of AS and A levels.

  • BTECs – give you a broader knowledge of a particular sector or industry. They are available in a range of sizes which are equivalent to one, two, or three A levels. They can be taken in combination with other qualifications.
  • Baccalaureates – these are broad-based programmes that combine academic subjects with components designed to develop skills.

  • Cambridge Pre-U – this involves studying a range of courses in a single qualification. There are 26 principal subjects available, and each is a two year course with exams at the end. You can take up to four Pre-U subjects, and they can be combined with other qualifications such as A levels.

Apprenticeships are a great opportunity for you to earn a salary while you gain a qualification at the same time. They give you the chance to work alongside experienced staff while you gain valuable work experience. Interested? Check out our blog post on why you should consider an apprenticeship.

Traineeships prepare young people for future careers. They last anywhere between six weeks and six months, with content tailored to your individual needs. They offer:

  • work preparation training
  • skills you need to find a job
  • maths and English support
  • work experience
Find out more about traineeships and whether you’d be suitable on ucas.com.

A National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) offers you the skills to do a specific job; anything from plumbing to hairdressing. There are five NVQ levels so you’ll start at a level that suits your ability and work your way up. You’re tested on your ability in the workplace and you’ll be assessed to prove you can do certain work-related tasks. Sound like your cup of tea? Check out more info on NVQs on our website.

Supported internships
Supported internships are just for students with learning difficulties or learning disabilities who want to get a job and need extra support.

You can find out more about supported internships from your school, college, social worker, or from a job centre. Also, check out your local authority and visit the Preparing for Adulthood website for more info.

If you’ve got any further questions about what to do next, check out our website or send us a question on Facebook or Twitter.

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