Career tools

Vocational qualifications e.g. BTEC, City and Guilds, OCR, Diplomas.

What is it?

BTECs, City & Guilds and OCR Nationals are vocational qualifications, available in a wide range of subjects. Vocational qualifications offer practical learning programmes that relate to specific job roles or employment sectors.

There are many different types of vocational qualifications in a wide range of subjects at all levels, from Entry Level right up to Level 8.

Vocational courses are designed to help you learn in a practical way about a specific job area. They can help you get the skills you need to start a job, progress in a career or go on to higher levels of education.

They have been designed in collaboration with industry, so they can equip you with the skills and knowledge that employers are looking for. The qualifications offer a mix of theory and practice, and can also include an element of work experience.

Vocational qualifications are changing. Click to find out more.

Where could I study?

Some schools offer vocational qualifications to students in Y10 and Y11. Many schools and all the colleges will offer vocational qualifications to post 16 and older students. 

How long will it take me?

The length of these courses varies from 3-4 months for short and specialist courses to around two years for a larger qualification.

Options after the course?

These qualifications can lead to a job or further study. For example, you could progress from a qualification at one level to higher levels in the same or related area of study. This could eventually lead to professional qualifications. You could also use a level 3 vocational qualification as a route into higher education as many attract UCAS tariff points.