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If you are in Year 10 or 11 it’s probably time to start thinking about what you’ll do next. You can keep on learning after Year 11 by going to college or sixth form – called Further Education (FE) – or you can study part-time through work-based learning (e.g. an Apprenticeship). There’s so much choice, so where do you start?
First off, take a look at our Learning Paths diagram (click to enlarge), then read on below for more information
There are lots of different types of qualification, so talk to your teachers, parents and Personal Adviser about all the options available to you. Some of the main qualifications include:
Usually studied over 2 years. Most people will study for their AS levels in the first year, then continue them at A2 level in the second year.
A new qualification that combines classroom and practical learning. Available at three levels – Foundation, Higher and Advanced, (equivalent to GCSEs or A levels depending on the level …) and usually studied over 2 years.
There are 5 levels of NVQ and people normally choose to study them to compliment a paid or voluntary job. For example, someone working in an admin office role may take an NVQ in Business and Administration.
Apprenticeships give you training and experience in a ‘hands-on’ role, whilst helping you work towards a qualification (such as BTEC or NVQ) at the same time.
Six levels of BTEC are available, which are equivalent to GSCE (Levels 1 & 2), A-level (Level 3) and university degree (Levels 4-6).
Key skills are designed to get you ready for the working world. You’ll gain these skills as you study for qualifications or vocations. They are split into 6 categories over 5 levels.
You can study in sixth forms, colleges, in work based learning and even through employment. Use the links below to find out more:
Search the ApplySheffield database for local courses and qualifications. You will find information on local sixth forms, colleges, training providers and work-based learning courses (e.g. Apprenticeships)
The Apprenticeship Matching Service lets you search and apply for
Apprenticeship vacancies across the country.
If you want more info on Diplomas, visit the new Diploma website.
There’s loads of choice when it comes to learning, including completely new subjects that you won’t have had the chance to study at school.
To get the ball rolling, think about the points below:
• Are there subjects you enjoy at school that you want to carry on?
• How do you learn best – e.g. in a classroom or by real, practical experience?
• Do you have hobbies or interests that you can study?
• Is there a particular course you want to do at university or job you want to do? What requirements do they have?
Speak to your teachers and Personal Adviser for more advice.
If you continue in education or training after school you could get financial support.
Important Information regarding EMA (Educational Maintenance Allowance)
EMA will close to new applicants from January 2011. Learner support funds will be available through schools, colleges and training providers to help students who most need it to continue in learning. If you currently get EMA you will continue to receive it for the rest of this academic year, but you will not receive it next academic year.
Visit Money to Learn for the latest information.
You’ll find loads more info on financial matters (like funding for education and work-based learning) in our Money Section.