Thinking about doing further studying or going on a training course? If you're unsure what's on offer and what you might gain from more qualifications, TheSite.org gives you the lowdown.
Why should I study?
There are many reasons for studying:
- You're interested in the subject
- You want to learn a practical skill
- You need a qualification that's recognised in your profession
- You want to find out if you're suited to a certain field of work
Can more qualifications help me get a job or develop my career?
Of course, and here's why:
- You can apply for jobs that request a particular qualification
- Your CV will stand out amongst those that don't have the qualifications
- You'll feel confident about being able to do a particular job
- Employers pay more to graduates or those who are suitably qualified
- You could get a more highly skilled, interesting or senior job
- You'll show you're committed to working in a particular industry
- You have a better chance of being promoted
What qualifications should I go for?
Find out which subjects are appropriate for the type of work you're seeking and what levels of qualification are required. Talk to a careers advisor, a Connexions advisor or even try and contact people in that profession for advice. Search the job profiles on the Careers Advice website to find out what qualifications and experience employers look for and look at books relating to your industry and job adverts to see what's expected.
For those over 16 with GCSE/S-grades there are general academic courses or vocational ones. You can study a mixture of both, full or part-time at sixth form, sixth form college or a technical or FE college. Have a look at our post-16 qualifications for more information.
Higher Education courses are for students aged over 18 (over 17 in Scotland) with one or two A-levels, Scottish Highers or equivalent qualification, such as NVQs or Diplomas. You can study at college, university or institute of higher education:
- Higher National Diploma (HND)
- First degree, for example, BA, BSc or BEd
After your degree
If you already have a degree and you meet the entry requirements you can think about:
- A Masters degree or a Postgraduate certificate
- A course offered by a professional body or insttute
What will it cost me?
- Staying on at school or college is free, up until the age of 19
- For higher education, you will have to pay top-up fees but you may get financial help with tuition fees and loans for living expenses
- Your employer may sponsor you to do a training course, degree or professional qualification
- If you work you'll usually be expected to pay for an evening or weekend course yourself
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