How much do you know about studying for an Apprenticeship or a Vocational Qualifications, like BTECs or NVQs? How do you apply? What level should you study at?
Before considering whether to apply for an apprenticeship or head off to college to study a vocational course, you need to choose the subject, job role or sector you’d like to progress in as this route is all about developing your skills with a set career goal in mind.
It’s likely you’ll have heard of an ‘apprenticeship’ before (they have been around for centuries!) as they’re all about learning a skill or trade from an experienced professional. Modern apprenticeships, however, are really flexible; you can study at a range of different levels, disciplines and at any age or stage of your career!
The levels of apprenticeships and other vocational qualifications (like BTECs or NVQs) can be confusing. There’s also thousands of subjects to choose from as they’re designed to give you the knowledge, skills and behaviours for a certain job role or industry sector. That’s why we’ve produced a bitesize video to give you an overview of this pathway to get you started.
Did you know that apprentices are employees? That means you get paid wages (and pay tax), have a contract and get holidays in the same way as a normal job. You can search for 100+ local apprenticeships here to find out what type of opportunities are available (and what they pay!)
Vocational Qualifications are usually assessed in units or modules. The assessments are varied and can include a combination of tests, projects, presentations and assignments. Some providers may have purpose-built work environments (like beauty salons, laboratories or aircraft cabins, for example!) Find out more about local providers of vocational qualifications here.
Think you've got it sussed? Check your knowledge with our Mini Quizlet featuring 10 quick questions all about Apprenticeships and Vocational Qualifications, levels and subjects, how to apply and choosing which type of vocational pathway is right for you.
Do you know how long an apprenticeship lasts? Can you study for a BTEC alongside an A-Level? Watch our quizlet video below to see how much you know...
Harder than you thought? If a formal, structured classroom-setting focusing on a single subject with a big exam at the end (like A-Levels) isn’t for you, then a more vocational skills-based route could be a good choice. You’ll gain hands-on experience, the opportunity to ‘try-out’ your chosen career and, if you choose the apprenticeship route, you’ll get paid too.
But before you choose a vocational study pathway, it’s a good idea to research sectors and careers to fully understand what type of job could be available at the end. Speak to friends and family, look up career profiles on websites like the National Careers Service, or use job-boards to search prospective vacancies.
You can search over 7,000+ jobs on Stockport Jobs Match and filter these by sector to see what jobs are available in IT, Marketing or Logistics for example. You can also find out more about the local economy here in Stockport with a quick guide to career pathways.
Looking for the answers to our quizlet? Download our PDF / presentation slides on Apprenticeships and Vocational Qualifications to reveal the correct answer to our Mini Quizlet together with a range of additional facts about vocational study pathways, local colleges and training providers, and how to apply.
Looking for more? Download our Lesson Plan to find extension activities, learning outcomes and follow-up tasks to build your knowledge of studying for an apprenticeship or vocational qualification in Stockport.
Now you understand more about what apprenticeships and vocational qualifications involve and the differences between them, you can start thinking about the job role and career paths these might open up, and how to apply for them! To help you get started, we've created an Individual Activity and Group Challenges to start conversations and spark ideas.
Not sure what jobs you can do with certain qualifications? Or what qualifications are essential for a particular job role or career path? Try our Qualifications Vs. Jobs Flashcards challenge to help you find out!
Thinking about the different job roles or career pathway you have in mind, can you create a CV to use for a college, apprenticeship or university application? Use our school leaver template to learn how to create a CV, what to include and how to use it to apply for a course or a part-time job for example.