Your choices at 18
Yes it's decision time again! Time to choose your post 18 options.
You now need to choose your options at 18, and there are plenty of things to choose from.
The choices you make will be affected by many things like your financial situation, interests, your attitude to study, your qualifications, the job market, etc.
Another big factor is the job or career you have in mind and now is a good time to really get into the detail about which job sectors you are interested in, what sort of opportunities they offer and what qualifications they are looking for. Find out more about Job Sectors.
You could consider:
- Getting a job that offers training
- Doing a higher education level course – either full-time, part-time or by distance learning.
- Doing an Advanced or Higher Apprenticeship
- Taking a year out (a gap year)
As always, getting advice and support from those who know you or are career specialists is very important, as is finding out about the different employment options available to you and the qualifications and skills you need for a particular career.
If you have level 3 qualifications like A Levels, Advanced Apprenticeship, BTEC National, etc. then you could explore higher level study. If you haven't, but would be interested in higher level study later, there are lots of ways in, through Access Courses and through study alongside work.
The Lifepilot site has information for over 21 year olds on how to get into higher level study - even without level 3 qualifications, using skills and experiences from life and work.
A level students thinking about Apprenticeships
If you have finished your A Levels you might be considering an Apprenticeship. This can be a good route if you want to get training for a specific job sector and be earning at the same time. There are all sorts of opportunities for fantastic Apprenticeships developing all the time.
However, here are a few things you need to consider:
- An Advanced Apprenticeship is a level 3 qualification, the same level as A levels. If you do not have the relevant job specific experience you might have to complete an Advanced Apprenticeship - although you might be able to complete it quicker than a 16 year old.
- Some sectors and employers are now offering Higher Apprenticeships, which are higher education level qualifications (level 4 +). Employers are asking for A Levels and other level 3 qualifications as entry requirements - search for vacancies online.
- Although, the number of Higher Apprenticeships is growing not all sectors offer these qualifications so make sure you check what is available in your chosen sector.
- Higher Apprenticeship opportunitites are likely to be highly competitive!
- To find out more about Higher Apprenticeships go to www.justgohigher.co.uk or search for them on the Internet
Skills are also important!
Remember - young people with qualifications are more attractive to employers than those without and that work experience and general employability skills, like team work, communication, etc are also valued.
It’s back to those three important questions again:
- Where am I now? (What qualifications, skills, interests, etc. do I have?)
- Where do I want to get to? (What would I like to be doing in 5 years time – job, house, children, etc.?)
- How will I get there? (What course or training is likely to get you where you want to go?)
If you would like to get online or telephone advice from a careers adviser you can click this link to access an adviser from the National Careers Service
If you need to write a CV for a job follow this link to watch a video explaining how to do it.
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