Post 18 Options
It doesn’t take very long being in Post-16 to realise that these two years fly by and you are quickly faced with making long-term decisions about your future. This site is designed to help you make those choices, by providing you with information about the four main options available to students finishing Year 13:
- Gap Years
Some students choose to start work as soon as they have completed their Level 3 qualifications. However, they need to be mindful of the training that may or may not be available for long-term career development.
A degree apprenticeship enables students to gain a full undergraduate or master’s degree while they work. Degree apprenticeships take three to six years to complete, depending on the course level. Students will spend most of their time working and they’ll also study part-time at university. For example, students might go to university one or two days per week, or in short blocks, such as a week at a time. Overall, students spend about 20% of their time studying vs. 80% of their time working.
A degree can involve any of the following:
- Studying subjects singly or in combination. Some universities offer modular degrees that allow the freedom and flexibility to design a large part of your course.
- Studying a subject for its own sake or because it has work-related relevance.
- Applying for a sandwich degree. This is a degree combined with a year’s work experience. An employer, for example, in an engineering or science-related industry, might sponsor you.
- Studying abroad for part of the time.
A gap year can be useful to aid career planning when it has been planned for a particular purpose.
Students can gain a wide range of benefits from undertaking voluntary work, either during their studies or as part of a gap year. Such work enables students to gain practical experience and helps them to stand out from other applicants when applying for jobs and/or university courses.
Useful websites to learn about university:
- www.ucas.com – provides comprehensive, objective information on higher education
- www.applytouni.com – student information about the university, applying for a place, the application process, personal statements, and interactive map of university locations.
- www.whichuniversity.co.uk – information and advice on applying to university.
- www.prospects.ac.uk – graduate careers website, including careers advice, job profiles, work experience and post-graduate study.
- www.gov.uk/studentfinance – information on student finance, how and when to apply, entitlements, how to pay back etc
Useful websites for apprenticeships:
- www.gov.uk/topic/further-education-skills/apprenticeships - learn more about what apprenticeships are and what support employers can be provided with
- nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk - access support from the national career service if you are looking for guidance and advice
- www.apprenticeshipguide.co.uk - explore the range of apprenticeship opportunties and learn from current apprentices and their experiences
- www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship - search for apprenticeship opportunities in the local area