If you want to gain a nationally recognised qualification, but don't feel ready for GCSEs or equivalent qualifications, an entry level certificate could be for you. These qualifications can help you build skills, increase your knowledge and boost your confidence. They are known as 'certificates' or 'awards', and are open to anyone interested in gaining a nationally recognised qualification. They are at level 1 of the National Qualifications Framework.
These are discussed with each individual.
The college will discuss a programme with each individual. This could include:
- traditional subjects such as English, science and maths
- skills areas such as literacy, numeracy and life skills
- general vocational subjects that give you a broad introduction to the world of work
- specific vocational subjects that tell you about a particular area of work, such as retail, hairdressing or office practice
How you are assessed
Entry level qualifications are made up of a number of units, each assessed separately. This means that your achievements are recognised at every step, as you complete each unit.
You are assessed on a combination of tests, assignments and tasks. These can be written, oral or practical.
Often, you'll also produce a portfolio that shows evidence of what you have achieved. It can contain things like witness statements (a written or oral account of your performance), video, audio and photographs. This is assessed by teachers in your school or learning centre.
Different subjects and courses will vary in structure, content and the number of units. When you complete all the units, you get the full certificate.
Study at a level to suit you
You can take entry level qualifications at three different levels. These levels are broadly the same as the National Curriculum levels 1, 2 and 3. 'Entry level' is the first level on the National Qualifications Framework.
Where they can lead
You can progress from one entry level to the next. At entry 3, the qualifications are designed to help you move on to related qualifications at level 1 of the National Qualifications Framework. They can also lead to work-based learning (such as an Apprenticeship) or straight into a job.