The next level: T Levels - a complete guide
What are T Levels?
T Levels are new, two-year technical qualifications that are offered in England only. A T Level is equivalent to three A Levels and is designed to provide you with specific skills and industry experience, to make you more employable as you enter the world of work. They can also be used to set you up for a higher-level or degree apprenticeship or university.
As part of a T Level, you’ll split your time between classroom-based learning and an industry placement of at least 45 days, which will be organised by your training provider
It will eventually be possible to take T Levels in a range of construction-related subjects, including:
- Design, surveying and planning for construction
- Building services engineering
- Onsite construction
- Maintenance, installation and repair
- Manufacturing, processing and control.
T Levels in design, surveying and planning for construction will be available from September 2020 at various training providers around the UK. You can find out which T Levels are being offered in your area here.
In Autumn 2021, you will be able to enrol on a course in building services engineering or onsite construction.
From Autumn 2022, maintenance, installation and repair and manufacturing, processing and control courses will be offered.
Who are T Levels designed for?
T Levels are a new option for young people aged 16-18 to pursue after GCSEs. They are an alternative to apprenticeships and A Levels, offering a chance to continue studying with the benefit of a guaranteed work placement.
If you know which area of construction you’d like to work in and want to combine practical and theoretical classroom learning with a hands-on work placement experience, a T Level could be your perfect fit.
What’s included in a T Level?
T Levels take two years to complete and involve:
- A technical qualification - the T Level (providing you with specialist theoretical and practical skills)
- An industry placement with an employer
- A minimum standard in Maths and English (if you don’t already have these).
Your time will be split between classroom-based learning (up to 80%) and a placement within the construction industry (at least 20%). The industry placement is an opportunity to put the skills you’ve gained at college into practice in a real-life situation.
Depending on the employer you train with, your industry placement may be completed as a block, on day release or as a mix of the two. You may be able to split your time between more than one placement, to gain more diverse experience.
What happens after my course?
Once you’ve completed your T Level, you’ll be able to apply for jobs in skilled employment at entry level. Alternatively, you could apply for a higher or degree apprenticeship, or a university place to continue your professional training in construction.
The employer offering your industry placement may recommend that you apply for a job in their company, or may be able to provide a reference to help you find work after your course.
What do T Levels cost?
T Level costs are covered by the Government, although you may be expected to cover the price of basic equipment or trips.
Depending on your personal circumstances, your training provider may be able to advise on the financial support available to you.
How do I apply for a T Level?
If your local college or training provider is offering T Levels, you can apply for a course directly through their website or contact them for more information.
You can search for local providers via the UK Government’s official T Level website.
What’s in it for employers?
Construction-related T Levels have been developed in partnership with businesses and employers from the industry to upskill young people for success in the workplace.
Employers benefit from the opportunity to train young workers in specific skills, and make the most of emerging talent. Through T Levels, they are able to build stronger links with the community and offer a chance for existing employees to develop their own mentoring and leadership abilities.
T Levels not for you?
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