A number of qualifications are needed to become a qualified electrician. Find out more about the entry requirements and the courses trainees should take in England, Scotland and Wales. Although the courses differ slightly, there is a broad similarity in that they are graded at three levels or steps to make comparison easier.  

What qualifications are considered a requirement?

If you are interested in starting to train to be a fully qualified electrician in England and Wales, you will need to take the City & Guilds domestic electrical installation course. This is divided into three levels – Step 1, Diploma Level 2/Level 3 and NVQ Level 3.  

The Step 1 course is aimed at school leavers, and you will usually need at least 2 GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D). 

 Step 1 comprises 18 days of training and can be taken in one block or spread out over a longer period. Training takes place in person at a college local to you. 

What electrician qualifications are available? 

Domestic Electrical Course  

The essential Step 1 foundation course for domestic electrical work, including modules on PAT testing and electric vehicle charging.  

City & Guilds 2365 Level 2 Diploma 

Step 2 of the domestic electrical course programme covers a wide range of electrical installation skills and modules that allow trainees to progress to commercial installation.  

City & Guilds 2365 Level 3 Diploma 

The most comprehensive course for trainee electricians, the NVQ Level 3 electrical diploma teaches all the key skills to become a qualified electrician.  

SECTT Modern Apprenticeship in Electrical Installation Stage 1, 2 and 3 

The comprehensive programme consists of college learning and work experience with an employer, where you will learn the practical and theoretical fundamentals of electrical installation. On completion, you will receive an SCQF 7 in Electrical Installation. 

The same City & Guilds courses apply in Wales as they do in England. City & Guilds are also collaborating with EAL in Wales to provide a new suite of fundable Construction and Building Services Engineering qualifications, which contain some electrical installation modules.  

What will you learn for each level? 

Level 1
  • Use of basic hand tools 
  • Installing and terminating twin and earth cable 
  • Understanding and installing standard circuits for Lighting, Power & Cookers  
  • Connecting of bonding to gas and water services 
  • How consumer units work and connection to them 
  • Correct selection of equipment and special locations 
  • Basic SI Units, Ohms Law and Power Calculations 
  • Calculating maximum demand and applying diversity for a domestic installation 
  • Correct selection of cable sizes 
  • Compliance with the Building Regulations 
  • Earthing Systems 
  • Circuit Protection 
  • Safe Isolation (Single Phase) 
  • Fundamentals of inspection and testing 
  • How to use and apply the Wiring Regulations (BS7671). 
Level 2
  • Electrical Installations Technology – mainly theory based 
  • Principles of Electrical Science - mainly theory based 
  • Installation of Wiring Systems and enclosures – theory training 
  • Health and Safety in Building Services Engineering - practical & theory training 
  • Understand how to communicate with others within Building Services Engineering - practical & theory training. 
Level 3
  • Health and Safety in Building Services Engineering  
  • Principles of Electrical Science 
  • Electrical Installations: Inspection, Testing and Commissioning 
  • Electrical Installations: Fault Diagnosis and Rectification 
  • Fundamental Principles and Requirements of environmental technology systems 
  • Electrical systems design 
  • Career awareness in building services engineering.  

Become a qualified electrician through an apprenticeship 

Find out more about apprenticeships, and search for an electrician apprenticeship on Talentview.