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T Levels: The UK's New Vocational (Technical) Focused Qualification

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T levels are a new type of two-year vocational qualification, which are the same level as A Levels, that will set you on the path to your chosen career. A key part of the qualification is an industry placement – which will help you get ready for work. They will last at least 45 days and depending on the course may be undertaken as a block or as individual days.  

They are based on the same standards as apprenticeships – which have been designed by employers with the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education – to make sure that young people under 19 develop the knowledge and skills required by employers after their GCSEs.

T levels will start at Leicester College in September 2021 in the listed subjects. Take a look at the T levels below to find out more about what you will learn, career pathways and entry requirements for the courses. For all T levels you will need grade 4 in English and maths GCSE.

T LevelPathwaySpecialism
ConstructionOnsite constructionCarpentry and joinery
Building services engineering for constructionElectrical and electronic equipment engineering
Electrotechnical engineering
Heating engineering
Plumbing
DigitalDigital production, design and developmentDigital production, design and development
Digital support and servicesNetwork cabling
Digital support
Education and childcareEarly years education and childcare
Health and scienceHealthSupporting the adult nursing team
Supporting the midwifery team
Supporting the mental health team
ScienceLaboratory services

If you are not quite ready to start a T level but want to start studying towards your chosen career, then a Transition Programme may be for you.

From September 2022 we plan to also be offering T levels in

  • Management and administration
  • Engineering and manufacturing design and development
  • Maintenance, installation and repair for engineering and manufacturing
  • Manufacturing, processing and control
  • Finance
  • Accountancy

If you have already applied for a T level find out more about what happens next.

How are T Levels graded?

T Levels will comprise five parts. Some of these receive a grade, while others need confirmation that it has been successfully completed: 

  1. Core component (graded A*-E), where you will learn a broad range of topics from across the whole of your chosen industry.
  2. Occupational specialisms (graded Pass, Merit, Distinction or Distinction* for each specialism), you will focus your learning on your chosen specialism.
  3. English and maths qualifications (confirmation that minimum requirements have been met), even though you will already have your maths and English GCSE (or equivalent) you will still develop these skills in the context of your chosen industry.
  4. Industry placement (confirmation that this has been successfully completed), we will support you to find the best placement for you, or if you have somewhere in mind let us know.
  5. Other mandatory requirements (confirmation that these have been met), this will include topics such as work-readiness skills and other occupational specific requirements.

 

Overall you will receive a grade of Distinction*, Distinction, Merit, Pass (C or above on core component), or Pass (D or E on core component).

What can you do after a T Level?

A T Level is equivalent to 3 A Levels and students who complete their T Level will earn UCAS points – currently, the maximum for 3 A*s is 168 UCAS points.

T Levels will help to prepare students to enter work with good technical skills and knowledge, or go on to to higher education if they wish to. As with all course options, students should check universities’ or colleges’ entry requirements for higher education courses. 

T Level overall gradeEquivalent A Level gradeUCAS points
Distinction*A*A*A*168
DistinctionAAA144
MeritBBB120
Pass (C or above on core component)CCC96
Pass (D or E on core component)DDD72

How are T Levels different from an apprenticeship?

T Levels involve more classroom study than apprenticeships. With a T Level you spend about 20% of your time in the workplace and 80% in college; whilst with an apprenticeship, you spend 20% of your time in college and 80% in the workplace.  

Like A Levels, there are no tuition fees to study a T Level if you start before you are 19.  

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