What to do after GCSEs? Here's three of the top options

A-levels still remain the traditional educational route after GCSEs for many - but they're not the only option.

Monday, 20th August 2018, 2:59 pm
Updated Friday, 7th September 2018, 4:37 pm
Students celebrate GCSE results last year

More students are turning towards apprenticeships and vocational qualifications as alternatives.

Teenagers picking up their GCSEs on Thursday (August 23) have already been in education for the best part of 12 years.

But these days, teenagers up to the age of 18, are legally required to stay in education, training or get a job with accredited training.

Ruth Sparkes, editor of teen careers and education magazine Future Mag, said: “Being in further education or training doesn’t mean teenagers have to stay in the same school. There are lots of options.”

So, for students who didn’t get the GCSEs they were hoping for, or already have a particular career in mind, or just don’t find the prospect of another two years studying A-levels appealing, here are three options for life after GCSEs.

1: Apprenticeship.

There are lots of apprenticeship opportunities out there and organisations who can help and offer you the right information. Check out UCAS’s website which explains all about apprenticeships. Some firms even offer the chance to be paid while gaining an apprenticeship.

2. Traineeship.

Not quite ready for an apprenticeship? Need to work on your skills? Don’t worry there are lots of opportunities for you to complete a traineeship.

3. Go to your local college.

There are two types of college – 6th form college and further education college. 6th form colleges are mostly geared up for students aged between 16 and 18, and tend to concentrate on academic education.

Further education colleges are generally much bigger than 6th form colleges and offer a wider range of subjects, including vocational education (BTECs and NVQs), and they’re not just for teenagers.

Further education colleges offer adult education and degree courses too.

The GOV.UK website can help you find more information about courses offered by schools and colleges in your area if you’re aged between 14-19.