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Proposals launched to boost the quality and uptake of Higher Technical Qualifications

July 13, 2019

We are revamping Level 4 and 5 qualifications – that sit between A Levels (Level 3) and degrees (Level 6) – to improve their quality and recognition, leading to more opportunities for young people and a more highly skilled workforce for employers.

There are over 4,000 Level 4 and 5 qualifications available but over 40 per cent of these only have 5 students or even fewer on them. Clearly that’s no good - too varied in terms of quality and hard for employers to understand the value. It needs simplifying to ensure that people get the benefit from the time and money they spend on qualifying. 

Research has found that students who gain these qualifications in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects can earn up to £5,000 more a year than people with degrees from many universities and the CBI has predicted that in five years’ time almost half of all jobs will be in management, professional and technical roles – boosting demand for the specialist skills that Higher Technical Qualifications provide.

Employers are crying out for more computer programmers, engineers, electricians and technicians in fields from advanced manufacturing to healthcare. We are ensuring that technical education options are clear and high quality so more young people are able to take advantage of these opportunities.


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