WHAT IS A VOCATIONAL COURSE?
In vocational courses everything you learn is directly related to your chosen career. The course, which may include work experience, will give you the opportunity to work on tasks as a member of a team. Your results are based much more on your coursework than on any examinations that you take. Employers, colleges and universities recognise vocational
courses to be equivalent to academic courses.
Will a vocational course suit you?
- Yes, if one or more of the following statements apply to you:
- You are reasonably certain of the career area that you wish to enter
- You enjoy applying your knowledge and solving problems
- You prefer coursework to examinations
- You want to concentrate on your favourite subject area
- You want some work experience in your course
- You enjoy working as part of a team
WHAT ARE BTEC QUALIFICATIONS?
BTEC qualifications are suitable for a wide range of learners. They encourage and recognise achievement in learners, some of whom may not be getting the most out of ‘traditional’ academic study. Those who enjoy hands on, practical work with plenty of real life situations tend to find stimulation and success through BTEC qualifications.
Qualification Equivalent to
Entry Level BTEC Diploma Variable GCSE equivalent
Level 1 BTEC Diploma Variable GCSE equivalent
Level 2 BTEC Diploma 4 GCSEs A* – C
Level 3 BTEC Subsidiary Diploma 1 A Level
Level 3 BTEC Diploma 2 A Levels *
Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma 3 A Levels *
*Level 3 BTEC Diplomas qualify for UCAS points
CAN I HAVE ADDITIONAL SUPPORT?
The College places a strong emphasis on support for learning. All new fulltime students have an initial screening assessment, which helps gauge if learning support is required. We can then work with you and your tutors to devise a programme that is tailor-made to your needs.
Our support can be provided in various ways. It can be done one to one, in class or via small groups. If specific support has already been identified by an outside agency we would normally try and ensure that it can be continued in much the same way. Learning support is normally available at every level of study.
HOW IMPORTANT IS ENGLISH AND MATHS?
Low skills levels in English and Maths have a profound effect on individuals, their families, on the economy and on society. The College offers support for its students to enable them to develop their English and Maths skills so that their everyday use of literacy and numeracy is a source of pride and not one of embarrassment. Every student will be enrolled on either a GCSE or Functional Skills programme of study if they have not already gained a grade C pass at GCSE.
AM I GUARANTEED A PLACE?
Having the correct entry criteria is not the only requirement for acceptance onto a course. You will need to be successful at interview and references will be taken up. You will also need to demonstrate a record of satisfactory attendance and participation.
Due to the large number of applicants each year courses may become oversubscribed and places may not be available on your first choice course. We may have to place you on a waiting list. This does not, however, guarantee a place so you are advised to look at alternative courses at this time. We make every effort to place applicants on the course of their choice – so long as it is appropriate to their skills and ability.
Occasionally courses may have to be cancelled and the College will do its best to suggest suitable alternatives.
INITIAL CONTACT WITH PROSPECTIVE STUDENTS
We work closely with all the Jersey schools by visiting pupils in years 10 and 11. We also arrange whole year group visits and open nights for parents and pupils. We produce course information sheets, prospectuses and the schools’ Careers staff visit the College as a group or independently in order to keep informed about new developments.
We do all of this to raise the awareness of applicants and their parents of the courses we offer, links to local and national employment and going on to Higher Education.
THE APPLICATION PROCESS
The first step in the application process is for prospective students to submit an application form for the programme of study in which they are interested. Prospective students can apply for more than one course.
For schools’ pupils the completion and submission of application forms is organised through their school’s Careers Teacher.
Mature students can contact Student Services on 01534 608 654 for more information.
Most courses have entry requirements. Normally these requirements are necessary but not sufficient or the sole conditions of entry. Possession of these requirements does not guarantee a place as places may be limited and so an early application is recommended. Late applicants may have a reduced number of programmes of study to choose from.
By various means the College and its staff try to ensure that all relevant information about the programmes is made available to prospective students well before an application is made, including any specific entry requirements that may apply. This can be via careers staff in schools, school visits, our prospectus, leaflets explaining the programmes in detail etc.
When the College receives an application an interview is arranged with the appropriate specialist tutors as soon as possible.
Applicants will be given interviews for their 1st and 2nd choice of course. Should students wish to be interviewed for a further course this should be discussed with their Careers Teacher or directly with Student Services.
CAN I STUDY FOR A DEGREE?
Yes, over 150 students are currently working towards a degree programme at Highlands. Since 2004 Highlands College has been officially recognised as a Partner College of the University of Plymouth, giving us official status within the university with our own Board of Studies.
We currently offer:
Foundation Degree in Accounting and Finance
Foundation Degree in Art and Design
Foundation Degree in Business and Management
Foundation Degree in Childhood Studies
Foundation Degree in Financial Services
Foundation Degree in Information Technology for Business
BSc (Honours) Architectural Technology
BSc (Honours) Construction Management
BA (Honours) in Financial Services
BSc (Honours) in Social Sciences
Masters in Business Administration (MBA) programme
MSc in Human Resource Management
We also offer the Open College Network validated Access to Higher Education Certificate for adults who need a qualification to enter higher education. This can lead to an on-Island degree course, Plymouth or other universities in the UK or Open University qualifications on Island.
The mission of the University of Plymouth Partner Colleges is to provide “a degree on your doorstep” and at Highlands College we have worked hard to make this a reality.