What comes after school?
We've produced this guide so that you have the information you need about the options open to your child.
College or University
Colleges offer a wide range of courses, from National Qualifications and Access courses, right through to HNC/D and degrees. They’re often more vocational than a university course.
College can help your child prepare for the world of work, or act as a stepping stone to university. Nowadays, there are lots of progression routes between the two.
University means studying towards a degree, normally for four years. A university course can be more academic, or have a vocational element.
Where to find out more
- College and university is full of information about what your child can expect from each, the links between the two and advice to help them decide what kind of course would suit them
- The learn and train search lets them explore thousands of courses across Scotland
- College and university websites are an important source of information. Your child can learn not just about the course, but what the wider faculty is like and what resources are available for students
- Attending an event, like a Higher Education convention, Skills Scotland, or college or university open days, gives your child a chance to meet people and hear first hand about different courses. This helps them decide if it’s right for them
- When they’re ready to apply, applying for courses has advice on UCAS and college application forms, interviews and personal statements
Because they combine a real job with training, Modern Apprenticeships are a great way for your child to learn on the job. They’re different to full-time study and instead give your child the room to develop as they work.
Where to find out more
- We answer the big questions parents have about Modern Apprenticeships
- Modern Apprenticeships gives your child the information they need about what to expect
- Your child can find our about types of Modern Apprenticeship which might suit them through My career options
- Apprenticeships.Scot has more information and the latest vacancies. Your child can apply for an MA through the quick, simple online form
While a course or a Modern Apprenticeship will lead them into a job, your child might want to go straight into the workforce.
If so, depending on the employer there may still be opportunities to train on the job and work their way up. It’s worth discussing this with their child as they consider where they want to apply.
Starting a business
It can be tough to get a foot in the door, so gaining some work experience can help. As well as giving your child an insight to working life, it also helps them build connections. Find out more about work experience.
Certificate of Work Readiness
The Certificate of Work Readiness helps your child build up the type of work experience employers are looking for. They’ll get a recognised qualification for their CV. And, it can lead on to other opportunities such as Modern Apprenticeships.
Volunteering gives young people the chance to develop vocational skills, and boost their CV. It can also be a way of making new contacts.
The National Parent Forum of Scotland has developed a guide to learning pathways. This could help you understand more about some of the options open to your child.