How does College differ from Sixth form? Can I work around my studies? Will college lead me to University? What is best for my studies? Just some of the many questions asked at our open days, campus tours and roadshows. Making the decision to stay on at school, or join a college can feel like a big one, but this guide should help you feel capable when it comes to deciding your next step.
Let’s start with the options you have after GCSEs- Sixth Form, College and Apprenticeships.
1. Sixth Form
Sixth form is one option, and the idea of staying in a familiar setting to continue your education can be comforting. Your school may not have a sixth form offering, but you can transfer to a school that does. Most will focus on teaching AS/A levels, although some do now teach BTEC qualifications.
is for anyone over 16, meaning you could be studying with people of all ages, with different backgrounds and life experiences. This could help you in your studies as well as personal development. The courses are usually more varied offering more vocational subjects such as Beauty, Construction, Legal Secretarial and Public Services (to name a few!), and can help you go straight into a job afterwards. All North Kent College courses provide enough points to enable progression onto University if preferred. Although you will be expected to stick to a timetable, you may not have to stay in college during free periods and will be given a lot more independence.
can offer you the chance to leave school at 16 and go straight into work, so you can earn whilst you learn. You’ll gain valuable skills to start your career, both on the job and from trained professionals in the workplace. It helps improve your employability, and makes you an ideal candidate for employers when they’re looking for skilled staff. Apprenticeships normally involve a day release to college to achieve your qualification; however, some companies give you the training required, within the workplace. By the end of the apprenticeship, you will have a nationally recognised qualification, as well as achieving a big step on the career ladder.
North Kent College are here to help, no matter what decision you end up making. We have careers advisors on hand to help if you are unsure what route to take, and our careers explorer tool helps you see the path you could follow to get the job you want. Take a look at our courses
and we might see you in September!
If you are still unsure of what do in September, then come along to our GCSE Results Open Day
on Friday 25th August and Get Sorted!