Frequently Asked Questions
Functional Skills are recognised GCSE alternative qualifications, with a Level 2 being equivalent to a GCSE grade 4 (C). Functional Skills are skills-based qualifications. They offer students the skills to use English and maths in everyday situations. GCSEs, on the other hand, are academic qualifications and give learners a strong theoretical knowledge base and skillset. This affects the depth of the syllabus taught and the materials you will need to study.
You can also watch this video to hear from one of our tutors about the differences.
Functional Skills is the perfect qualification for you if you didn’t achieve the GCSEs you wanted when you were younger, but now wish to develop essential life skills. They can benefit you professionally as well as personally. They are respected by employers and can help boost your employability. They can even set the foundation for further study too.
As soon as a place becomes available on a new course, we will contact you with the start date. We do not have term dates so courses can start at any time, dependent on the availability of tutors and sufficient learner numbers.
The course is delivered online through Google Meet and Google Classroom so you will need a device, ideally a laptop or PC, with a camera and microphone. You will be given a personal Google account to access Google Classroom, which is accessible from anywhere, easy to use and improves the remote learning experience. When your course start date is confirmed and in your first taught session, you will also receive a tutorial on how you use the different processes involved in Google Classroom, so do not worry if you have not used it before.
To be eligible for this course to be fully funded you must be:
- Employed or unemployed
There may be some restrictions based on your home postcode, but we can direct you to another provider if this is the case.
You also need to be a UK national, other person with right of abode or an EEA national in the UK, who has been resident for at least the previous three years.
You will also need to complete a brief initial assessment to ensure that the course you are wishing to join is appropriate for your abilities.
The English course is 13 weeks with one practical assessment during the course and exams at the end.
The maths course is 15 weeks with the exams at the end.
The length of both courses can be altered if both learner and tutor feel it is necessary to do so.
We ask that you attend at least 75% of all sessions. All the sessions are recorded and are posted on the classroom with other resources used in the sessions, so if you do happen to miss a session, you can always catch up. The recordings and resources are also invaluable resources for revision.
There is no cost to the learner for this course, provided they do not have an existing Functional Skills or GCSE or equivalent qualification at the level of the course they are taking. This also includes people who cannot provide evidence, and where there is no record of, qualifications they’ve previously done.
You will be given the contact details of your tutor, who will be able to answer any questions relating to the course material. They will also be able to organise 1 to 1 sessions if you are struggling or would like further explanation of a particular topic.
Yes. We can support you with weekly 1 to 1 sessions with a tutor where the learning and pace can be tailored to your requirements. You can ask questions without feeling uncomfortable and focus on your specific problem areas.
We offer courses that run in the evening as well as the daytime, so the course can be fitted in around your working hours.
You book your exam with your tutor, who will first assess whether you are ready to take the exam and then make the arrangements with you.
There are several choices available:
- you can sit your exams at WBTC or
- you can take the exams remotely in your home or workplace.
You will receive your results two to three weeks after you sit the exams and then the certificate will be sent to you three or four weeks after that.
Like employers, many UK universities now accept Functional Skills instead of GCSEs. However, this is entirely dependent on the individual university and their set entry requirements for each degree programme. If you have a Level 2 qualification in English and/or maths, you can apply for an Access to Higher Education Diploma. This will enable you to take your studies to the next level, unlock access to higher education and go to university without A-levels.
Yes, this course can help boost your employability as many employers are now looking for candidates with Level 2 maths and English qualifications. Functional Skills are well-recognised by employers across the UK and are widely accepted in place of GCSEs. Employers are also encouraging existing employees to up-skill themselves to benefit their current role or to provide the first step to promotion. Taking a functional skills course demonstrates that you can work independently, solve problems, apply your knowledge to real-life situations and are equipped with the skills to succeed in a workplace.