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I am interested in full time courses

Full Time Courses

On island

Full time courses available to adults in Guernsey are currently only offered by the College of Further Education, although there are early plans for some private providers to offer full time courses at degree level. Courses offered by the College of Further Education are vocational qualifications (job related) and cover a wide range of levels and difficulty. Occasionally, the Sixth Form Centre admit younger adults on to full time A level programmes but this is quite rare. Before looking at courses in more depth, it's a good idea to familiarise yourself with the different levels and what each qualification is worth or equivalent to.

The chart here will help explain what the levels are: pdf icon Qualifications Explained [455kb]

At the moment it is only possible to study courses full time up to and including Level 3 (usually BTEC Diplomas) but there are a range of subjects on offer including ICT, Health, Business and Sport.  

You can check the full range of courses on offer at the Guernsey College of FE website.

Although Guernsey College of Further Education has a good range of full time courses for an island population, it cannot offer everything and full time courses do not go beyond Level 3. If you wish to study something that is not offered, you may need to look at going off island to find the course you want.

Off Island

Each year there are approximately 800 Guernsey students studying off island. Although most students will attend university straight after Sixth Form or College, some will choose to take up their studies later into adulthood. There are facilities to support mature students in off island study providing certain criteria is met. Financial support is usually only given to courses at Level 4 and above but there are some exceptions. Check the study costs part of the adult section for full details.

If you are considering self-funding full time study off island, you need to be careful as to the quality and the value of the course you are looking at. This is particularly important if you are looking at 'fast track' courses which claim to give the equivalence of usually longer courses. A Careers Adviser at Careers Guernsey will be happy to meet with you to guide you through the process of choosing a reputable course. Contact Us Here  to arrange a meeting if you'd like to discuss this.

I am interested in part time courses

Part Time Courses

On Island

There are many part time courses available on island, from basic skills through to post-graduate degrees.

The College of Further Education has a range of part time courses and workshops and also runs a busy Adult Education programme with study taking place in the daytime and evenings. The Flexible Learning Centre focuses on IT skills and Secretarial training, whilst the Guernsey Business School branch of the college offers courses related to finance and business.

You can check the range of their courses here College of FE website

The Guernsey Training Agency (GTA) provides seminars, short courses in advanced training and Higher Education on a part time basis.

See the GTA website for details of all courses on offer.

There are other private providers of part time courses on the island.

See pdf icon Local Course Providers [513kb] for details of some of these and what they offer. Course provision will change year by year, so check with providers directly for the most up to date information.

Work Based Learning

For some part time courses, there is a need to be directly involved in the work the course relates to as theory needs to be applied to practice. Courses include the apprenticeship scheme, those offerd by the Institute of Health, (mainly Nursing and Social Work) on island post-graduate teacher training, plus some other courses offered by the GTA and private providers.

Check the Institute of Health and Social Care website for more details

I am interested in distance learning

Distance/Online Learning

This is a way of study that appeals to many people. There are many advantages to this, the main one being the ability to study at a time and pace that suits whilst being able to work and earn. It is possible to study from quite basic levels through to post-graduate courses.

Begin by looking at the pdf icon Qualifications Explained [455kb] leaflet which should help to clarify how qualifications are valued.

Finding a course

Finding a suitable course can be difficult. Although there are many valid courses available online, there is also a significant number that have no real worth, or even worse are a con. 

Before you part with any money for distance learning courses, consider the following;

- Who validates or accredits the course?- Ideally this should be a body unattached to the provider, although if you are studying purely for leisure this may not matter.

- What is the qualification worth and who says so? Check if the qualification is on the Ofqual Register of Qualifications. If it is, you should be told exactly how many credits this is and at what level.

- How long has the institution been in business?

- What sort of support will you get during the course? How is this support given?

- Is the course subject something that can really be studied online or through distance learning? You may be able to study some practical theory online, but it is unlikely to be enough on its own.

If you are at all unsure about choosing a course, please Contact a Careers Adviser for help with this.

Funding

At present, the only distance learning courses where funding is available are those through the Open University. Support is calculated through an income based means test and there are other conditions to this. Please see Student Funding  for more details.

Providers

Some of the best known providers of distance/online courses are listed below.

For GCSEs, A Levels and certain vocational courses, try National Extension College or ICS Distance Learning as a starting point.

For Higher Education, the Open University is probably the best established provider and you may be able to get funding for these courses.

The Open College of the Arts offers a similar service to the Open University but concentrates on Creative Arts courses.

What help can I get with study costs?

Student Funding

Financial support for Guernsey students comes in the form of a means tested Grants system. It is possible to get funding for courses at many different levels, for on island, off island and part time or full time. There is a set of criteria that must be met in order to get funding- this includes household income,but there are rules around your age, type and level of study and other personal circumstances. A full description of the rules and application process can be found at Student Funding