Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Improving your career through learning

Learning doesn't end when you leave school or college: people go on learning throughout their lives, for work and leisure. Whether you are looking for a job or planning a career change, new skills and qualifications can help you get more of life and work. You can:

think about what you need to learn
find out more about qualifications at all levels
look for a course in your area
find out about learning at work, at home and elsewhere
sign up to store all the information you find and keep track of your learning

Why learn?

People never stop learning. Whether you are doing a course, in work, or volunteering, you are increasing your skills and your confidence. The more skills you have, the better your chances of finding the right job and getting more out of life. Open a Lifelong Learning Account and you will be able to keep track of all the study you do.

Getting a qualification

A qualification is proof that you have knowledge or a skill in a certain area. Qualifications aren’t the only way to show your skills: work experience or volunteering are other ways of showing what you can do. But qualifications are a good way to let an employer see what skills and knowledge you have. Don’t worry if you haven’t studied for a while. Many people return to learning after a break, and really enjoy the experience. You can study in a variety of different ways now, including at home.

Returning to learning
Flexible open learning and home study
Beginning with the basics

You may have left school without qualifications and have worries about your maths and English. You might think your IT skills need some updating. Getting more confident about the basics is a great way to start improving your skills. There are many courses to choose from, in colleges, learning centres and libraries. Another good way to begin is through a leisure course, in a subject you enjoy, such as photography, cookery or crafts.

Learning for leisure
Improving your reading, writing and numbers
Improving your computer skills

Which qualification?

There are many opportunities for gaining a qualification at different levels. Some are work-based, others concentrate on a particular subject. Levels range from basic qualifications to university degrees and diplomas. You need to think about where you would like to go in your career and what qualifications you need to get there.

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