Post-16 Options

There are many different routes now available after students complete their GCSEs and leave secondary school. Below is a summary of each of the available qualifications and options available to students, as well as some local providers of further education and their contact details: 

Click Here to View the Surrey County Council Post 16 Route Planner Document


Post-16 options (qualifications, apprenticeships and traineeships):

  • A-Levels 

A-Levels are a traditionally academic route, they require a lot of independent study, reading, essay writing and revision.  A-levels keep options open and are the usual route into university or higher (degree level) apprenticeships. It is important to make sure that the choice of A-levels is ‘fit for purpose'.  Doing some research for which A-levels are needed for university courses is important as there are some degrees and university courses which require you to have very specific A levels.  

  • Apprenticeships 

Apprenticeships combine practical training in a job whilst also studying part time. They are often paid, so offer the opportunity to learn while earning a wage. Apprentices have the opportunity to work alongside experienced staff and gain skills unique to the workplace, as well as an increasingly well-respected qualification. They are often completed over a period of one to four years. 

  • BTec 

A BTec is a vocational qualification, which means that it has a career focus and is centred around the world of work. Students would study to gain skills and knowledge in their subject area, putting those skills into practice in real-life situations. 

  • Higher National Diplomas 

Higher National Diplomas (HND) aim to provide more options for practical learning, this means they are less classroom-based than more traditional A-levels, and have been designed to encourage more young people to continue studying. They are ideal for those who are aiming to work in a specific and specialist industry. 

  • A National Vocational Qualification (Level 1, 2 or 3) 

A National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) is a work-based way of learning, it is carried out at a college, school, or sometimes workplace. Each NVQ level involves a range of on-the-job tasks and activities that are designed to test you on your ability to do a job effectively and ultimately qualify you for that role. 

  • T-Levels 

T Levels are equivalent to 3 A levels, they run over 2 years with the intention to deliver content that meets the needs of the industry and prepares students for work, further training, or study. They offer students a mixture of classroom learning and ‘on-the-job’ experience by providing an industry placement while on the course. 

  • Traineeship 

Traineeships are skills development programmes that include work placements. They can last from 6 weeks up to a 1 year, most traineeships last for less than 6 months, followed by employment at the end. 

Local colleges and sixth forms

  • Brooklands College (Weybridge Campus)  

Offers a wide range of vocational and apprenticeship courses to suit any starting point or qualification. 

  • Heathside Sixth Form 

Offers a range of A-Level courses. 

  • St Pauls Catholic College Sixth Form 

Offers a range of A-Levels and BTec courses. 

  • Brooklands College (Ashford Campus) 

Offers a wide range of vocational and apprenticeship courses to suit any starting point or qualification. 

  • Woking College  

Offers a wide range of A-Level and vocational courses.  

  • Esher College 

Offers a range of A-Level and BTec courses.  

  • Kingston College  

Offers a wide range of BTec, vocational and apprenticeship courses as well as some GCSEs and functional skills courses. 

  • Guildford College

Guildford College (

Offers a range of A-Levels, BTecs and apprenticeships.  

  • Richmond College  

Offers A-Levels a range of vocational and technical qualifications and apprenticeships with excellent transport links. 

  • Merrist Wood

Merrist Wood College (

Offers a range of vocational studies to suit learners of all starting points, with a focus on horticultural studies.  


Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now