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16-18 Study Programmes at Wirral Met College

All 16-18 year old students, and students aged 19-24 who have a Learning Difficulty Assessment or an Education Health and Care Plan at Wirral Met College, have the opportunity to undertake high quality and challenging study programmes tailored to meet their individual needs and career ambitions.

Main Qualification

You will spend most of your time studying one main qualification in your chosen subject area, or participating in a traineeship. In addition, your study programme will also include the following:

Improvement in Maths and English

If you have not yet achieved a grade 9-4 or A*-C GCSE maths and/or English, you will continue to study these subjects at college. Depending on your grade, you will work towards GCSE and/or Functional Skills maths and English. As part of your study programme you will have dedicated maths and English tutors, who will help you to develop the skills you need to be successful in the workplace. They will work with you to help you to develop maths and English for your chosen career.

Work Skills and Experience

You will have the opportunity to undertake high quality meaningful work experience and/or skills development. Preparing you for the workplace it a vital component of our study programmes, and we recognise the importance of work experience in suitable and relevant placements. You will also take part in Enterprise activities including Enterprise challenges and clubs.


You will have a personal tutor to work with you and to ensure you have a positive experience at the college. Your personal tutor will help you with your study or personal issues, and liaise with other staff regarding your academic process, supporting you to achieve all aspects of the programme.

Non-study activities

You will have the opportunity to take part in a range of activities such as voluntary work, fund raising, charity work, sports and trips.

16-24 Traineeships

Traineeships are designed to help young people, gain the necessary work skills and experience to progress to an apprenticeship or job. They are a partnership between the employer and the college and involve high quality work experience, a period of work preparation training (developing interpersonal skills, CVs, job search and interview skills), and English and maths.

You will be eligible if you:

  • are unemployed or in a job working less than 16 hours and have limited work experience
  • are aged 16-18 and qualified below level 3, or aged 19-24 and have not yet achieved a full level 3 qualification
  • your college and employer/placement provider believe you have a reasonable chance of being ready for employment or an apprenticeship within six months of starting your traineeship.


An apprenticeship is a job with training that develops your skills and knowledge, whilst you earn.

  • You will be employed by a company, get paid from the day you start and you can earn at least £100 per week.
  • We offer over 100 apprenticeships across a variety of sectors, ranging from Accountancy, Engineering and Healthcare Support to Marketing, Science and Retail.

Apprenticeships are available at level 2 (previously called intermediate apprenticeships - they equate to 5 good GCSEs), level 3 (previously called advanced apprenticeships - they equate to 2 A Level qualifications) and level 4 or above (previously called higher apprenticeships which can include a Higher Education qualification). Level 4 and 5 apprenticeships are an alternative option to going to university. If this is for you, contact us to find out how you can become an apprentice. Please note, if you want to become an apprentice, you must apply for an apprenticeship job opportunity rather than apply to college. 

Which level should I start at?

Wirral Met College has a place for every student, regardless of your starting point and chosen career path. You don’t need to apply for a specific Level. You choose your career route and we will ensure you join the most appropriate level for you.

As a guide, the likely starting points are set out below.

Current qualifications you have: Likely starting point at college:
No GCSEs Entry Level 1, 2 or 3, Traineeships, Apprenticeships or Progression into Further Education courses
Just a few GCSEs at grade 3/2 (formerly grade E) Level 1 study programmes
  • NVQ Level 1
  • BTEC Certificate/Award
  • Traineeships
  • Apprenticeships
  • Progression into Further Education
  • Prince’s Trust programmes
3 GCSEs at grades 9-3 (formerly A*-D) Level 2 study programmes
  • NVQ Level 2
  • BTEC Certificate/Diploma
  • Traineeships
  • Level 2 Apprenticeships
  • Pre-Access (19+)
  • Prince’s Trust programmes
4-5 GCSEs at grades 9-4 (formerly A*-C), Level 2 Apprenticeship Level 3 study programmes
  • NVQ Level 3
  • BTEC Certificate/Diploma
  • Level 3 Apprenticeship
  • Access to Higher Education (19+)
A Level, AS Level, BTEC Extended Diploma, NVQ Level 3, Level 3 Apprenticeship Level 4, 5 & 6 courses/apprenticeships
  • Levels 4,5, 6 Higher National Certificate/Diploma (HNC/D)
  • Level 4/5 Higher Apprenticeship
  • Foundation Degree (FD)
  • Bachelor Degree (BA/BSc)
  • Professional Qualifications


This is only a guide to the different qualifications at each level and we may offer other qualifications to suit your needs. To discuss your options with our Student Advisers, call into our ‘drop in’ Advice service at our Conway Park Campus.

You can also take a look at the National Careers Service website for careers information – visit

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