What are Functional Skills?

Functional skills are the fundamental Math, English, and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) skills that people need in their working and personal lives. These skills provide reliable proof of a student’s accomplishments for the demanding content that is relevant to the workplace. These qualifications assess learners’ knowledge of the subject and their ability to apply this knowledge in different contexts (work and personal). These subjects provide a foundation for employment and further technical education. Also, these skills prepare the learner for everyday life. Functional skills qualifications are based on Department for Education (DfE)-approved subject content and are regulated by Ofqual. Learners will work towards their qualification in a number of settings, including but not limited to:

  • Schools and sixth-form colleges
  • Pupil Referral Units
  • Further education providers
  • Private colleges
  • Private skill providers
  • Offender learning establishments
  • Higher education establishments

Functional Skills Level:

  • These qualifications are available at Entry 1, Entry 2, Entry 3, Level 1, and Level 2. In comparison, Entry Level 1–3 is below GCSE Level, whereas Level 1 is comparable to GCSE Grades 1–3, and Level 2 is comparable to GCSE Grade 4.

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