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English Basic Skills

Summary

What can I use functional skills for?

Education and Employment Functional skills can help you access further and higher education courses e.g. engineering or paramedic etc. If you don't have GCSEs, functional skills will meet the minimum essential criteria required for most job applications. Everyday Life Functional skills equip you with the basic skills needed to take control of your life with confidence, from handling money, to formal documents. During the pandemic, functional skills has given parents extra confidence to help children with homework too.

What is functional skills English?

Functional skills qualifications are equivalent to GCSEs up to a grade C (or current grade 4). As an equivalent qualification, functional skills are recognised by employers across all industries and learning institutes, such as universities. At Seasiders Learning Centre for adults (19+), functional skills courses run all year round, meaning you can start at any time during the academic year. Courses are part-time with different modes of attendance available to fit around work and busy schedules. Although most courses run for 18 weeks, attendance can be as little as once a week for a couple of hours, and it is possible to complete your course earlier based on your progress!

Next course dates

Start date Location Duration
01 Aug 2023
Seasiders and Fleetwood Learning Centre
01 Aug 2024
Seasiders and Fleetwood Learning Centre

What can I use functional skills for?

Education & Employment

Functional skills can help you access further and higher education courses e.g. engineering or paramedic etc. If you don't have GCSE's, functional skills will meet the minimum essential criteria required for most job applications.

Everyday Life

Functional skills equip you with the basic skills needed to take control of your life with confidence, from handling money, to formal documents. During the pandemic, functional skills has given parents extra confidence to help children with homework too.

What is functional skills English?

Functional skills qualifications are equivalent to GCSE's up to a grade 'C' (or current grade '4'). As an equivalent qualification, functional skills are recognised by employers across all industries and learning institutes, such as universities.

At Seasiders Learning Centre for adults (19+), functional skills courses run all year round, meaning you can start at any time during the academic year. Courses are part-time with different modes of attendance available to fit around work and busy schedules. Although most courses run for 18 weeks, attendance can be as little as once a week for a couple of hours, and it is possible to complete your course earlier based on your progress!

Book an Appointment

Initial Advice and Guidance appointments (IAG) are designed to assess student current capabilities, discuss learning needs, options available, complete any enrolment paperwork, and assign classes and/or start dates.

These appointments are important to ensure we get every learner on to the right level of study and can help every learner to succeed.

Questions? - you can call us on 01253 504693 to make an appointment or book online here

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Where can this subject lead?

Career progression

Functional Skills English (Level 2) will enable you to access more employment and education opportunities.

It will enable you to apply for courses needed to progress within a particular industry e.g. as a paramedic, as an engineer, in retail and hospitality etc. The list is endless!

If you already have the industry skills but lack the basic skills, Functional Skills English will put you on an even footing with other job applicants and meets the requirements of most job applications. We would also recommend Functional Skills Maths too!

Functional Skills English proves to an employer or university that you know how to communicate effectively. Whether it's writing a report for work, or an essay for your course.

Functional skills English gives you the confidence and competency to reach for and achieve your goals.

Key information

Entry Requirements

There are no previous qualifications required to undertake this course, so functional skills are ideal for everybody. Functional skills can help you regain the skills you need as an adult to achieve your goals, both in your career and personal life.

I have a very busy lifestyle, how can I fit in time for learning?

With different modes of attendance available, there are different learning options available to fit around your busy schedule. From classroom-based learning and evening classes, to flexible online distance learning.

No previous qualifications or outdated qualifications?

Whether you didn't achieve the grades you were expecting at school, or it's been a while since you have been to school or studied, functional skills bridges the skills gap and sets you on your way to achieving your goals by increasing access to more opportunities. Functional skills are also ideal for adults who don't hold a UK recognised qualification.

Terms and conditions

Read our full terms and conditions for more information.

Tuition Fees, Costs and Equipment

Provided you have not achieved a level higher than the one you want to apply for, Functional Skills English courses are FREE.

Tuition fees would apply to anybody not eligible for funding.  The finance team can provide you with further guidance regarding course fees.

Extra costs from equipment are minimal with an expectation of pen, paper, dictionary, and folder.  You will be provided with a free text book and resources.

Financial Support

Financial support is available for eligible students on low incomes.  You will need to provide evidence to support your claim.  For most financial support, your annual HOUSEHOLD income is considered and needs to be below the threshold (currently £25,000)

  • BURSARY - Visit the finance page to see if you are eligible for a bursary (up to £60 per month) to help with learning costs
  • FREE BUS PASS - You may even be eligible for a free bus pass - terms and conditions apply
  • FREE healthy breakfast - available to all students at Seasiders
  • FREE meals*

*FREE meal vouchers are exclusive to eligible students on low household incomes attending Seasiders Learning Centre.  Catering facilities at Seasiders are limited to vending drinks and snacks so, if you are eligible you will receive a meal voucher once every two weeks to spend at your local supermarket.  The voucher helps with the cost of lunch on the days you attend college.

See the attached documents for more details, or contact our admin team on 01253 504224 or Seasiders staff to check your eligibility and find out how to apply.

Tuition Fees & Financial Support
Visit our finance page for more details about adult learner tuition fees and other financial support for 19+ learners. To qualify for financial support, you will need to provide evidence of household income, such as Universal Credit statements or a P60. Click here for more details or telephone the contact number for advice.

Learning Support

Learning support can be offered to learners who are eligible.  If you feel you may need additional learning support or want to find out if you may be eligible visit our student support page for more information. 

Learning Support
Explore our student support pages for more information on learning support.

What will I learn?

What will I learn?

Reading and Writing

You will learn how to improve your writing skills, make sense of language and texts, and recognise their use both formally and informally to communicate more effectively. You will learn how to improve your spelling, use of punctuation, and grammar.

Speaking, Listening and Communicating

You will learn how to communicate more effectively and present arguments for discussion to develop sound ideas and opinions.

Learning and Teaching Methods

The course is delivered over 18 weeks, where learners will take part in regular weekly sessions using a variety of different teaching methods such as written tasks, discussion and quizzes.

Classroom-based sessions are two hours a week (four hours on our fast-track sessions) and will have addition of homework or online learning each week for normally 1-2 hours.

Towards the end of the course, you may get a practice exam to complete to help prepare you for the final assessment.

What will I learn?

Depending on your individual level of study, the complexity of the content will increase as your level of learning increases.  The basic principles of reading, writing and communicating are built on as your level increases.

The basis of functional skills English is to give you the competency and confidence to apply the skills you learn at work, and in your every day life from writing texts, letters, emails and filling in forms, to discussing complex issues with confidence to communicate effectively with friends, family and work colleagues.

What books do I need?
All we ask is that you come prepared to learn with the basics. You will need a pen, some paper and maybe a folder to keep everything in; a dictionary would also be very useful. As part of your course, you will be supplied with a textbook appropriate to your level, which you can keep at the end of the course.

Functional Skills English topics include:

Speaking, Listening and Communicating - Following instructions and extract relevant information from text.  Use appropriate language and terms to respond to others and ask questions.  Communicate facts and opinions effectively and by contributing and participating in discussions.

Reading - Reading and understanding text.

Writing - correct use of punctuation, spelling, and grammar to compose written phrases and sentences.

Qualification
If you would like to know more about the course content you can visit the curriculum website for Functional Skills English. Functional Skills English is externally assessed and accredited by the awarding body.

I want to progress quickly, can I do this?

It's not uncommon for learners to approach us with urgency; for example, requiring a Level 2 by September enabling individuals to enrol on to other courses.  Your tutor can support your progress by offering suitable resources for learning, but a quick result will depend on the extra time and effort needed to achieve your goals. Our academic year ends at the end of July and starts again fully in September so we would strongly encourage you to apply early to avoid disappointment.

Questions?
Contact a member of the Seasiders team, who can advise you on the best route to achieve your goals.

Meet The Team

Our English specialist teaching team are here to help you achieve your goals.

How will I be assessed?

How will I be assessed?

During the course you will be assessed on Reading, Writing, and Speaking, Listening and Communication. 

Speaking, Listening and Communication is assessed during the course by your tutor.

At the end of the course you will complete a Reading and Writing examination.

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