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What are Functional Skills?

Functional Skills are the gateway to building your confidence and achieving something you never thought you could!

Functional Skills are English, Maths and ICT skills that provide you with the essential knowledge and understanding you will need to progress and succeed in your education, training and employment. They can be studied as a standalone or part of an Apprenticeship programme and are a requirement for all diplomas, foundation learning programmes and Apprenticeships.

They are a requirement for Diplomas, Foundation Learning Programmes and Apprenticeships. These skills can be studied standalone or as part of an Apprenticeship programme.

Do I need Functional Skills?

If you have not previously achieved an A*-C in GCSE English and Maths, you must work towards either a Level 2 Functional Skills or re-take your GCSEs as part of an Apprenticeship programme. However, for some Apprenticeships, you may only need to achieve Level 1 Functional Skills.

If you have already completed the criteria listed below, then you will not need to complete your Functional Skills going into your Apprenticeship programme:

  • Achieved Functional Skills (within the last five years) at the relevant level for your qualification, regardless of the programme through which it was gained.
  • Have GCSE A*-C grades in English, Maths and ICT (achieved within the last five years).


At our Bournemouth Academy, we have staff and classrooms dedicated to supporting you to earn your Functional Skills qualifications and start your Apprenticeship with us!

Achieve something you thought you never could, and build your confidence by completing your Functional Skills. There’s nothing to be worried about - around 67% of all learners on Apprenticeship programmes regardless of age or background have completed one or more subject in functional skills, so you’re not in the minority!

If you need, or would like, further information about Functional Skills or have any Apprenticeship related questions, please send us an email at enquiries@pgon.co.uk or call us on 0800 783 2545.