Higher Technical Qualifications (HTQs) have been developed in partnership with employers and are delivered by industry experts and focus on the skills, knowledge and behaviours that are in-demand by employers. They can also act as a stepping stone to further study, such as an apprenticeship or undergraduate degree.

These technical qualifications include Foundation Degrees, Higher National Certificates and Higher National Diplomas and by completing an HTQ you will also achieve a Degree Year 1 or 2 (Level 4 or 5) qualification in your subject area. The courses are classroom-based with the opportunity to learn practical skills through workshops, role playing exercises or using industry facilities.

On average an HTQ will take between one and two years to complete if studying full-time. Flexible options such as part-time, online and learning through short courses may also be available. HTQs are provided by universities, Institutes of Technology, local colleges and independent providers.

Many providers will have their own entry criteria, such as minimum GCSE or A level (or equivalent) requirements. If you don’t have GCSEs or A levels, you may be eligible for an HTQ through an Access to Higher Education course.

Whether you’re looking to take the next step in your chosen career or want to retrain into a new industry, an HTQ can help you gain the skills you need for a specialist technical job.

The first HTQs, focussing on digital sector subjects like Cyber Security or Software Development, began teaching in September 2022. Qualifications in Health and Science and Construction successfully launched in September 2023, with more sectors coming soon.