Decisions at 18 and beyond

At 18, a whole world of opportunities is waiting for you! Do you want to carry on learning, for example at university? Is an Apprenticeship right for you? Are you ready for employment?

Higher Education

Roughly one third of 18 year olds who complete A Levels and other relevant courses go on to higher education. With huge choice of qualifications and courses on offer, it’s vital that you research:

  • The different types of courses on offer.
  • The qualifications you need for entry.
  • What you can do next with a degree level qualification. Will you be qualified for a specific job? Will you take further training or professional qualifications?

Start your research at:


A growing number of 18 year olds take the Apprenticeship route into employment. An Apprenticeship is a real job that includes training and qualifications. There are hundreds of different types of Apprenticeships available in a range of levels:

Look out for opportunities in Higher and Degree Apprenticeships as an alternative route to a traditional university degree. You will be an employee and be paid wages for the work that you do, and you will also spend time at a university or college. There is more information at:


The world of work is changing all the time. Employers want people who are flexible, who can learn and who can cope with change. Qualifications are important, but they are also looking for people with general employability skills. Are you a ‘can do’ person with a positive attitude to work? Can you:

  • Understand and follow instructions?
  • Use numbers, and spell and write clearly?
  • Use a computer?
  • Organise and motivate yourself?
  • Work well in a team?

Looking for work? Try:

  • Advice from the National Careers Service:
  • Online job search websites, Apps or through social media.
  • Job vacancy notices – at school or college and in supermarkets, shop windows, public buildings, local newspapers and magazines etc.
  • Local recruitment and employment agencies.
  • Contact local businesses – in person, with a phone call, by letter or email.
  • Your personal networks – tutors, teachers, careers teacher, careers adviser, family, and friends.