If you are thinking of joining the Army as a regular or reservist, there are extensive opportunities to gain civilian qualifications and awards that recognise the leadership and management skills obtained during military service. Accreditation has been obtained for both trade training and the leadership and management training of officers and soldiers, whether regular or reservist.
The civilian qualifications arena is constantly changing and the Army works to ensure that modern military skills gained can be accurately mapped to industries’ future needs. This not only means that the Army’s teaching and training techniques remain current, but that the qualifications gained by Army personnel, while serving, are comparable to those available to civilians.
To this end, the Army has developed close links with several professional and educational institutes, some of which are listed below. The list is not exhaustive but offers a glimpse of the sort of organisations offering accreditation of Army training and education:
- Chartered Management Institute
- Institute of Leadership and Management
- City and Guilds of London Institute
- Plymouth/Portsmouth University through Wilts & Somerset Colleges Partnership – progressive route through from Level 5 to an MA or MSc with E-learning Foundation Degree in Business and Management
- Bournemouth University – e-learning pathway to a full BA (Hons) in International Business & Management
- Newcastle Business School/Northumbria University – BA (Hons) Leadership and Management Work-based Learning Award
Advice on personal development
The Army takes personal development very seriously and has endorsed a Whole Life Development programme to ensure that everyone has an opportunity for personal improvement. Personal development activities usually take the form of some kind of training or education course, which may or may not be related to an Army career. The courses may be computer-based, instructor led or distance learning: in the unit or locally provided by an education authority.
Advice is available to officers and soldiers through their chain of command and unit Regimental Career Management Officers, who are responsible for advising individuals on career-specific education and learning, career management, personal development issues, use of personal development and review, and initial resettlement matters. More specialist advice on personal development, resettlement and funding is available from Individual Education and Resettlement Officers (IEROs), based in Army Education Centres.
Standard Learning Credits (SLCs) allow soldiers to claim 80 per cent of fees paid to civilian bodies for certain personal development courses, examinations and support, up to a maximum of £175 a year.
The Enhanced Learning Credit scheme is designed to complement the SLC scheme and help pay for potentially more expensive courses at Level 3 (A-level equivalent) and above. The scheme allows one claim each financial year (Apr – Apr) and a maximum of three claims per person. Funding is available in two tiers – the lower tier of up to £1,000 per claim for those with at least four year’s eligible service; the higher tier of £2,000 for those with at least eight year's eligible service. The individual must pay a personal contribution of 20 per cent of the course cost, or the remainder of the cost of the course if it exceeds the relevant tier limit.
The Publicly Funded Further Education and Higher Education (PF FEHE) support is to assist Service personnel (SP) as they leave the Army. To use this scheme SP must be registered with for the Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme. (see link in right column)
The support provides full state subsidised tuition fees for eligible Service leavers undertaking their first further or higher level qualification. This means either a first full Level 3 (GCE A level or vocational equivalent) or a first higher education qualification eg HND or a foundation degree or an undergraduate degree or its equivalent. It covers the complete tuition fees for the course, one claim per year.
For more information:
- visit Enhanced Learning Credits website (see link in right column and click on PF FEHE section)
- contact the IEROs or Learning Development Officers based in Army education centres
Learning and Skills Council funding
The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) is responsible for funding all further education provision in England and the Army currently draws down LSC funds to pay for a range of qualifications for its personnel. These qualifications include: Apprenticeships and Advanced apprenticeships in IT, horsecare, engineering maintenance, catering and a range of other subjects.
This provision ensures that Army personnel are offered qualifications which are consistent with Government policy and also compare with qualifications obtained through colleges of further education. Completion rates in Army apprenticeships are higher than the national average and are integrated with normal Army business as part of the Army’s Whole Life Development programme.