To old to retake GCSEs

#1
Hi,

I want to join the TA as a Communication Systems Engineer. The prerequisites are GCSEs grade C in English language, maths, science/ICT.

I only achieved GCSEs grade E in science dual award and maths at school 10 years ago, however I do have a BTEC Award (equivalent to an a-level) in ICT and seven years experience in ICT Systems Support and Networking.

I'm 26 and supporting both my wife and 5 month old child so going back to college or spending two or three years studying is not really an option.

I've emailed an army carriers adviser mentioning all the above and all they've said is "you need the correct qualifications". I don't believe he's fully understood my situation of being a working adult with a family with an ICT qualification higher then GCSE level and not some kid who has just left school with low grades.

Can anyone currently in a similar tech based role or someone else who assesses new recruits job roles please advise.

Many Thanks.
 
#2
Go on the NQF website and match up what your vocational quals are equivalent to. I guess you will have done a level 2 btec first qualification prior to the btec level 3 you mentioned. These generally include maths and English elements.

Or, there are online adult education courses. You can do level 2 qual equivalent to gcse grade c in about 6 weeks.

It's easy for the aca to simply read what's in the paper and slavishly quote entry requirements. Make him work. Alternatively, go for a trade that doesn't need them, RE/ REME are technical and you won't get bored as its different to your day job.


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Drivers_lag

On ROPS
On ROPs
#3
He has fully understood but you don't want to listen.

Why can't you go to night school? I did. A GCSE is one night a week and it's a ******* doddle.
 
#4
I did 3 o'levels by correspondence course. The only thing stopping you is you.
 
#5
When I did my Army entrance, I was asked to bring my qualifications along to the next interview. I brought them. Nobody asked to see them. Same as when I turned up on day 1 week 1 for basic training, nobody asked to see them.
 
#6
Never too old. I re-took English to teach at 28, I did the level 2 equivalent, took me 1 term on a fast track course - 3 hours one evening a week. There was a bit of homework, but again, at least you can be near the missus and little one when doing it. Ex girlfriend of mine re-took her GSCE maths at 36, she did 3 hours a week for a year, that was it. You will also find that in adult education the vast majority of colleges run a 30 week year, rather than the 36 / 38 (whatever it is) that schools do.


You need to get your ass down to a local college to find out - You'll find that doing adult education is VERY different to school. A lot more enjoyable for sure.

Also - You'll spend less time doing a year in college than you will with the TA - I'd be shocked if you had to spend more than a year to re-take a GCSE.
 

sup rec

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
Go on the NQF website and match up what your vocational quals are equivalent to. I guess you will have done a level 2 btec first qualification prior to the btec level 3 you mentioned. These generally include maths and English elements.

Or, there are online adult education courses. You can do level 2 qual equivalent to gcse grade c in about 6 weeks.

It's easy for the aca to simply read what's in the paper and slavishly quote entry requirements. Make him work. Alternatively, go for a trade that doesn't need them, RE/ REME are technical and you won't get bored as its different to your day job.


Posted from the ARRSE Mobile app (iOS or Android)
Why would the ACA need to work. He has made the entry requirements he required. If the applicants wants to join the Army then they need the requisite grades - if the OPs lifestyle is to busy with looking after his family how is he going to cope being away from them during Phase 1 and 2 training. As previously said, do correspondence courses.
 
#9
my experience was every guy i ever spoke to over the phone regarding my application gave me varied (and wrong) info. I'd advise talking to someone in person about using your existing qualifications and if computer says no follow every other suggestion here and retake. The TA's not going anywhere, you have time.
 
#11
It is quite often the case that there are certain academic requirements for direct entry into trades. Once in though, and serving in a different role/trade personnel are often selected other than these initial requirements, this can be on merit, a selection process or part of a career path.

I suggest you join the TA (if you haven't already) and fight for the role you want on the inside, but use the time for your initial training to gain quals you need as it will do you good in the long run.
 
#13
I'm 26 and supporting both my wife and 5 month old child so going back to college or spending two or three years studying is not really an option.
Getting a GCSE will be a great deal easier than overcoming your defeatist attitude.
 
L

lumpy2

Guest
#15
Same as Drivers Lag, I did most of my O Levels at night school, in my twenties, having royally f*cked up at school!

If you only need one or two, it shouldn't be too onerous. Best of luck.
 
#16
I'm 28 and just finished re-doing one of my GCSEs, 1 night a week for 2 hours at a local college. Too old is nonsense.

Was pretty good fun too as most of the other students were my age ish... or older.
 
#17
Thanks for the input guys its really helped, how long has it taken some of you guys to a GCSE at night classes? What about applying for the TA now, going for a role that requires no qualification, then once gaining the right ones changing my role? If you are allowed do you keep your current rank or do you start at private again?
 
#18
You will require level 2 (equivalent to GCSE) maths and English for promotion. Join now and you may get supported through what you require.
 
#19
Thanks for the input guys its really helped, how long has it taken some of you guys to a GCSE at night classes? What about applying for the TA now, going for a role that requires no qualification, then once gaining the right ones changing my role? If you are allowed do you keep your current rank or do you start at private again?
Generally they are 1 year courses running Sept-June/July. Some colleges will insist on a preliminary assessment in that subject (eg a basic maths test) but its nothing difficult. I'd start looking around now as there might be somewhere with spaces left for THIS years courses.
 

Drivers_lag

On ROPS
On ROPs
#20
Generally they are 1 year courses running Sept-June/July. Some colleges will insist on a preliminary assessment in that subject (eg a basic maths test) but its nothing difficult. I'd start looking around now as there might be somewhere with spaces left for THIS years courses.
Yep. One year, 3 hrs a week was mine.

I was also a total mong at maths in school, I think I got a z in my gcse... I didn't need maths for anything in particular - I just felt thick without it to show to a civvi employer, so I set about rectifying it.

Lo and behold, when I actually went and listened , It was an absolute doddle. I think I scored 98% on the final tests.

Just get your ass back to school, it's actually quite fun.
 

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