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For this guest blog post, we asked T Level expert Sue Lovelock to answer some of the questions parents are asking about the new range of school subjects and qualifications called T Levels.

Students on construction site

30 October 2020

What are T Levels?

T Levels are new qualifications that follow GCSEs, which are equivalent to 3 A levels. Around 80% of a T Level student’s time will be spent in the classroom, with the other 20% spent with an employer on a comprehensive industry placement of at least 9 weeks. T Level courses have been designed with leading businesses, to give young people the skills and experience that employers are looking for in the workplace.

Why would my child choose these over A levels?

A T Level is a new technical qualification that is worth the same number of UCAS points as 3 A levels. T Levels are designed to help students develop the knowledge and technical skills required for skilled careers, so are well suited to those with an idea of the career they aspire to. A levels are more suited to students who wish to pursue a more academic path.

Can my child take a combination of T Levels and A levels?

The size and rigour of a T Level is in line with 3 A levels. A high attaining student could take an A level alongside their T Level, particularly if it supports their progression aspirations following their T Level, including to university. The impact on the student’s timetable will need to be considered; your T Level provider will be able to advise on whether this would suit your child.

When will my child’s school offer T Levels?

T Levels are being rolled out across England in phases. In September 2020, 44 schools and colleges across the country launched the first courses in Design, Surveying and Planning, Digital Production, Design and Development, and Education and Childcare. A further seven courses will launch in September 2021 with an additional sixty learning providers offering them, and by 2023 the full range of twenty-four programmes will be available across the country. To find your nearest provider visit the T Levels website.

Will T Levels be recognised by Universities?

T Level students will be able to go on to university; T Levels attract UCAS points in line with 3 A levels, as shown here:

UCAS tariff points T Level overall grade A Level
168 Distinction* (A* on the core and distinction in the occupational specialism) AAA*
144 Distinction AAA
120 Merit BBB
96 Pass (C or above on the core) CCC
72 Pass (D or E on the core) DDD

In support of T Levels, Matthew Brindley-Sadler, Associate Dean at the University of Staffordshire said:

‘‘The depth and breadth of learning within T Levels really enhances their appeal. The combination of academic study and the industry placement will allow students to continually apply their knowledge and understanding. We really value this approach to learning and recognise how important T Levels will be in providing a universal platform for progression both into degrees and higher apprenticeships.’

Sue LovelockSue Lovelock is the Director of Professional and Technical Education at the Department for Education. To learn more about T Levels, visit


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