Digital T Level Employer FAQ

Industry Placements – FAQ

Why are you promoting industry placements?
Industry placements will be a core part of our Digital T Levels, the new courses starting in September 2020, which will follow GCSEs and will be equivalent to 3 A Levels. The Digital T Level will combine classroom theory, practical learning and an industry placement to ensure that students have a real experience of the workplace.  T Levels are part of the government’s reform of technical education to boost productivity and give young people the skills business needs. OSFC are the only provider in Greater Manchester to start the first Digital T Level in September 2020 and will offer more courses in the years that follow.  In time, there will be T Levels in subjects ranging from Accountancy through to Science.

The content for these 2-year courses has been developed by panels made up of employers, learning providers and representatives of trade organisations.  Together they have identified the key knowledge, skills and behaviours that students will need to learn to ensure they are employable.  To find out more about T Levels visit:

More information on T Levels

What does an industry placement involve?
Industry placements give young people studying a technical course practical experience directly related to their course, in this instance the Digital T Level, helping to prepare them for the world or work. Employers like you play a key role in creating these opportunities for young people at the start of their careers.  Placements help develop technical and employability skills and build confidence.Placements last for a minimum of 315 working hours.  The longer duration gives students time to master the essentials and gives employers time to mould the student’s abilities, so they can really add value to the organisation.  The exact details of how the placement is organised is agreed between OSFC and the employer.

What is the difference between industry placements, apprenticeships and work experience?
Around 80% of the Digital T Level will be spent in a classroom with the remaining 20% on industry placement. Apprenticeships, by contrast, are typically 80% on-the-job and 20% in the classroom and more suited to those who feel ready to enter the workforce.  Work experience is typically much shorter, often just 1-2 weeks, and arranged by schools before GCSEs to give students a brief taste of being in work.

Why should I get involved now if T Levels are only starting in 2020?
We recognise that industry placements are new and a big adjustment for employers. Therefore, it is very important that as many employers as possible across all industries start working with local providers now to plan and deliver T Level-style placements so that the introduction of T Level courses from September 2020 onward goes smoothly.

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