Where will this course lead?

This free online course will help you improve your skills and gain a nationally recognised functional skills qualification.

The programme is designed to:

  • Help you at work
  • Refresh your skills
  • Improve your chances of getting a new job or progressing in your career
  • Help you with ordinary activities such as writing letters and helping your children with their school work.
  • Build your confidence
  • Enable progression to other courses e.g. Teaching Assistant, Business and Management, Apprenticeships, Access programmes or GCSEs.

What will I study?

You will be invited to complete an online initial assessment to help us to determine your current level. Online learning is available for study at Level 1 and Level 2 of the programme. This is a 15-week fast-track course.

You will study a wide range of topics to develop your reading, writing and verbal communication skills, including:

  • How to confidently participate in group discussions
  • Reading for understanding
  • Reading and writing for pleasure
  • Skills to help you in the workplace
  • Explore different writing styles
  • Brush up on spelling, punctuation and grammar
  • Overcome barriers to learning.

Gaining a Functional Skills English qualification can enhance job and learning opportunities.

How will this course be delivered?

Courses are usually 3 hours per week for online options, but may vary. Both daytime and evening options are available.

Most courses start in September, January or April. Some other start dates may also be available. We also have options for learning at our college campuses, face to face.

Most of the online Functional Skills courses are 15 weeks/15 lessons long. This is a 'fast-track' course. Longer courses are available for study in person at one of our college campuses.

Contact us for more details.

What qualifications will I get?

A nationally recognised English qualification - Functional Skills English, awarded by City & Guilds.

How will I be assessed?

Using either paperbased or online tests. This involves a writing paper and a reading paper. You will need to attend one of the college campuses on your exam day to sit your exams in person. You will also complete a short speaking, listening and communicating assessment in class with your tutor, which can be done online.

How do I get a place on the course?

Enrolment opportunities are available throughout the year. Enquire through the college website and enter your details. After you have done this, you will be sent a short survey to complete. Once you have been allocated a place on a course, you will be invited to enrol.

For more details, you can also email us at: afskills@solihull.ac.uk

What are the entry requirements?

Students must be aged 19+. If you have learning difficulty or disability please let us know when you apply. After you apply, you will be asked to complete an initial assessment. This will help us to determine whether the level of the course is suitable for you.

What else do I need to know?

Courses are free for most UK residents*.

Our online courses are taught using Microsoft Teams. You will need access to a PC, laptop, tablet or similar device that also has a microphone and speakers/headphones.

Solihull College offers full time and part time courses for businesses and residents in Birmingham, Walsall, Wolverhampton, Coventry Warwickshire and the whole of the West Midlands.

(*exclusions apply).

This course will run subject to a minimum class size.

What can I do after this course?

There is a wide range of opportunities for you after successfully completing Functional Skills, both vocational and academic. You may consider progressing onto a Functional Skills maths course, a management or business programme, Teaching Assistant training, Access Programmes, an apprenticeship programme, GCSEs or higher education.



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Course Code


Study Mode

Part Time

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Functional Skills English (Online)

What’s Involved?

Predicted Employment

How much can I earn?


Employment by Region

The career paths provided are to give you an idea of the careers that you could progress onto in the future. However, for some, you may need to complete higher level qualifications and gain experience before your dream job becomes a reality. The information provided is to support further research and to generate some initial career ideas when choosing a course. Please check entry requirements to degree courses, apprenticeships, and jobs as this may vary from year to year and across providers. For further advice and guidance, please contact: careers@solihull.ac.uk.