Types of Training in Hertfordshire

Guide to Qualification Difficulty Levels

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Entry

  • Entry level award
  • Entry level certificate (ELC)
  • Entry level diploma
  • Entry level English for speakers of other languages (ESOL)
  • Entry level essential skills
  • Entry level functional skills
  • Skills for Life
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Level 1

  • First certificate
  • GCSE - grades 3, 2, 1 or grades D, E, F, G
  • Level 1 award
  • Level 1 certificate
  • Level 1 diploma
  • Level 1 ESOL
  • Level 1 essential skills
  • Level 1 functional skills
  • Level 1 national vocational qualification (NVQ)
  • Music grades 1, 2 and 3
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Level 2

  • CSE - grade 1
  • GCSE - grades 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4 or grades A*, A, B, C
  • Intermediate apprenticeship
  • Level 2 award
  • Level 2 certificate
  • Level 2 diploma
  • Level 2 ESOL
  • Level 2 essential skills
  • Level 2 functional skills
  • Level 2 national certificate
  • Level 2 national diploma
  • Level 2 NVQ
  • Music grades 4 and 5
  • O level - grade A, B or C
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Level 3

  • A-level
  • Access to higher education diploma
  • Advanced apprenticeship
  • Applied general
  • AS level
  • International Baccalaureate diploma
  • Level 3 award
  • Level 3 certificate
  • Level 3 diploma
  • Level 3 ESOL
  • Level 3 national certificate
  • Level 3 national diploma
  • Level 3 NVQ
  • Music grades 6, 7 and 8
  • Tech level
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Level 4

  • Certificate of higher education (CertHE)
  • Higher apprenticeship
  • Higher national certificate (HNC)
  • Level 4 award
  • Level 4 certificate
  • Level 4 diploma
  • Level 4 NVQ
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Level 5

  • Diploma of higher education (DipHE)
  • Foundation degree
  • Higher national diploma (HND)
  • Level 5 award
  • Level 5 certificate
  • Level 5 diploma
  • Level 5 NVQ
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Level 6

  • Degree apprenticeship
  • Degree with honours - for example bachelor of the arts (BA) hons, bachelor of science (BSc) hons
  • Graduate certificate
  • Graduate diploma
  • Level 6 award
  • Level 6 certificate
  • Level 6 diploma
  • Level 6 NVQ
  • Ordinary degree without honours
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Level 7

  • Integrated master’s degree, for example master of engineering (MEng)
  • Level 7 award
  • Level 7 certificate
  • Level 7 diploma
  • Level 7 NVQ
  • Master’s degree, for example master of arts (MA), master of science (MSc)
  • Postgraduate certificate
  • Postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE)
  • Postgraduate diploma
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Level 8

  • Doctorate, for example doctor of philosophy (PhD or DPhil)
  • Level 8 award
  • Level 8 certificate
  • Level 8 diploma

There’s no simple comparison for NVQ levels 4 and 5. Contact the National Careers Service if you need advice.