Higher Technical Qualifications (or HTQs) are level four and level five qualifications, including foundation degrees, Higher National Certificates (HNCs) and Higher National Diplomas (HNDs). 
HTQs are the ideal option for many individuals, no matter what stage of life they’re currently at. They’re fantastic for those who are just starting out in their career and wanting to develop their STEM knowledge, and also for those who are looking to upskill or completely retrain into something new - the opportunities really are endless! 
 
HTQs are based on employer requirements 
 
The new qualifications were first announced in 2020, brought in to improve HNCs and HNDs. They have been designed to better align occupations, and focus more on improving skills as well as knowledge within the workplace. 
 
HTQs have been approved against employer developed standards (i.e. occupational standards), meaning that they are well recognised within industry and will make a real difference when applying for roles. 
 
The newly developed qualifications will ensure that learners gain the exact skills that employers want, so that firms can be fully confident that they have the skills, knowledge and behaviours required for specialist roles. 
 
Mick Lochran, Project Director at LIoT, is excited for the opportunities that HTQs will bring for our learners: 
 
“Higher Technical Qualifications really are the next step in ever-evolving, exciting STEM industries. We’re already receiving incredible feedback from our current students, and I’m excited to see more and more individuals enrol. 
 
“With employers telling us exactly what skills they are looking for, students can have complete confidence that they are studying for themselves as an investment for their future. 
 
“By focusing on real-world skills, HTQs are set to revolutionise the STEM sector. With more subjects being added to the HTQ programme every year, there will be something available to suit everyone. If you’re interested in studying towards a HTQ to better your future, get in touch with one of our fantastic partners today!” 
 
HTQs will typically take between one to two years to complete on a full-time basis, however there are also many options for part-time and distance learning also available, meaning that learners can study flexibly alongside their busy schedules. 
 
What subjects can I study? 
 
From September 2023, students have been able to study HTQs in the construction, design and build sector, as well as health and science. 
 
From September 2024, there will be several additions to the HTQ portfolio - including business and administration, education and early years, engineering and manufacturing, and legal, finance and accounting. 
 
From September 2025, we’ll see a further six highly valued subjects being added: 
 
Agriculture, environmental and animal care 
Catering and hospitality 
Creative and design 
Care services 
Protective services 
Sales, marketing and procurement 
 
Am I entitled to any financial support? 
 
HTQs are eligible for the higher education student finance offer, meaning that both full-time and part-time students studying for a minimum of one year will be able to apply for both tuition and maintenance loans, similarly to university. 
 
For any HTQ courses shorter than one year in duration, these will be eligible for an ‘Advanced Learner Loan’, covering the tuition fee but not a maintenance loan. 
 
Can I study HTQs with LIoT? 
 
Yes, of course! LIoT partners offering HTQs include Boston College, Grantham College & University Centre, Lincoln College, Riseholme College, University Campus North Lincolnshire (UCNL), and University Centre Grimsby. 
 
Alongside the full HTQ qualification, partners of Lincolnshire Institute of Technology are also offering singular units, for those individuals looking to access specific training required for their roles. Learners can now study and gain accreditations only for the individual units or modules that they require, rather than having to undertake a full course. 
 
To find out more about the HTQ courses offered by our partners, visit their websites below: 
 
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