Professionalism, it's something we all aspire to in our careers. Being a professional gets you noticed, it earns you respect and can help you to climb the career ladder. One way to make yourself more of a professional is with Professional Qualifications – but what are they? How do they work, and who are they for? Read on and you'll find the answer to all these questions.
As their name implies, Professional Qualifications are certificates awarded directly by professional bodies like the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) or the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). Generally they involve practical, hands-on training students to gain real experience in their sector.
How can Professional Qualifications help your career?
Well, in some instances they are a prerequisite, which means you won't be able to apply for certain jobs if you don't have one. A good example would again be in Human Resources, where many vacancies specify that applicants must have a CIPD qualification. Studying on a course which is accredited by a professional body like the CIPD can lead to becoming chartered - a title which says to employers you are someone with a level expertise in your field.
This obviously translates to better job prospects and potentially better earning potential as you move up the career ladder. One great aspect of Professional Qualifications is that they can be flexible enough to fit around your day job. They are often studied as part-time day, evening or distance learning courses. This can be particularly useful if you're interested in a change of career, allowing you to stay in your day job while you study.
Professional Qualifications exist in almost all professions, from engineering and banking to accountancy and textiles. If there is a professional body for your industry, then there will likely be a qualification for it. They vary in how much they cost and how long they take to complete, depending entirely on the qualification you're studying. They are usually available at varying levels of skill and experience, allowing students to work their way up through the levels as their careers progress.
If you're interested in Professional Qualifications and want to find out more about them, you can find further information and course details on this site. You'll also find more information and advice about foundation degrees, gap years, voluntary work and sponsored degrees, as well as more than 300 distance learning videos.
- Look for related Jobs and Courses
- Find case studies of school leavers who have taken this route.
- Read one of our free careers resource magazines.
- Get help! Contact us via Twitter, Facebook, firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0208 502 4130