Course starts: September 2019

Age groups

Skills for life

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Our Skills for Independence course is designed for students aged 16-25 years (with or without an EHCP), who have a learning difficulty or disability, including young people whose needs fall within the Autistic Spectrum. Our programme provides learners with the educational, social, personal and independent skills they require for work.

As part of enrichment activity for students, you will be able to get involved in a range of extra-curricular activities and local community projects. There is also the opportunity for students to undertake one week’s work experience within the academic year.

Course objectives

This programme is for students primarily presenting with conditions that fall within the autistic spectrum range and/or autistic traits and other learning disabilities.

Students may have 1:1 support, or work in small groups with an allocated member of staff.

  • Develop your communication skills
  • Experience a diverse range of activities
  • Enhance your independent working abilities and processing skills
  • Attending Work experience opportunities
  • Be supported to integrate into the wider college community

Course details

Course duration


1 year

Delivered on:

16 hours per week

Please contact the Skills for Life department for more information


  • Entry Level 2 Gateway Skills for Independence
  • Entry Level 3 Gateway Skills for Independence

Entry requirements

Aspire Personal Progress – students with Entry one qualifications.

Teaching team

Emma Nightingale (Course Leader)
Mark Snow
Genny Randall
Rosie Parker
Jenny Mason
Camilla Young


Modules may include:

  • Provide visual support and timetables (where appropriate) in order to support students with managing any change in activity/expectation
  • Have an emphasis on kinaesthetic learning Encourage expressive communication, with an emphasis on supporting the student concerned in making well informed choices of their own volition
  • Provide a diverse programme of leisure, community access, and enrichment activities
  • Gradually introduce all elements of the supported learning programme (using money independently, developing an understanding of cost/value, functional literacy and numeracy, independent living skills, community access) in a highly supportive manner
  • Have an emphasis on communication skills (receptive and expressive) and on developing independent working and processing skills
  • Support students in integrating into the wider college community Increase internal discipline and processing skills, in order to support students in accessing a college environment in a manner that is relevant to the individual, and meets their personal and academic needs

Assessment and exam information

A combination of portfolio evidence, practical tasks, knowledge and understanding tasks or witness statements by the teachers.

Career and progression

Work experience

There is also the opportunity for students to undertake one week’s work experience within the academic year.

Enrichment opportunities

Extra-curricular activities and community projects will be included.

Learner progression

Once completing the course, you can continue to develop your skills by progressing onto a higher level of qualification such as the Employability/Enterprise course or a vocational course in areas such as Hospitality, Horticulture, Retail or Care.

Your career

Instruction and guidance will be given to extend the experience of the student, worksheets and examples of previous work will be available to help inspire the students for future study or employment. Options include:

  • Volunteering
  • Adult Day Service
  • Paid employment

Fee information

Course costs

The course is free for 16-18 year olds and students over 19 with an EHCP

Additional costs

Students will be expected to make a contribution towards cooking, trips out into the community or any equipment that maybe needed. Approximately £50.00 to £100.00.

Funding and bursaries

Students aged over 19, you may be eligible for free tuition depending on the course you want to study, your existing qualifications and your financial circumstances. For more information you can email info@totton.ac.uk or call 023 8087 4874

Advanced Learner Loans are available for students who are aged 19 or over. Repayments do not begin until the course is completed and you are earning £25,000 or over. Eligible learners will be enrolling on a level 3 or above course and are a UK or EU national. For further information, visit gov.uk/advanced-learner-loan

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