Study programmes

Own your future: career-focused learning for 16-18-year olds
Pick a course that's designed around you

School can only take you so far. Next comes life. To give yourself the best chance of a fulfilling and successful career you need to keep learning. You know this! But, you don’t have to take the academic route to do so. You have options.

A Study Programme is designed around you, to fit your interests and put you on course for your next career step. Working together we identify a clear single aim for your time with us. These might include:

  • Finding a career path suited to you
  • Aiming for an apprenticeship
  • Studying at university
  • Setting up a business

Our Study Programmes run in 9 centres across the UK

Doncaster, Ipswich, Leeds, Lincoln, Lowestoft, Oldham, Salford, Manchester and Norwich

Hands-on sectors to build your career in


Qualifications available

Level 1 and 2 in Business Administration

Our Business Administration Study Programme can help get you started in a successful career in a range of industries from fashion to technology and is the perfect foundation to help you get on the career ladder. This Study Programme will give you a good understanding of basic administrative tasks as well as practical experience in a business environment.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:  

  • Handling mail 
  • Using a filing system 
  • Supporting meetings and events 
  • Archiving and retrieving information 
  • Working and communicating with people in a business environment 
  • Meeting and welcoming visitors. 


Qualifications available

Level 1 in Caring for Children

Level 2 in Introducing Caring for Children and Young People

If you dream of a career working with children and contributing to their early development, you can get off to the best possible start with our Childcare Study Programme. In this course you’ll gain a good understanding of childcare and education, parenting and babysitting. You will gain the basic knowledge and the skills needed to care for young children and will learn about their growth, learning and development.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Accident prevention and caring for children
  • Parenting responsibilities and healthy lifestyles
  • Learning, development and play
  • Safeguarding, respecting and valuing children
  • Craft activities with young children
  • Food and nutrition for a healthy diet

Customer Services

Qualifications available

Level 1 and 2 in Customer Service

Knowledge and experience in Customer Service can help get you get ahead in almost any industry, as good customer-service skills are essential for many jobs. This Study Programme will give you basic knowledge, understanding and experience of dealing with customers in a range of settings and scenarios.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Communicating using customer service language
  • Following the rules to deliver customer service
  • Dealing with customers face-to-face
  • Dealing with customers across a language divide
  • Resolving customer service problems and going the extra mile
  • Delivering customer service to difficult customers

Health and Fitness

Qualifications available

Level 2 and 3 in Health, Fitness and Exercise Instruction

If you enjoy fitness and want to help other people in this area, the Fitness Training Academy (FTA) is for you. With this two-year course you can develop a great understanding of the fitness industry and be qualified both as a Gym Instructor and Personal Trainer. With mentoring from fitness experts and weekly work placements at established fitness and leisure clubs, this course is the perfect way to start your career in fitness.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Anatomy, physiology and nutrition
  • The science behind fitness and how the body reacts to exercise
  • Consulting and supporting clients to change exercise behaviour and keep motivated
  • Inducting new members into the gym and ensuring they are exercising safely
  • Creating personalised fitness plans and exercise classes for varying abilities
  • Employment and entrepreneurial skills

Health and Social Care

Qualifications available

Level 1 in Introduction to Health, Social Care and Children and Young People Settings

Level 2 in Preparing to Work in Health and Social Care

If you are passionate about caring for people with kindness, consideration and respect, then our Health and Social Care Study Programme could be the perfect fit for you. This Study Programme will provide you with an introduction into the social care sector and can get you started in a fulfilling career in adult social care or in children and young people's settings.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Understanding communication and personal development
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Health and safety
  • Safeguarding, protection and duty of care
  • Understand person-centred approaches in adult social care settings
  • The role, duties and responsibilities of the social care worker.


Qualification available

Level 1 in Practical Horticulture Skills

Do you like being outdoors, working with your hands and creating things that people can enjoy? Then a career in horticulture could be the right path for you. This Study Programme will provide you with a good basic understanding of the horticulture industry while giving you practical gardening skills in a realistic setting. You could go into a fulfilling career working in a wide-range of places from sports grounds to garden centres.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Turf and lawn care and identifying weeds
  • Plant production
  • Landscaping and care for planted areas
  • Applying fertilisers
  • Preparing soil and applying an organic mulch
  • Preparing and planting hanging baskets

Motor Vehicle

Qualifications available

Level 1 in Vehicle Maintenance Systems

If you’re interested in cars and having a career outside of an office with variety every day, a career in motor vehicle maintenance could be for you. YMCA Training’s Vehicle Maintenance Study Programme will give you good basic understanding of this highly dynamic sector. It will prepare you well for a diverse range of garage, shop-floor and automotive engineering roles.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Engine lubrication and cooling systems
  • Fuel and exhaust systems
  • Spark ignition and electrical systems
  • Steering, braking and suspension systems
  • Transmission systems
  • Basics of vehicle body fitting

Public Services

Qualifications available

Level 1 in Public Services

Dedication, discipline and tactical decisions are all elements of working in the Public Services. If you are interested in a career in the armed forces, police force, fire service or ambulance service, our Study Programme can help you start your journey. This Study Programme will provide you with a good basic understanding of the various areas of the uniformed services and will give you a solid foundation so that you can develop the personal skills, qualities and attributes that the public services require.

You will cover a variety of areas such as:

  • Public service careers
  • Improving health and fitness
  • Personal skills for the public services
  • Discipline and leadership
  • Team building and communication
  • Land navigation
Apply now for immediate start

Our training centres are not like school or college, new learners join us every week.

Your Study Programme will be made up of four parts

Student support

Our team of Tutors and Coordinators provide outstanding support and are available to help you with a wide range of education and welfare needs such as personal issues, learning needs, study support, problems relating to finance, accommodation, time management and getting you ready for employability.


What are you waiting for? Enrol now
What next?

What next? Good question. After a Study Programme you’ll be ready to take on a Traineeship, a 6-month work placement in your chosen sector – a real job, with real job responsibilities. Once you have a Study Programme and Traineeship under your belt you’ve ticked every box to prepare you to succeed as an apprentice.

Why choose YMCA?

We are a national charity with 175 years' experience in training and apprenticeships. Our high-quality teaching, gold standard guidance and support, fantastic pass rates and clear progression routes will enable you to develop your skills and create a brighter future.