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Choices at 14

At 14 most school students will be making some important decisions about what they want to study for the next couple of years.  This is a key time in a student’s school career and, for many they will be making this decision without a future career in mind.  Subjects and qualifications selected at 14 will have repercussions on options later in life – at 16; at 18; and future career paths.

It’s challenging and requires some careful thought and research and it’s important to seek advice from the school, careers advisers, parents and guardians.

In truth, some choices are already made for the students as there will be some compulsory subjects including English, maths and a science.  Some schools will also require students to study a language. 

Once in the working world students will require a set of core skills – communication, numeracy, IT, problem solving and working with others – a combination of school studies and extra-curricular activity should help most students to develop these skills.

Certainly the above skills will be required for a successful career in logistics and transport.  Maths and English are two subjects in which employers in the sector will definitely be looking for exam success.  Other subjects that are likely to be useful include geography, languages and IT.

Sources of information

There’s plenty of information and guidance available on the internet.

Logistics, supply chain and transport careers websites

  • People 1st and GoSkills merged in July 2011, which means that hospitality, passenger transport, travel and tourism fall under the same umbrella and can be accessed centrally at – www.people1st.co.uk.

Government websites

The government careers information and guidance websites are organised by nation: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.  However, not all the content is country-specific so it’s worth taking a look at all of them.

General careers and advice websites

  • www.planitplus.net developed as resource for careers, learning and schools information in Scotland but has some useful resources for those living outside Scotland
  • www.thestudentroom.co.uk/ includes chat and guidance on study options at 14.
  • www.youngscot.org the national youth information and citizenship charity for Scotland aimed at young people, aged 11 - 26, and providing a mixture of information, ideas and incentives to help them become confident, informed and active citizens.
  • www.totalprofessions.com this website offers guidance on options at key decision stages, this links to options at 14 and includes careers advice and links to the major professional associations.

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