Sibford School logo Sibford School logo
In the Diary
Take a look at our upcoming events
Sibford School logo Sibford School logo
Sibford School logo
Sibford School logo
Be you, Be Brilliant.

Careers - students

Below are some useful websites to get you started on your Careers and SELF Journey.

If you would like advice, support, guidance or information on anything careers-related, please complete this form.

Work Experience

How to find work experience

How to find work experience - YouTube

  1. Consider what careers you’re interested in – what type of work experience would be most beneficial? It might not be directly in the career you want but could have skills that cross over and be useful to your future career.
  2. Explore your existing professional networks – do you know anyone in that industry? If you don’t, what about your parents, friends’ parents, teachers? What about students in Year 13 who might have completed a placement in that area? What about employers that have been into school that you’ve met?
  3. Approach companies/employers. It’s usually best to have a named person to contact so ask who that is and then email or write to them.
  4. Larger companies may have closing dates for their work experience so get looking as soon as you can!
  5. There are HUNDREDS of virtual work experience opportunities now – in fact, since 2020, it has become a very normal way of gaining experience.

How to arrange your work placement

  1. Ensure you are away of all deadline dates for organising your placement.
  2. Work with your employer to gain agreement for the placement.
  3. Once you have gained agreement, and only once this have been agreed by the employer please complete the Unifrog work placement form. It is essential that the email and contact name are correct.
  4. Your request will begin a chain of emails for the employer/parent and the Careers Lead to complete to ensure your placement complies with government guidelines.
  5. Wait for your confirmation email to notify you that the placement has been approved.

How to make sure you are prepared

  1. For physical placements, contact your employer before the placement with questions about what you should wear, where you should go, who you will need to ask for, timings and any other practical questions.
  2. For a virtual placement, make sure you have booked your place and carefully read any emails that have been sent through.
  3. Aim to arrive at least 15 minutes early or log-on 10 minutes before the session if it is online.
  4. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and get involved!
  5. Complete your reflection journal every day. Write down any specific examples, answers or tasks and what you learned.
  6. Act responsibly and follow health and safety expectations.
  7. If appropriate, ask your employer if they are willing to act as a reference for you in the future and keep their contact details.
  8. Be prepared for an in-person visit or a call from school to check on your placement.
  9. Enjoy it!

Information on volunteering.


Your Choices

Choosing GCSE’s

What GCSE subjects should I choose? - YouTube

It can feel a bit daunting choosing your GCSE options because the subjects you choose now can affect what options you will have afterwards in terms of sixth form/college/apprenticeship courses and there will be some subject that you have never studies before. But don’t worry!

Support in school

You will get lots of advice along the way for the KS4 team, and there is impartial guidance available on Unifrog.
You will get a chance to hear from the subject teachers about the GCSE option subjects and you can talk to subject teachers.


Useful links:

The Best 100 Apprenticeship Employers & Best 50 Training Providers 2024.

Finding Apprenticeships:

There are various levels of apprenticeship you can undertake depending on your skills and qualifications:

  • Intermediate apprenticeship (level 2) equivalent of GCSE
  • Advanced apprenticeship (level 3) equivalent of A level
  • Higher apprenticeship (levels 4-7)
  • Degree apprenticeship (levels 6-7)

If you’re looking for higher and degree level apprenticeships, this is the listing for 2023 applicants. It gets updated all the time and tells you when apprenticeships schemes will open for applications. It is really recommended that you register on some of these websites and sign up for notifications for specific apprenticeships.

CV or Application form:

Some positions will not accept a CV because they want you to complete their application form. Others will take the information that you have completed on the sites above. A lot, however, still rely on the traditional CV. Make sure you are tailoring it to each application you make – look closely at the person specification and/or details of the job and check that you have included what they are looking for on your CV. Remember to use the Unifrog CV builder:

InterviewsThere a lots of different types of interviews (listed here) so read any and all information that they send you so that you know what to expect.These sites have some fantastic insights and practice exercises that you can use to get a clearer idea of how to succeed.

Apprenticeship Interview Tests:

If your application is accepted and you are invited to interview, you’ll usually be asked to complete some kind of online test. The tests themselves vary hugely, so make sure you read any preparation material you are sent. Sometimes the application software will give you a chance to practice before the real test. Otherwise, you may wish to try some of these practice sites:


Technical levels (T-Levels) are new Level 3 qualifications that follow on from GCSEs. T-Levels were launched in September 2020 and offer an alternative to A Levels/IB/BTEC or apprenticeships.

A T-Level is equivalent to three A levels and, like A levels or BTECS, these qualifications also take 2 years to complete. They are offered in vocational areas and have been developed in conjunction with employers. On a T-Level course, students will spend 80% of their time in the classroom and 20% completing the equivalent of 45-days (315 hours) of meaningful work-experience with an employer. The work placement provides the opportunity to put skills and knowledge from the classroom into practice. The time spent with an employer can be made up of a block period of time or individual days and this may vary from course to course and from one course provider to another.

Learn more here.

Going to University

Going to University:

Most applications to UK universities are made through UCAS (the University and College Admissions Service). This is a process that will take some time and thought, and all students usually need some level of guidance through the application process this will be given within your PHSE lessons by the Sixth Form Team. You will also have some guidance and advice through Unifrog careers platform where you can find lots of useful resources to help your search and research.

Choosing a university:

  • The uni guide has a great article about this. Read it here.
  • Watch this helpful video on finding the right university for you.
  • If you wish to search for university courses, there are other sites to help you in addition to UCAS:
  • The complete university guide has league tables and different ways to compare universities. 
  • Discover uni allows you to compare courses directly based on surveys and data collection carried out on thousands of students.
  • University search allows students to find their ideal university. The website provides the best institutional matches based on the student's predicted grades, course choice and the region of the UK they would like to study in. 
  • Speaking to some of the alumni can also be very helpful. Ask the Sixth Form team or Sarah Read if we are aware of any past students who have studied at your institution of choice.

Please speak to the Sixth Form Team and/or Sarah Read for any information or with any questions you may, we are all here to help you make the best decision for you. Working out your UCAS pointsPoints are awarded for each grade that you get, but different subjects have different levels of difficulty or workload, so the points awarded are different for each type of qualification you study. All level 3 qualifications can be found on the UCAS Tariff Calculator.

Writing your personal statement:

Our students have access to Unifrog – a personal statement writing platform that has been designed to aid and guide students in writing their personal statements. The platform is structured to make sure that you include information that will help your application to stand out, particularly for competitive universities and courses. You will also receive guidance from the Sixth Form Team who have a wealth of experience. 

Click here to see the Unifrog guide on writing personal statements

Not going to university
Lots of students decide that university or an apprenticeship isn’t for them and that they just need a break from education. Here are some ideas and website that can help you to research alternatives. It is really important that you have a plan and that your ‘Gap Year’ is not wasted. Make sure you do thorough research and create a personalised plan of what you want to achieve in that year.
Here some useful links:
Labour Market Information

Youth Employment have an excellent guide to what Labour Market Information (LMI) is and why it can be useful. LMI refers to ‘any relevant information about the current state of the jobs market and it can be local, national or global’. It can include information like:

  • The industries and businesses that operate in a certain location.
  • The types of jobs that exist and what they involve.
  • How many of those jobs there are.
  • The skills that are currently or will be in high demand.
  • Commute and travel to work patterns.
  • Typical rates of pay.
  • Career progression opportunities.

How do I find that information?

  • LMI for All is a fantastic resource for this.
  • gives up to date information about careers with each profile that you read
  • SACU’s Labour Market Explore is quite clever – pick the industry on the spider-diagram, then keep clicking till you find a job. Then it will give you a profile with extra information about job opportunities etc. It’s quick and easy.

Careerometer – use this tool to compare jobs:

Click the dotted square. Type in the first career that you might be interested in and select from the dropdown list. Then add your second choice to see the comparison. Click ‘clear card’ at the bottom of each box to start again.

Other useful links:


Related Stories