What's IT: Hardware and System Support like?

ICT and digital technologies play a part in everything we do. In Scotland, more than 90,000 people work in digital technology roles. The current average full-time salary is also over 30% higher than the Scottish average.

There’s never been a better time to start your ICT career. A Foundation Apprenticeship in IT: Hardware and System Support could lead to jobs such as:

  • cyber security analyst
  • IT support technician
  • security administrator
  • network manager

As well as tech employers, you’ll find ICT and digital technology jobs in many other sectors such as:

  • healthcare
  • financial services
  • the creative industries

Even if you have not considered or studied digital technologies before, that's ok! These jobs could offer you a way to use your maths, science and problem-solving skills.

What's the qualification?

You’ll gain a Foundation Apprenticeship in Information Technology: Hardware/System Support. That's the same level of learning as an SQA Higher, at SCQF Level 6.

This includes:

  • a National Progression Award (NPA) in Professional Computer Fundamentals at SCQF Level 6
  • 5 units of a Diploma for IT & Telecommunications Professionals at SCQF Level 6

SCQF qualification levels explained

What will I learn?

Your National Progression Award (NPA) will cover:

  • Security Fundamentals
  • Network Fundamentals
  • Server Administration Fundamentals

In S6, you’ll work in a hands-on way as part of your work placement, towards achieving the 5 units of your Diploma:

  • Personal Effectiveness
  • Health and Safety in IT and Telecom
  • IT and Telecom System Operation
  • Testing IT and Telecom Systems
  • Working with IT and Telecoms Hardware and Equipment

Your Foundation Apprenticeship will also help you to develop meta-skills. Employers value these skills, which include:

  • communication
  • problem-solving
  • working with others
  • time management

You'll need these transferable skills for working in a range of other related jobs.

Where could it take me?

Your Foundation Apprenticeship gives you lots of options, including:

  • Modern Apprenticeship: When you complete your Foundation Apprenticeship, you’ll have achieved 5 units of the IT and Telecoms Modern Apprenticeship at SCQF Level 6. If you choose this route, you’ll have a head start in your career.

  • further education: Continue your studies at college with a HNC or HND in a related subject. Your workplace experience will support your college application.

  • university: All Scottish universities recognise Foundation Apprenticeships as equal to SQA Highers. You’ll already have experience in the industry – this will make your UCAS stand out from the crowd. This apprenticeship also provides you with 42 UCAS tariff points. Find out more about points on the UCAS website

  • straight to a job: Use your qualification and work experience to find a job in the ICT and digital technologies industry. You could work in many areas, such as:
    • IT technical support
    • database administration
    • telecoms engineering
    • network planning and control

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How will it work?

You'll do the Foundation Apprenticeship alongside your other school subjects. You'll work on projects with an employer and a learning provider, such as a college. It'll give you an industry-recognised qualification that's great for your CV.

Read IT: Hardware and System Support: Foundation Apprenticeship info to see how it all works!

How can I apply?

If you're staying on at school, you can apply for a Foundation Apprenticeship.

Use the search tool to find out if this subject is available at your school. Then fill out the form that comes next, to let us know you're interested. We'll get back to you with more information.

Find out if this subject is available at your school