Higher Technical Qualifications (HTQs) are now available in Digital, Construction and Health & Science with more sectors coming in September 2024. Find out what they are, who they’re for, and what and where you can study.

What are Higher Technical Qualifications? (HTQs)

HTQs are technical qualifications that have been developed by employers and awarding bodies, so you’ll get the right training, knowledge, and skills to succeed in the workplace.

They are based on the same set of standards as apprenticeships and T Levels and have been approved by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education as meeting the occupational standards for the relevant sector.

There are many different types of HTQs, such as:

  • higher national diplomas
  • higher national certificates
  • foundation degrees
  • higher education diplomas

Not all diplomas, certificates and foundation degrees are approved HTQs. Look out for the HTQ logo or banner which will always show on approved qualifications.



The Higher Technical Qualification is approved against occupational standards decided by employers.

Who are Higher Technical Qualifications for?

  • They're for students over 18 who want to study a subject to prepare them for skilled jobs, and also for adults looking to retrain or upskill.
  • They would suit you if you want a more practical, employer-led programme.
  • Although Higher Technical Qualifications are primarily designed for entry into skilled employment or those looking to retrain or upskill, you could also progress to further study and/or training.

Higher Technical Qualifications

VIDEO: What are Higher Technical Qualifications?

Find out more about Higher Technical Qualifications.

Where can I study a Higher Technical Qualification?

  • Higher Technical Qualifications are mostly taught in the classroom, in further education colleges, universities, Institutes of Technology or independent training providers.
  • They don't usually involve industry placements, but you could learn practical skills in workshops or simulated work places.

Why take a Higher Technical Qualification?

  • They’re a high-quality alternative to other popular routes, such as apprenticeships, or degrees.
  • They can lead to high-skilled, well paid jobs in a range of sectors, giving you a head start in your chosen career.

What subjects are available?

How do I find a course?

You can apply for HTQs directly through UCAS or visit the National Careers Service for more information about how Higher Technical Qualifications can help you get the right training and skills to help you succeed in your chosen career.

See all Higher Technical Qualifications on UCAS