There are many different reasons why you might want to learn. You might want to get new skills to get into a particular job. If you're working, you might want to learn skills that can get you promoted. Maybe you want to learn a skill just for the fun of it, or to help you take part in your community more.
Whatever your reason for learning, there's a type of course out there to suit you.
Jobs are more complex these days, so you need up-to-date skills to be able to do them. Learning on the job is a great way to learn something new, and get experience putting the skills into practice.
If university's not for you and you want to learn on the job, an apprenticeship could be for you. You'll get practical experience, a wage and a vocational qualification.
If you're interested in an apprenticeship but need more skills and experience in order to get onto one, a traineeship could be for you. A traineeship can last anything from six weeks to six months and is a work placement that combines work experience with skills training.
All skills are useful, but communication, maths and computer skills are some of the essential ones. Courses in all these areas are available from beginners' levels upwards, so there will be a course that suits your current skill level. And remember, there's no need to feel anxious about going back into learning. Millions of adults do it each year, and tutors are very supportive and do all they can to create a relaxed atmosphere.
If you've got a busy life, work shifts or irregular hours, flexible learning or studying from home might suit you. It can also be an excellent option if you prefer to learn at your own pace.
Many employers say they expect to need more staff with high level skills to fill jobs in the coming years. Maybe you'd like to do a course to get these skills - but you've got other commitments, such as a job or caring responsibilities. If full-time study isn't possible for you, part-time HE could be the answer. And now there's funding for tuition fees for part-time HE courses, so eligible students won't have to pay anything upfront.
Our levels of self-confidence can go up and down, depending on what's happened recently in our lives. So it's normal for your confidence to take a dip from time to time. However, your level of self-confidence can have a real impact on how well you make use of the opportunities that come your way. If your level of confidence has taken a dip recently, or if you've always felt you needed a confidence boost, read our guides to thinking and acting more positively.
There are many courses to choose from, in colleges, learning centres and libraries. A good way to start your learning journey is through a course in a subject you enjoy, such as painting, cookery or crafts.
Using your own Personal Learning Statement you can keep a record of all your learning in one place. So you'll be able to see at a glance which courses you've completed. This could help you in job interviews and when updating your CV.
You can learn in many different types of venues, from colleges and universities to adult learning centres. You can even learn in your own home.