Highbury College is offering a range of FREE distance learning Vocationally Related Qualifications (VRQs).

The courses which can be started at any point during the year allow you to learn in your own time, in your own space, and at a pace that suits you.

Other benefits include:

  • the courses are free
  • upon successful completion you will have achieved a nationally recognised qualification at Level 2
  • you will receive a set of high-quality learner support materials that will be yours to keep and use as a reference
  • the VRQ will further your personal and professional development and looks great on your CV.


To join the course you must have a Level 1 (or above) qualification in English. This could include a GCSE at Grade D-G (1-3) or Functional Skills Level 1 or above.


Level 2 Certificate in Equality and Diversity

On this course you will examine the rights and responsibilities of an individual and study the importance of taking responsibility and action to help others. You will also learn how stereotyping and labelling affects individuals and outline the effects of prejudice and discrimination.

Level 2 Certificate in Information, Advice or Guidance

This qualification will develop your knowledge and understanding of information, advice or guidance and help you to apply these in the context of your business.

Level 2 Certificate in Mental Health Awareness

This course includes 10 mandatory units: understanding mental health, understanding stress, understanding anxiety, understanding phobias, understanding depression, understanding post-natal depression, understanding bipolar disorder, understanding schizophrenia, understanding eating disorders and understanding dementia.

Level 2 Certificate in Preparing to Work in Adult Social Care

This qualification provides an ideal taster for those who may be new to the sector or new to the world of work. The qualification covers the areas of communication, equality, diversity and inclusion, personal development, role of the social care worker, handling information, health and safety, safeguarding, duty of care and person-centred approaches.

Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Working with Individuals with Learning Disabilities

This qualification will support your work with individuals with learning disabilities or difficulties. You will explore the principles of safeguarding, positive risk-taking and gain awareness of the autistic spectrum.

Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Specific Learning Difficulties


This qualification covers specific learning difficulties, how they are diagnosed and how individuals can be supported. The qualification would be suitable for those working within healthcare, social care and education contexts.</p>

Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Business and Administration

The course will develop your essential knowledge of how to carry out administrative tasks. For example how to manage information, supporting events and how to apply your knowledge to a variety of industries and job roles. To be awarded the Level 2 Certificate, you are required to successfully complete 5 mandatory units and 2 optional units.

Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Customer Service

This course will develop your essential knowledge of how to carry out customer service tasks, manage information and support events.

Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Team Leading

This qualification is ideal if you would like to develop the knowledge and understanding required to successfully lead a team. This course will focus on the study of leading a team in a business environment. 

Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Behaviour that Challenges

This qualification will develop an understanding of the common causes and triggers of behaviour that challenges. You will also develop an understanding of effective communication skills and de-escalation techniques.

Level 2 Certificate in Children & Young People's Mental Health

The purpose of this qualification is to increase learner’s knowledge and awareness of children and young people’s mental health. By completing the qualification, learners will develop knowledge of:

  • children and young people’s mental health in context
  • mental health problems commonly associated with children and young people
  • the impact of mental ill-health on children and young people
  • support available to maintain mental wellbeing in children and young people.

Level 2 Certificate in Dignity & Safeguarding

This qualification aims to give learners knowledge and understanding of the key principles of dignity, duty of care and safeguarding as applied to adult health and social care.

Learners will investigate the principles and how they are applied in everyday work contexts. They’ll also have an opportunity to examine the dilemmas that can arise and the consequences when these principles aren’t upheld.

Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Dementia Care

This course aims to assist you to develop knowledge and understanding of the principles of caring for those with dementia. It covers areas such as person-centred care, the influence of positive communication methods, issues relating to the use of medication for those with dementia and the importance of providing appropriate activities.