Functional Skills

Welcome to the functional skills page here at Harrogate Tutors. This page will provide you with information about the functional skills level 1 all the way to level 2.

The functional skills maths and English exams start at the same entry level, which is entry level 1 and progress the same. There are 5 levels of functional skills qualifications; entry level 1, entry level 2, entry level 3, level 1 and level 2. The last level, level 2, is the GCSE equivalent that is accepted by employers and universities.

The Edexcel and City and Guilds are two of the biggest exam boards that provide English and maths functional skills qualifications. The most popular qualification is the City and Guilds functional skills level 2 with thousands of people sitting the exam every year. The curriculum that the exam boards use is set by the government in the UK therefore there isn’t a difference between the exam boards qualifications. However, even though there isn’t any difference between the exam boards, there are different functional skills courses that have different prices.


Harrogate Tutors have accumulated the most frequently asked questions and answered them below for you about functional skills qualifications. 


What is a functional skills qualification?
The functional skills qualification gives people the opportunity to improve their English and maths. If you achieve the level 2 qualification, this is equivalent to a GCSE grade C/4. 

What is the difference between GCSE exams and functional skills exams? 
GCSE exams have more contents that you need to learn compared to the functional skills exams. The functional skills exams apply real life situations as their questions, therefore it’s more relatable. 
Is the functional skills exam easier than GCSE? 
The two exams are different, it depends since some people prefer the functional skills exams since the questions are real life situations. If you prefer contextualised questions then GCSE is the better exam for you but if you prefer real life situations then the functional skills exam is better for you. 

How long does it take to complete a functional skills qualification?
This varies depending on your knowledge, we will look at each learner and make a plan for them which is determined by their knowledge already and when they need the qualification by.

Can the functional skills qualification get you a Job? 
Yes you can get a job with the level 2 qualification since it is a GCSE equivalent. This qualification is also accepted by higher education courses.

What is the pass mark for the functional skills exams? 
This varies depending on the paper and how difficult it is. The pass Mark normally is around 50-60% but this could change. 

Can I get a free functional skills exam?
The UK government funds some of the functional skills courses, but there is a criteria that you have to meet to get this. If you are older than 19, then you won’t be able to apply for this but there are other routes such as apprenticeship programmes to get funding. MME provides the cheapest online English functional skills exams.

Can I take an online functional skills maths level 2 exam? 
Yes, you can book your exam through MME. MME offers functional skills online maths level 2 exams