What is a UTC? - UTC Leeds

6th July 2021

When deciding where to take their GCSEs and Level 3 qualifications, many students and their families may come across the term ‘UTC’ without being totally sure of what it means. In this blog post we’ll break down exactly how a UTC works and what makes us different from ‘normal’ schools and colleges.

What is a UTC?

University Technical Colleges (UTCs) offer GCSEs and Level 3 qualifications (such as A Levels) just like any other school/college. However, the main difference is that UTCs focus on STEM subjects and tend to offer technical qualifications which regular schools do not. This allows students who are passionate about careers in STEM to get a head-start on their career paths with specialist skills and understanding.

UTCs are government-funded just like other schools, but they do not take on students in Year 7 or 8. While some UTCs have places for Year 9 students, most (including UTC Leeds) offer education for Years 10-13.


What are the benefits of attending a UTC?

If you are a young person with a passion for Science, Technology, Engineering or Maths, attending a UTC may be the right choice for you.

  1. Expert Teachers

Our teachers are specialists in their areas of STEM and are able to provide deep insight into the theoretical and practical aspects of their subjects, giving you chance to further explore the topics that you love.

  1. Cutting-Edge Technology

Attending a UTC gives you the unique opportunity to train on equipment such as CAD machines, 3D printers and lathes from as early as Year 10. Getting this experience early on will make you an attractive candidate for future employers.

  1. Industry Links

UTCs often have strong partnerships with local universities and businesses, giving you access to work experience and advice directly relevant to you. At UTC Leeds, our Industry Partners include the likes of the RAF, Unilever and Siemens. Our students have regular encounters with these partners, giving them valuable insight into the working world.

  1. Project-Based Learning

Much of the teaching delivered at UTC Leeds is centred around projects, many of which are applicable to the ‘real world’. For example, in English lessons you may learn to write a project brief for a project you are running with one of our Industry Partners. These experiences give you the opportunity to develop high-level employability skills such as problem-solving, leadership and teamwork, making you an ideal candidate for future employers.

  1. Like-Minded Community

Attending a UTC offers the opportunity to be surrounded by other young people with similar interests and passions to you. Everyone at UTC Leeds is here for a common reason: A passion for STEM. Being surrounded by like-minded individuals makes UTC Leeds an inspiring and supportive environment where students and staff are excited to attend each day.


These are just some of the reasons that we believe attending UTC is an outstanding option for young people who are striving for a career in STEM. If you would like to hear more about what makes us so special you can browse our website or contact us.

Could you be part of the next generation? Apply online now!

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