Overview top

This course is aimed at developing social skills to enable learners to manage their emotions and relationships better. In addition, it will enable them to manage formal and informal situations with greater confidence and success.

Key areas at Entry Level include relationships, problem solving, developing teamwork skills, understanding the local community, how to live a healthy lifestyle, managing money, emotional literacy and health and wellbeing. At Level 1 key areas include all of the above as well as personal identity, anxiety management, confidence building, interpersonal skills, citizenship and leadership. Learners are involved in selecting interesting and relevant units from the Edexcel Personal and Social Development course. We work on these through various activities whilst striking the balance between enjoyment and personal challenge.

The qualification forms part of a holistic Study Programme which also includes Tutorial, Maths*, English*, Autism specific personal progress and work experience.

*Some learners are expected to do a GCSE in one or both of these subjects. This depends on their entry qualifications and initial assessment.

Entry Requirements top

This course is for learners with autistic traits who are experiencing significant barriers to friendships and other social experiences. It is for learners who would like support to understand basic emotions of themselves or others and how to deal with those emotions.

It is a natural progression from other Interface courses namely Independence Skills or from school or a specialist college.

To complete the portfolio it is preferable that they can demonstrate basic literacy skills though we will make reasonable adjustments to assessment methods and differentiate assessment methods where appropriate.

Learners should be willing to

  • Work on their personal barriers
  • Use community facilities with support
  • Follow basic health and safety related instructions

We expect good attendance so that learners can do their best but we understand that some medical needs prevent this.

We seek to provide an inclusive learning environment and to make reasonable adjustments that maximise learning and wellbeing. If you have any suggestions on how we can improve this, please get in touch.

We promote a positive approach to behaviour by trying to understand difficult behaviour but we expect our learners to do their best by behaving in a kind and safe manner.

*If you do not meet these criteria, please contact us on 0191 427 3900 or email info@stc.ac.uk

Assessment top

Assessment takes place through building a portfolio of evidence and may include teamwork, practical tasks, projects, worksheets, presentations, role plays, games, question, and answer.

The maths and English parts of the programme have formal assessments but we do a lot of preparation with learners to reduce their anxiety.

Professional Opportunities top

Learners can progress on to a range of courses depending on their abilities and needs. Options in Interface include

  • Entry level (or higher) Independence Skills
  • Supported Internship

There are full time and part time options in our Supported Learning department.

Some learners may be ready to do a level one course or higher in the main college with or without ongoing access to Interface.

Further Information top

Any learner interested in doing this course should contact the Interface team to arrange an initial visit. We then seek detailed information about learners’ needs and they are invited in for a taster day. This is all crucial for helping the learner decide if this course is for them and enables the staff to decide if the students’ needs can be met on the course. Funding and support including the role of Education Health Care Plans will be discussed.

All learners have a detailed Individual Learning Plan which clearly states and regularly reviews their needs to all relevant staff. This includes an Individual Support Plan which involves the learner in giving staff a step by step plan to meeting their educational needs.

All learners are supported to set and review personal targets on a weekly basis.

The staff team are committed to understanding each learner’s behaviour and guiding them to more suitable alternatives where applicable.