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Home study advantages

The Advantages of Home Study

Home study, also known as distance learning is now an established part of education and training throughout the UK and other countries – in the US some of the largest training establishments are distance learning.

The quality of distance learning has greatly improved in the past few years, as both students and training companies have become more comfortable with the technology, and as stories of best practices have been shared and duplicated.

Electacourse have been involved in home study/distance learning for many years – both as a company and from individual members of staff. One of our senior colleagues has been in the field for 20 years and in the past was responsible for the management and education of over a million US university students – all learning whilst at home.

Home study features a number of advantages.

Advantages include:

  • Accessibility for those living away from a training centre
  • No waste of time or other resources in transport, commuting to a central location for each class
  • Flexibility to study in any convenient location with an Internet connection
  • Self-paced learning: Quickly browse materials you have already mastered, and concentrate time and effort in areas containing new information and / or skills
  • Study materials at a personal speed and intensity, without having to wait for slower pace of the average classroom
  • Just-in-time learning; more opportunities to study the most current material available
  • Flexibility for those with irregular work schedules
  • Accessibility for those with restricted mobility
  • Accessibility for those with family responsibilities
  • Communication with other students (not yet a facility on Electacourse, but one we are planning to introduce)

Recent research has shown that the most significant factor helping students to succeed has been their ability to manage time. The more successful students reported spending time regularly studying and not leaving it until the last minute.

For the 17th Edition Course which concludes with the 2382-15 exam (rated by City & Guilds as requiring 35 hours of study), Electacourse recommend you are regularly achieving high scores with the exam simulator before putting yourself up for the exam.

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Electrical Trade Bodies

The Institution of Engineering and Technology was formed by the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) and the Institution of Incorporated Engineers (IIE) and now has more than 150,000 members worldwide. It is the largest professional engineering society in Europe and the second largest of its type in the world.

NICEIC is a trading name of Certsure an organisation which came out of a partnership between Electrical Safety First and the Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA). NICEIC acts as the electrical contracting industry’s independent voluntary regulatory body for electrical installation safety matters throughout the UK and maintains and publishes registers of electrical contractors that have been assessed against scheme requirements, including the national electrical safety standard BS 7671, the IEE Wiring Regulations.

Founded over 100 years ago, the Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) is the UK’s largest and leading trade association representing electrical, electronic, installation engineering and building services companies.

NAPIT was formed in 1992 as the National Association for Professional Inspectors and Testers, with the aim of setting standards for industry. Since then NAPIT’s role has evolved and expanded to be one of the fastest growing Government Approved register holders for Part P Registered Domestic Electrical Installers (both full and defined scope) while continuing to serve the needs of those carrying out equipment testing and electrical installation and testing in commercial and industrial sectors.

Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors is the Leading Employers Trade Association for the Plumbing and Heating Industry in England and Wales.

The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) is the UK’s professional and technical body for all plumbing and heating professionals. It originated in 1906 as The Institute of Plumbers and since 1957 has been known as The Institute of Plumbing (IoP). CIPHE came into being on 4 June 2004 when IoP corporate members agreed that the new title better reflects their scope of work and firmly identifies plumbing and heating as an engineering discipline.

The British Standards Institute (BSI) provide organizations from all sectors with best practice solutions and standards that represent and support the needs of business and society in the UK and worldwide.

ELECSA started out as a joint venture between FENSA and the BBA to deliver an independent, no nonsense, certification scheme for tradesmen who undertake domestic electrical installation work. Such independent certification is required by Government as evidence that you are competent to undertake electrical work in accordance with the Building Act 1984, and specifically Approved Document P “Electrical safety in Dwellings”. Elecsa is now part of Certsure.

City and Guilds are the UK’s leading vocational awarding body. The City and Guilds 2382, 2391, 2394, 2395 and 2393 qualifications are of the most importance to practising electricians.

Benchmark – now part of NAPIT are a certification organisation accredited by UKAS. Benchmark started out specialising in heating engineers, but was now increasingly certifying electricians for Domestic Installer and Part P work prior to them becoming part of NAPIT.

UKAS are the UK accreditation service. All organisations which offer professional and trades certification need to be authorised by UKAS.

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Electacourse Brexit Statement

Electacourse are a leading provider of electrical training for people wishing to work as electricians in the UK.  Following the recent referendum on EU membership, the situation currently remains the same and there is no change to the Electacourse role or mission.

Electacourse will continue to monitor the situation closely by working with trade organisations and expert tutors and lecturers in the UK and Europe, but our current expectation is that very little will change from a training point of view.

Before the UK joined the European Union, the country welcomed skilled workers from all over the world including Europe. It is anticipated that the strong demand from businesses in the UK for electricians will continue and that freedom of movement for UK and European citizens will continue as it has done for over 70 years.

Wages for skilled and qualified electricians continues to rise in the UK to the benefit of both British citizens and skilled electricians from elsewhere in the world.

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How to become an electrician in the UK

The electrical industry in the UK has recognised formal qualifications that provide a clear qualification route for an electrician whether or not they are a new entrant, already experienced or have overseas qualifications.


Electacourse strongly recommend you contact electrotechnical industry bodies and organisations to confirm the qualifications required for becoming an electrician in the UK (link below) for the work which you plan to undertake, but the Electacourse summary understanding of the process of becoming qualified to work as an electrician in the UK is:

All people who are working unsupervised as a fully qualified electrician in the electrotechnical sector need to be qualified to the level of the industry-recognised NVQ level 3 qualifications. How you get to this level is dependent on your status.

For people who want to work only on domestic electrical installations, there is a lower threshold alternative of becoming registered on a self-certification scheme (run by Elecsa, Benchmark and others) who may be able to undertake and self-certify their work on domestic installations. See below the information about Part P and qualifying as a domestic installer.

Fully Qualified Electrician

To become a fully qualified electrician able to do industrial, commercial and not just domestic work, the following are the routes to qualification:

  1. For all new entrants to become recognised as an electrician, the Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Installing Electrotechnical systems and equipment (building structures and the environment) is required. This diploma can be obtained by undertaking study either with or without employer sponsorship at Further Education colleges or private training providers. By the nature of the practical requirement of some parts of electrical training, it is not possible to undertake all elements of this qualification by self-study alone.
  2. For individuals who have some previous experience whether in the UK or elsewhere, they need an interview with an assessor to develop an individual assessment plan without necessarily the need to go back to college to train in the classroom, (see AM2 on AM2 assessment is administered by NET ( We recommend that even if you have no electrical installation employment experience but have completed a college course, you seek advice from NET on final qualification requirements. AM2 is normally part of NVQ Diplomas.
  3. If you are already qualified in another country, then for some countries there are special arrangements where equivalence between electrical qualifications has been established, the following website has more information –

Domestic Electrical Installer

Domestic Installer Part P Courses available from some providers are designed to prepare candidates for the self-certification scheme Part P Assessment. On successful completion of a Part P Assessment, electricians are qualified to self-certify their own electrical work on domestic installations.

Electacourse Courses

Electacourse publish the 18th Edition Course provides everything required to achieve the 18th Edition Wiring Regulations qualification as assessed by the City & Guilds 2382-158examination. This is an essential qualification for all UK electricians. It is also a general requirement (but not necessarily obligatory) for Domestic Installers. Optionally this course includes the City & Guilds 2382-18 18th Edition exam, we have partner examination centres throughout the UK.

Most of the other material which we publish at Electacourse is designed as preparation and revision material for the various City and Guilds examinations and are used by people who are taking these exams as part of their route to qualification and professional improvement as electricians.

We have courses and exam practice simulators which cover

On our website you will find links to our courses and to trade bodies and organisations which can provide complete information about becoming an electrician in the UK.  You may also find the information on useful.  On this site you will also find information about transferring your home country qualifications to UK qualifications.

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What is Part P?

Strange, but true: in the UK you do not need to be a fully qualified electrician to work on electrical installations in domestic properties. Electrical installation work on domestic properties in England and Wales is covered by Approved Document-Part P of the Building Regulations.

However if you are planning to do domestic electrical installation work, Electacourse strongly advise you to make contact with a qualified electrical contractor. You can find a contractor by taking this link: Electrical Installers – England and Wales. Scotland and N.Ireland don’t have single web pages to find electricians.

Part P is the section of the Building Regulations of England (not Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland) which relates to the design, installation, inspection, testing and certification of electrical work associated with dwellings (domestic properties) operating at low or extra low voltage (below 230V).

How is Part P administered?

Approved Document P requires that certain domestic electrical installation works need to be notified to the Local Authority Building Control. See the sample chapter from Electacourse Part P Course for a list of notifiable work.

Notification to Building Control of electrical work undertaken by a contractor or by the householder themselves,  applying directly to their local authority. This can be a time consuming and costly process both for the householder and the contractor. It is not commercially viable for an electrical contractor to operate in this way.

An electrical contractor would aim to join a scheme which will notify the authorities on the householder’s behalf. These schemes are known as self-certification schemes. Access to these schemes are limited to firms, contractors and individuals who can demonstrate skills, experience and competency in domestic electrical installation.

Self-certification Scheme providers

The Government has approved electrical self-certification schemes to be operated by:


APHC (Plumbing and Heating Contractors) can certify electrical work only as an adjunct to or in connection with the primary activity of plumbing, heating etc.

Self-Certification Assessment

All of the self-certification scheme providers have different requirements, processes, methods and costs of assessment. You can take the links from the bullets above to each of the providers’ websites. They all share a common approach.

Assessment Day – Office review

On assessment day, the assessor will visit your office and examine your business documents and process

You may expect the assessor to review:


It is necessary to check with each scheme provider which qualifications they require; each scheme provider has different requirements. A minimum requirement for some providers can be 17th Edition City & Guilds 2382-15 (see Electacourse 17th Edition Course), it may also be required that Part P Assessment candidates can demonstrate qualifications as well as experience in inspection and testing.


You will need to have the most recent version of Building Regulations, not just Part P, but all other approved documents which apply to electrical installations. You will also need to have:

  • [amazon_textlink asin=’1849197695′ text=’Requirements for Electrical Installations, IET Wiring Regulations, BS 7671:2008+A3:2015′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’electacourse-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’b95d9cd5-06fa-11e7-babb-3b193d8ebe34′]
  • [amazon_textlink asin=’184919887X’ text=’On-Site Guide (BS 7671:2008+A3:2015)’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’electacourse-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’cfa46f37-06fa-11e7-a746-4f8c251c74e5′]
  • Health and Safety at Work Act Documentation
  • Risk Assessment Policy and completed documents
  • Complaints Procedure
  • Details of completed and outstanding works
  • Completed Domestic Electrical Installation Certificates


  • Working test equipment – and a demonstration of your ability to use them
  • Up to date maintenance and calibration reports


Evidence of public liability insurance for a minimum £2M.