11 jobs that don’t require a degree and how much you could make


It’s that time of year when everyone seems to be talking about getting their A Level and BTEC results, but you might be sitting there thinking the college route isn’t for you.

Or maybe you are looking for a career change and don’t want to spend a few years studying in a classroom.

According to research by Aviva, around 24% of former UK students regret going to college and while for some careers you’ll have to take the college route, here’s a list of the top 11 jobs that don’t require a degree – and there’s something for everyone.

From lawyers to air traffic controllers, Royal Navy officers and visual effects artists, there are plenty of jobs out there that you don’t need a degree for.

Instead, you may need to do an apprenticeship or pass a series of tests as part of your training for the different roles.

With wage data compiled from National Careers Service, here are the 11 best jobs in 2022 that don’t require a degree and how much you could be looking to earn.

1. Air traffic controller

Around the clock, air traffic controllers keep some of the busiest airspace in order and moving. The work is described as challenging and demanding but rewarding.

To be eligible for this role you must be over 18 and have at least 5 GCSEs or equivalent at Level 4 or above (formerly AC), including English and Maths.

Salary: £18,000 – £43,000

Lawyers advise their clients on the law and can specialize in many areas such as commercial law, criminal law, etc.

You can become a notary by learning on the job, since notary apprenticeships were given the green light in 2015.

Despite this, it is still a difficult course. You will need good A levels and pass difficult exams to pass, all taking around five to six years.

Salary: £25,000 – £100,000

3. Junior 2D Artist – Visual Effects

Junior 2D artists produce stunning visual effects and help senior VFX artists prepare assets for final shots.

Eventually, artists are employed by production companies and get to work on television series and movies.

A short course is available at the London MetFilm school, although some apprenticeships are also available.

Salary: £18,000 – £50,000

Lab technicians work in many fields, from forensics to medical science, and may even go into nuclear science.

The work varies, as you can set up experiments, log data, and more with true attention to detail.

All relevant science A-levels will help you break into the industry, while two-year apprenticeship programs can be found with some employers.

Salary: £17,000 – £30,000+

We all know a great deal about what police officers do, when they investigate crimes, prosecute criminals and try to make the country safer.

No training is required for a formal direct application, but you will need to pass physical and written tests.

Salary: £19,000 – £41,000

6. Environmental Conservation Officer

Climate change has never been more topical, with ECOs framing the outdoors while encouraging others to enjoy the environment around them.

They also manage wildlife habitats and monitor flood-prone rivers and coastal areas.

To achieve this, you can volunteer and apply for apprenticeships in environmental conservation.

Rather vague job title, people in this profession have a multitude of professions such as auditing, consulting, financial consulting, tax consulting, etc.

They work with clients from a wide range of industries, developing valuable business consulting skills.

Deloitte and PwC offer apprenticeships that help A-level students gain professional qualifications.

Salary: £18,000 – £80,000 (depending on specialty)

8. Computer Forensic Analyst

This job is cybersecurity, and the goal is to investigate and put an end to cybercrime.

This opens many doors, as you could work for the police, security services and more.

You can help stop crimes such as commercial espionage, theft, fraud, and even terrorism.

As the Internet grows and evolves, cybersecurity professionals are always in high demand, and industries that include energy companies, security services, and many others offer apprenticeships.

Salary: £25,000 – £50,000

A very important profession, the nuclear engineer ensures the safe operation of nuclear power plants.

The National Nuclear Lab offers apprenticeships and the Department of Defense has introduced a new undergraduate nuclear engineering apprenticeship.

Salary: £25,000 – £58,000

As we emerge from the pandemic, youth workers are essential in helping young people develop social skills while also working on themselves.

You could one day organize sports, be involved in council and work with the authorities.

The usual route into this industry is volunteering, but you can now enter via a youth work apprenticeship.

Salary: £18,000 – £33,000

We have all seen the advertisement of the Royal Navy, and it is true, the sectors are very widespread.

You can choose a specialist area which includes submarines, intelligence, mine warfare and more.

Typically, you will need five GCSEs from A* to C and two or three A levels.

You will also need to pass an aptitude and ability test, before taking a physical fitness test and interview.

A more rigorous assessment will ensure that you are capable both physically and mentally.

Salary: £27,300 – £46,000

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