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How to become an electrician?

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Becoming an electrician in the UK is a great career choice. It's a profession that requires specialised skills and knowledge and involves working on a variety of different electrical systems. An electrician is a skilled tradesperson who can help people live more convenient and comfortable lives. The role of an electrician is essential in the development of a country's infrastructure and the maintenance of the nation's electrical systems. Check out the rest of this article to find out more.

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Answer Adeosun
Feb 14, 23 · min read
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Routes to becoming an electrician in the UK 

There are different ways you can become an electrician in the UK, you could go through a university or college course, an apprenticeship, get a certification, or apply directly. 

Through a college course

When selecting an electrician program in the UK, it is important to research the different schools and programs available to ensure that they are properly accredited and offer quality training. Some of the important courses you may need to take include:

  • Level 2 Diploma in Access to Building Services Engineering (Electrical)
  • Level 2 and Level 3 Diploma in Electrical Installation
  • T Level in Building Services Engineering for Construction

Additionally, consider your interests and career goals when selecting a program to ensure that it is the right one for you. It is also important to consider the cost of the program, as well as the job prospects that may be available once you obtain your certification. A college course will qualify you to get into a trainee program that will take you towards getting certified as a bona fide electrician.

To gain entry into college for electrical-related courses, the requirements are either of the following:

  • 2 or more GCSE in grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs in grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs in grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths for a T level

Through apprenticeship training

Additionally, you may need to complete an apprenticeship program or work experience to gain additional skills and knowledge in the field. You would normally need 5 GCSEs in grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship. Some areas of focus for an apprenticeship could be the installation and maintenance electrician advanced apprenticeship or domestic electrician advanced apprenticeship. You could also train to become an electrician in the Royal army.

This route is probably the most preferred because you will earn as you are learning and there is apprenticeship funding for all ages of workers. City and Guild (C&G) is one such organisation that offers apprenticeship training to skilled workers in the UK.

Getting certification through experienced worker assessment

Electrical workers who have worked for up to 5 years without certification can apply for Experienced Worker Assessment which enables them to take the required certification test to get accredited and certified. 

You will need to obtain certification from an accredited institution. This typically requires completing a two-year training program that covers the basic principles of electricity, electrical systems and the safety regulations related to electrical work. After completing the training program, you will need to pass a certification exam to become an approved electrician. 

Direct application

This is applicable only if you have relevant experience, as an electrical engineer for example, and you can easily apply to get a job directly without additional certification.

Educational requirements

In order to become an electrician in the UK, you will need to complete an apprenticeship program, which offers you training in your profession while you earn a living. With the right training and credentials, you can become a successful electrician in the UK. Your educational requirements include

  1.  a technical or general education with courses in mathematics, English language and IT skills. 
  2. You should also have a working knowledge of Computer Aided Design and two other computer languages such as Visual Basic, C++ and Java. 

Physical Requirements

Your physical requirements include 

  1. having good eyesight with clear vision and colour perception, dexterity and strength.
  2. good grip strength as your hands are very important when working with power tools. You will also need to have a 
  3. good hearing acuity so that you can hear the sounds made by power tools when working on electrical installations.
  4. quick and precise when using your hands as it is necessary when working with power tools for installation purposes.

After completing your required education and training, you will be ready to start looking for employment opportunities as an electrician in the UK. Employers usually prefer applicants who have completed their apprenticeships since they know that they are qualified to work. 

Your chances of getting hired are greater if you have additional qualifications such as NVQ (National Vocational Qualification in England) or SVQ (Scottish Vocational Qualification) of level 2 or level 3 in construction or enterprise management. Once employed, you can improve your career prospects by gaining experience and earning promotions based on performance.

Daily tasks, roles, and characteristics of an electrician

As an electrician, you will be involved in many different tasks every day- some of which are dangerous and involve high levels of power tools usage. Some of these tasks include 

  1. replacing broken electrical fittings, 
  2. installing fire alarms, 
  3. switching off faulty electrical systems and testing circuits for faults using an electricity metre reading machine. 
  4. be aware of the safety regulations and laws related to electrical work and must be able to analyse and troubleshoot complex circuit designs. 
  5. have a good understanding of the fundamentals of electricity and electrical systems, as well as the equipment used to work on these systems. 
  6. be familiar with the different electrical code standards that are used in the UK. 
  7. be patient when doing your tasks as it takes time to complete them properly so that you can avoid unnecessary accidents that can cause injury or death for those using electrical equipment. 
  8. be respectful when speaking to people as it builds relationships that keep workers safe on-site and benefits customers. 
  9. having great interpersonal and problem-solving skills, 
  10. look for ways to stay informed on the latest developments in the field, as well as ways to expand your skills and knowledge. 


Becoming an electrician can be challenging if you're willing to work hard toward achieving your goals. However, completing your apprenticeship program will increase your chances of landing a job as an electrician in the UK thanks to your training and experience. If you do choose this path, remember to stay safe while working with electricity!

How to become an electrician in the UK?

We explain you how
HowTo step image

1. Take a college course.

College courses such as building service engineering or electrical installation can help you become an electrician in the UK. Once you are done with the course, you can apply for an apprenticeship which qualifies you to take a certification exam.

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