VTCT Approved Logo

At Omni Academy we run qualifications awarded by the Vocational Training Charitable Trust (VTCT).

VTCT is a Government approved Awarding Body offering National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs), Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs) and other Vocationally Related Qualifications (VRQs). VTCT have been in existence for over forty years and has been at the forefront of developing the vocational system of qualifications in the UK. Their qualifications are recognised both nationally and in countries internationally and are very highly respected within the industry.

One of the benefits of working with VTCT qualifications is it allows us at Omni Academy the freedom to teach qualifying units individually, this really aids our flexible learning ethos.

Why Are Qualifications Important?

Requirements within the industry are rapidly changing with an emphasis on the importance of a qualified therapist. This not only applies to what salon owners are looking for but also what insurance companies will want proof of when deciding whether or not a therapist is eligible for insurance.

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Types of Certification


This is the highest grade of certification. A qualification is awarded by a government approved awarding body such as VTCT. This is proof that the course has been delivered to the highest quality and standards and in compliance with industry expectations and government regulations. The school will be regularly assessed by the exam board to check that this is maintained and these certificates will be recognised by all employers, clients and insurance companies. This is also a statement that the therapist has a deep enough knowledge, understanding and competency to work with their clients safely and achieve the best results.

A Training Centre Diploma

Some schools offer ‘Diploma’ certificates upon completion. The level of this certification really equates to that of a ‘Certificate of Attendance’. Any certificate that is issued by a school or college with their stamp alone is really only worth as much as the reputation that school has for the standards and quality of their training. It isn’t usually a form of certification that would be recognised by employers or even insurance companies.

Certificate of Attendance / CPD Certificate

This shows that you have attended and completed the training. This is most appropriate for ‘up-skill’ or CPD (Continual Professional Development) workshops which are designed to upgrade your existing knowledge and skills. A perfect example of such a course is our Gel Polish Application course which is designed to update existing manicure skills and teach additional skills, new to the industry.

Accredited Course Certificates

Some schools and colleges will offer courses which are accredited by an external body. In order to to do this the school will have been assessed to make sure that they are delivering courses at a standard and quality that the organisation is happy to link their reputation to. This can sometimes be enough to gain insurance and possibly employment. These certificates will look very similar to ‘Certificates of Attendance’ and ‘Training Centre Diplomas’ however there will also be a stamp from a reputable, external organisation such as BABTAC (British Association of Beauty Therapists and Cosmetologists). This gives the certificate much more credibility.

Types of Qualifications

There are two main types of recognised qualification within the industry in this country, NVQs and VRQs.
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National Vocational Qualifications. These are more publicly recognised. That is not to say that they are a higher qualification than VRQs, they are in fact totally equal, but people tend to be more familiar with this name. NVQs have a very fixed structure and must be completed over a certain period of time. There is little flexibility with the individual modules studied.

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Vocationally Recognised Qualifications. These are delivered and structured slightly differently to NVQs. Wtih VRQs treatments can be studied as stand alone qualifications, allowing our learners to choose a training route into the industry that is most approriate for them and where they want to go.

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Awards/Certificates of Unit

These are still qualifications but indicate that a lesser number of modules were required to achieve it.

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This is the highest level of qualification you can receive. These can be completed via NVQ and VRQ routes. It relates to the amount of modules completed to achieve the qualification and the unit value each of these modules hold.

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Qualifying in a Single Unit Only

There are times when there is only part of a qualification that you want to complete. This can be quite common with an experienced therapist who is looking to up-skill. In this situation it is possible, within VRQ qualifications, to study a single unit only, within a full qualification. This is recognised as a qualification in the selected single skill only and will be awarded as a ‘Certificate of Unit’. The certificate itself will look very much like a regular qualification from the exam board except it will list only the units that were achieved within that qualification.