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PET funds 250 different courses, in levels and subjects not usually available in prison.

Courses range from beekeeping to bookkeeping and include GCSEs, A Levels, degree-level study and vocational qualifications.

Discover 2018’s most popular courses

Here you’ll find some of our most popular courses, and a list of what else is on offer.

Visual Arts | NEC | Level 3 | Duration: 80 hours

Art History

The ‘Art History’ course helps learners to explore different styles and artistic movements and gain a better appreciation of art in its historical context. Covering art history from the 15th century to present, learners will approach painting, sculpture and architecture from different cultures with a creative and insightful mind.

The course contains five modules:

  1. Studying art history
    a. What is art history?
  2. An introduction to art history
    a. Discussing works of art
    b. Themes and topics in art
  3. Art in context
    a. Historical and cultural contexts
    b. How art is made and displayed
  4. Painting, sculpture and architecture in Italy and Flanders from c.1400 to c.1520
    a. Painting in Italy and Flanders from c.1400 to c.1520
    b. Sculpture and architecture in Italy from c.1400 to c.1520
  5. Painting, sculpture and architecture in Europe and the USA from c.1906 to c.1980
    a. Painting in Europe and the USA from c.1906 to c.1980
    b. Sculpture and architecture in Europe and the USA from c.1906 to c.1980

Entry Requirements: None

Assignments: This course includes 12 written assignments. Learners are expected to discuss already existing works of art (style, form, content) from a list supplied with the course.

Exams: None

Prison Support Requirements: Support submission and completion of assignments

Tutor Support: Yes (12 months)

What’s Next? 

Find Out More: OCA modules

Beauty | Stonebridge | ABC | Level 3 | Duration: 140 hours

Beauty Make-Up Professional

This course is aimed at people who want to work in the beauty industry and become professional make-up artists, as well as those who want to improve their own make-up capabilities. It covers everything from face shapes and skin types, to cosmetics and corrective make-up techniques. No make-up kit is supplied so this would need to be separately sourced.

The course contains six units:

  1. Therapy Practice Skills
  2. The Skin
  3. Skin Types and Conditions
  4. Make-up and Tools
  5. Make-up Application
  6. Health and Safety

Entry Requirements: Level 2 English

Assignments: Six written assignments, one at the end of each unit. There is also a practical assignment which requires photographs to be taken of models who have been made over

Exams: No

Prison Support Requirements: 

Support completion and submission of assignments. Staff would also need to source make-up kit, comprising of:

Cleanser, Moisturiser, Face Primer, Beauty blender, Foundation, Setting sprays, Concealer/Corrector, Contour/Highlighting palette, Blush, Bronzer, Eye Shadows, Eye Liners, Eyebrow powders/pencil, Mascara, Lashes and glue (optional), Lip pencils, Lipstick/gloss, Makeup brushes.

Staff would also need to authorize and faciliate the photographs – models (staff or prisoners) would need to be made up and photographed.

Tutor Support: Yes

What’s Next? Business Start-UP (NEC), or Nail Technician Professional (Stonebridge)

Animal Care | The British Beekeepers’ Association | BBKA Certificate | Level 2

Beekeeping (Basic Assessment)

Animal Care | Compass Education | Level 2 | Duration: 120 hours

Birds Of Prey (Diploma)

This diploma covers raptors world-wide, including eagles, hawks, falcons, owls and vultures. The course explroes habitats, characteristics, origins and behaviours of various birds.

The course consists of six modules:

  1. Origins and Characteristics
  2. Eagles
  3. Hawks
  4. Falcons
  5. Owls
  6. Vultures

Entry Requirements: None

Assignments: There are assignments for each of the modules, all of which need to be passes in order to gain the diploma.

Exams: None

Prison Support Requirements: Support learners with submission of assignments, and facilitate communication between the learner and personal tutor.

Tutor Support: Yes

Find Out More: On Compass Education’s website here

Business and Management | NEC | AQA | AS-Level / Level 3

Business AS-Level

Sport and Fitness | HFE | REPs | Level 3 | Duration: 60 hours

Business Skills for the Fitness Professional

This course offers information for people who may become self-employed as a fitness professional. The course covers how to plan your business, marketing and paying tax.

The course consists of 10 modules:

  1. Tax and National Insurance
  2. Legal Obligations of Running a Business
  3. Brand Management
  4. Effective Marketing Skills and Strategies
  5. Generating Leads and Sales
  6. Performance Monitoring
  7. Business Planning
  8. Financial Management
  9. Cash Flow Forecasting
  10. Basic Accounting

Entry Requirements: In order to be certificated for this course, students must already possess an accredited Level 2 fitness instruction qualification.

Assignments: There are 2 assignments:

  1. Business Skills Case Stusy
  2. Business Skills Workbook

Exams: None

Prison Support Requirements: Submitting assignments

Tutor Support: Yes

What’s Next? HFE offer a range of similar Level 3 theory courses, including Nutrition for Physical Activity. For more business skills, you can consider NEC’s Business Start-Up, or Book-keeping Certificate. 

Find Out More: From HFE here 


Planning a business

Business and Management | NEC | Level 2 | Duration: 30 hours

Business Start-up (parts 1 and 2)

This course is designed to guide learners through the process of setting up their own business. The course offers practical advice and develops skills vital for planning, establishing and growing a business. Through two distinct, yet complementary courses (Part 1 and Part 2) the course explores if self-employment is right for you and provides the tools you need to consider your business idea in detail to develop a full business plan. It also covers topics vital to early success, including legal and financial issues, marketing and sales, customer service and quality.

The two parts of this are broken into several sub-topics:

Part 1-  Planning to start your own business

  • Topic 1: Is self-employment right for you?
  • Topic 2: Developing the business idea
  • Topic 3: Market research
  • Topic 4: Money matters
  • Topic 5: Sources of advice and support

Part 2 – Succeeding with your own business

  • Topic 1: Formalising your business
  • Topic 2: Finance
  • Topic 3: Marketing and selling
  • Topic 4: Customer service and quality

Entry Requirements: None

Assignments: There are 9 “progress checks”, 1 at the end of each topic

Exams: None

Prison Support Requirements: Support learners through the course and with submission of assignments. The course also contains a complementary CD, so whilst it is not necessary for the completion of the course, facilitating access to IT on a stand-alone PC would be beneficial)

Tutor Support: Yes – for six months from date of enrollment.

What’s Next? 

A skills based course, depending on the nature of your business (e.g Horticulture, Animal Care)

A practical course in management, management or finance

IGCSE or AS Level Business Studies

Find Out More: From NEC’s website here

Business and Management | NEC | Edexcel | GCSE / Level 2

Business Studies IGCSE

Visual Arts | Stonebridge | ABC | Level 3 | Duration: 225 hours


Calligraphy is a visual art related to writing. It is the design and execution of ornate lettering with a broad tip instrument, pen, or brush. This course has been designed to help students develop these skills although no writing materials are included and therefore must be sourced and paid for separately.

The course consists of 15 units:

  1. Getting Started
  2. Foundational Hand I – Starting Minuscules
  3. Foundational Hand II – Continuing Minuscules
  4. Foundational Hand III – Numerals and Skeletal Capitals
  5. Foundational Hand IV – Majuscules
  6. Layout
  7. Gothic Hand I – Minuscules
  8. Gothic Hand II – Majuscules
  9. Gothic Hand III – Variations & Layout
  10. Uncial Hand I – Uncial Alphabet
  11. Uncial Hand II – Project in Uncial
  12. Borders & Decoration
  13. Illumination
  14. Invitations and Posters
  15. Greeting Cards

Entry Requirements: None

Assignments: 15 written assignments, 1 at the end of each unit

Exams: None

Prison Support Requirements: Support completion and submission of assignments

Tutor Support: Yes

What’s Next? Drawing 1: Drawing Skills via the OCA

Find Out More: From Stonebridge here


Animal Care | Animal Care College | LASER | Level 2

Caring for Animals in Kennels and Catteries

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