Department for Education and Skills"Functional skills are practical skills in English, Mathematics and Information Communication Technology (ICT) that allow individuals to operate confidently, effectively and independently in life and work"
They are recognised as gateway qualifications, used in many existing apprenticeships and by students who may not yet have achieved a GCSE grade C or above; they are widely used in adult
English and Mathematics are essential subjects that are included in most training and education programmes. These are the fundamental skills that people need for their working and personal lives. People can study for the qualifications in practical ways and apply core skills to real-life situations.