Studying with the VLA

When it comes to learning ‘one size’ most certainly does not fit all. Our state of the art learn portal helps to break down the barriers to learning by providing flexible methods – how, where and when you need it. It provides a range of resource types to suit all learning styles. No need for timely research. Everything you need to learn and gain your qualification is provided.


Our learning portal is designed specifically for busy people who just want to learn. It is easy to use and to navigate. There is no need for lengthy inductions. We will however provide you with a 30 minute call to explain the system and the process to achieve your qualification.


Not everyone learns the same way. Some people prefer to listen, some to watch and some to do. Our range of resources means that there is something for all learning styles. There is a mixture of elearning, workbooks, tools, templates and many more.


We provide learning content which provides you with the theory. You are then helped to understand how to apply these theories in practice. Our learning content includes a range of elearning modules and/or workbooks.


The greatest benefit of learning experiences is often the ability to share experiences and network with other learners. Our portal has a discussion board and chat room so that you can communicate with other learners and your tutor if you wish.


Our tutors will have both significant experience and a minimum of a degree level qualification in the topic they are supporting. You can communicate with them via your preferred method as little or as often as you need them.

Studying Online with the VLA

Below are some frequently asked questions. If you wish to ask us anything please call on 01349 853037. Alternatively you can contact us by email on

There are three factors we use to determine which course is most suitable for you:

1. What experience do you have of being a supervisor, manager or leader?

This is important because with a professional qualification you need to compare the learning with what you do in practice. Here is a guide:

A) NO SUPERVISORY EXPERIENCE: Study level 2 or level 3 if you are a confident learner.




2. What previous study have you undertaken?

There is no requirement to have any proof of previous study or qualification to be accepted. However, those who have experience of studying may find they can cope with a level higher.

3. What are your own work/personal commitments?

As the saying goes ‘life happens’. The beauty of our system is that you can start, take a break or finish at any time. If you don’t have much time just start with an Award.  When you have more time just upgrade to the Certificate, Diploma or Extended Diploma.

Well how long is a piece of string! Seriously though the beauty of our system of study  is that you can take as little or as long as you like.

We recently had two students finish a level 5 diploma.

– One took 3 years. Sounds a lot but when you throw life at it with promotion, change of role, a wedding and then maternity leave time will fly. We are so proud of this student who was determined to finish despite their challenges.

– Another student has just completed in record time – 3 months!  We could barely keep up with the assessments he was sending us.

We will go at your pace.  That said if nothing is happening you will receive some very gentle yet supportive nudges!

We usually recommend one unit (or topic) a month. That would require about 5 hours of study a week.

To pay in full click the Buy Now button on the website page of the qualification you wish to study.  You will receive access to the system within 24 hours.  We will then contact you to see if you require an induction call.

If the qualification is being paid through your organisation simply email us on and we will send an invoice.  We will need a contact name, email address, organisation address and a PO number (if applicable).

Fantastic! That’s no problem.

We will provide a free mapping service to provide you credit with what you have already been accredited for.

This means that we provide you with recognition for prior learning so that you don’t have to repeat study already completed.

This way you can upgrade your qualification and take time on the subjects you need to.

The issue of funding is always a contentious one.  Of course it depends on which country you  live in. Currently we are aware of the following part funding options:

VAT FREE – if you are paying for your qualification personally (ie not through an organisation) we are currently paying the VAT for you thus reducing the overall cost.

Flexible Training Opportunities – if your organisation is paying and is in Scotland and has less than 100 employees you may be entitled to half the cost:

In England there are loans for those aged 24 and over. See:

Benefits of management study

I was keen to gain a qualification to demonstrate the experience and knowledge I have gained as a manager. However, as I work in a remote work location distance learning was my only option. As it turned out, it provided me with the absolute perfect balance of difficulty, do-ability and support from the VLA.

David Munro, Project Manager, Sureclean – Level 5 Extended Diploma

I started my journey with the Virtual Learning Academy in late April. I had completed my CIPFA exams in 2012 but had no idea how I would get on when I started my on line learning for the Level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management. From the very start, I found Michelle and Catherine very helpful and they soon put me at my ease. Whenever I wasn’t sure about anything, they would always reply promptly and they definitely helped me reach my goal of completing the modules as quickly as I could. I found the learning material very easy to follow and well structured. Overall, I was very impressed with the professionalism shown by the VLA team and it was down to them as much as me, that I was able to complete the diploma in early September.

Gerry Kinsella, Middletown Centre of Autism