How to…find a placement year

With the option of a taking a placement year as part of your course now available to the majority of level I students here’s our guide to finding and applying for a placement year.

Your Placement Year Search

It’s hard to know where to start with online searches and jobs boards so here are our recommended starting points if you’re looking for a placement year.

My Careers Centre is Hope’s online resource. Here you’ll find graduate jobs alongside student placements and internships. A quick search for ‘placement year’ in ‘Liverpool’ returned 286 results whilst just clicking the ‘placements’ list returned 664 opportunities.

Rate My Placement is a great resource specifically aimed at placement year students. You’ll find national and international opportunities alongside student reviews so you can get a real insight into what it’s really like working at the company you’re applying to. The majority of opportunities are with well known, blue chip companies so those willing to relocate for a job will have a higher chance of finding a role on here.

Talk to a Careers Adviser our team of qualified advisers can help you find opportunities suited to your course or career aims. With a wealth of experience we can help to identify companies that might be recruiting, expand (or narrow down) your options if you’re finding it hard to identify the right role for you and we’re here, free of charge, to help you every step of the way.

Target Jobs national opportunities from large graduate recruiters. Useful for those looking for a structured placement year with a well known company.

Your Applications


It can be easy to talk yourself out of applying for a role…but the 1 guarantee I can give you is that you definitely won’t get the job if you don’t apply. If you’ve looked at the job description and thought ‘I could do that’ and looked at the company and thought ‘sounds like an interesting place to work’ why not apply for the job?


  • spend time on your application.
  • make sure you’ve answered each question fully.
  • demonstrate how you fit the person specification (give examples to evidence what you’re saying).
  • do your research and detail why you want to work for that particular company.
  • get your application checked before you submit it (via Careers Express).


  • rush an application.
  • copy and paste from previous applications (it’s tempting but unless the question’s exactly the same you might not be fully answering the question posed to you. Even worse, you could be referencing the wrong company in your application!)
  • be put off if you don’t meet every single one of the criteria on a list – see it as a wish list… if you’re matching most & think you could do the job, give it a try.
  • leave an application until the deadline. Some roles will close ahead of an advertised closing date if they get a high volume of applications (an early application shows you’re organised and keen).

Final calls and new arrivals for The Careers Express


people standing and walking on stairs in mall

Career opportunities during the winter months, for students, has always reminded me of being at a train station at rush hour: that mad dash to catch a departing train or staring at the board, struggling to find which platform you need to be on in 5 minutes time or looking for a connection to get you there quicker when all you really want to do is get home and put your feet up!

Some of the best opportunities for career progression are very much like that over the festive period too! I’m here to explain the various comings and goings that you should consider before you take a well-earned Christmas break.


Final call for: Teacher Training

If you are Level H and would like to become a Teacher, places for teacher training are filling fast. In most cases, applying for teacher training before Christmas is an absolute must!

The majority of teacher training routes are provided by UCAS. However, providers like, Teach First, require you to apply directly to them.

If you would like advice about the existing routes into teaching or the application process you can still talk to us.


Arriving shortly: Apply 2

Any applicants who have had the misfortune of not securing a place on all three of their options for teacher training will soon be able to apply for remaining teacher training courses through UCAS – this is called Apply 2.


Departing shortly: Graduate Schemes

If you are Level H, a graduate scheme could be the ideal first step after university into employment. Graduate schemes tend to pay at least as well as a typical graduate’s first employment and during the recruitment process place less emphasis on work experience and more on their potential and strengths.

If this is something you wish to consider, acting now is essential, as the number of graduate schemes available for next year are becoming fewer and generally most will close in or around the festive period.


Departing shortly: Year in Industry Placement

Any Level I student even considering going on the Year in Industry Placement should source a vacancy and apply as son as possible.

Year in Industry can be a great way to:

  1. Build up your work experience;
  2. Make a career change; or,
  3. Simply to get a taste of graduate-level employment.

As with graduate schemes, large numbers of placements will close over the festive period.


The next option to arrive is: Masters Applications

Students regularly ask us when they should apply for Masters. Unfortunately, there is no universal answer. However, a large number of Masters will be open to apply for as early as now (or earlier) and could remain open as late as August (depending on spaces available). On the other hand, courses such as, Social Work, Psychology (in some cases), Pre-Registration Conversion courses, inter alia, can have earlier deadlines and are often more competitive.

Commonly, Masters are applied for directly through the university provider. However, the most sensible next step is to check with the institution and attend an open day. See below on for information on courses and student finance.


Arriving shortly is: Vacation Schemes and Internships

These are typically appropriate for Level C and I students although this shouldn’t deter Level H students enquiring. Vacation schemes can range from a taster day with a company right through to a few days, week or even a month in training/employment. They are a good way to familiarise yourself with work and for the company to test your suitability for a future position with them such as a graduate scheme or year in industry placement.


Still planning your journey?

This is a great time to visit the Careers and Employability Service if you are feeling undecided about what career direction or how to plan for your future. We can also give great advice on finding work experience and shadowing, writing a CV, cover letter, application form, interview or just for a chat!


The Service will be open until 3pm on Friday 20th of December and then re-open on 6th of January.

Contact us: 0151 291 3246   or

5 reasons why you should join a club or a society

Join a club or society and develop a range of skills that can boost your CV and help you stand out from the crowd.

Liverpool Hope University Blogs

University is often one of the best experiences in a person’s life. Not only do you have the chance to learn and progress in your chosen field, but you’ll also meet some amazing people and you’ll grow as a person. There’s so much more to university than just studying, so whether you’re a first or a third year, joining a club or society can really make your experience unforgettable. If we haven’t already convinced you here’s 5 reasons why you should join one…

1. The social life

A huge part of being a member of a club or society is the social element. You’ll have so many opportunities to bond with people who share common interests, and before you know it you’ll be life-long friends! From weekly meetings and fixtures to end of term tours, being a member will bring about countless social events.


2. Follow a passion

Joining a…

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What is a Placement Year?

Almost every undergraduate student (1st & 2nd year) now has the option of taking a placement year as part of their degree programme. Find out more about this exciting, and potentially life-changing opportunity in our latest blog… Read More

Considering a Graduate Career in Mental Health?

If you’re in your final year looking for a graduate training programme a lot of schemes have early closing dates and are recruiting now for June/July start dates. If you’re looking for a graduate job check out the vacancies currently available on My Careers Centre.

In this blog we’ll hear more about the graduate training programme, Think Ahead, from their on campus ambassador Philippa Karikari…

Your 3rd year can be an interesting point in your academic career. It is a time when you are preparing yourself for life on the outside world and the elusive graduate job market. Sometimes the sheer amount of possibilities available to you can seem daunting, confusing and a nightmare to navigate. However over the years the process is becoming more accessible for students from a range of backgrounds and universities to achieve some of the best possible jobs in the graduate market.

If you’re someone that is ready to work but is also looking to make an impact beyond an office role then a graduate career in Mental Health may be the one for you. Here are some key points and helpful tips to help you establish the next steps into post-uni life:

Matthew Griffin

Step One – How will a Grad Scheme work around my lifestyle?

The ‘Think Ahead’ Mental Health Graduate Programme offers a number of opportunities to work at NHS Trusts and Local Authorities across England. The scheme also offers the chance to move in between placements throughout the duration but will always be within the geographical area of your first few preferences. Most roles run during Monday-Friday with allocated time for study, allowing freedom and travel on the weekends. Additionally, for the first 6-weeks of training on the scheme food and accommodation will be provided for all participants. Think Ahead participants can also make additional arrangements for those living with dependents such as children during the programme.

Step Two – What does a Grad Scheme actually involve?

Many schemes offer great starting salaries along with the chance to study for an additional qualification. However, it is important when deciding the right scheme to assess whether you can make the most out of your time and how it could help develop your career.

On Think Ahead training is provided for the first 6 weeks giving you the chance to familiarise yourself with the role, engage with your peers and receive advice from top leaders and professionals in mental health. After this, you will be led by a consultant social worker and complete a postgraduate diploma in Social Work after your first year and a masters in Social Work after the second, allowing you to lead cases that will shape and impact the mental health challenge in your community. Starting salaries for qualified social workers range from £21,000-£30,000+ depending on your location. After which you may choose to qualify as an Best Interests Assessor or Approved Mental Health Professional or use your skills and qualifications to excel in other leadership sectors.

Rebecca WebsterStep Three – Do I need prior experience in the field?

No. The lucky thing about most graduate schemes is that they focus on potential and whether you possess the core values they look for.

In Think Ahead, some of the values that would help in your role include being adaptable, motivated and a good communicator. It is also important to have a genuine passion for improving and challenging the mental health stigma in our society.

Step Four – What if I have a mental health condition or a disability?

Think Ahead values are centered around being an inclusive and effective graduate employer and therefore encourages those with lived experience of health inequalities to apply to the scheme. Additional support and arrangements will be made at all stages of the process and placements when you apply.

Jan-Michael McIntoshStep Five – Am I Ready?

Absolutely. Now is your chance to make a difference in people’s lives and the chance to shape mental health policy. Remember, graduate life is all about putting yourself out there and making the most of the skills you’ve developed during your degree.

Have fun and enjoy your journey!

If you need more information about Think Ahead, or assistance with the application process, please contact Philippa at

think Ahead