Course Information

Where is the course delivered?

  • Bridgwater campus

Who is the course for?

Choices for Independence is a programme for young people leaving a Specialist Residential or Special School Environment. It is aimed at meeting the needs of individuals with profound and/or complex needs.

What are the aims of the programme?

The main aim of the programme is to support the transition from school, through college, to future life. This is achieved by offering the opportunity to make choices in both class-based and realistic settings such as; College Restaurant, Learning Resource Centre and out in the Community. We focus on building effective Communication skills and use a range of technologies to ensure that our students are able to communicate as effectively as possible.

What does the course involve?

You will partake in a wide range of learning experiences throughout the curriculum. You will work with your tutor and support team to create an individualised programme to help you acquire transferable skills that will benefit all aspects of your life. You will have the opportunity to take part in many different learning opportunities as well as Intensive Interaction sessions, Physiotherapy sessions and Hydrotherapy. We use Somerset Total Communication and this is embedded in all of our work.

Tutorial curriculum:
You will have a  personal tutor and key worker with  you every day to support your learning. The personal tutors will have regular contact with parents and carers and will advocate on your behalf, both within the classroom and while using cross-College facilities.

A multi-sensory approach is used in learning situations which can include:

  • Skills for life: literacy/numeracy
  • IT
  • Cause and effect programmes
  • Self-awareness
  • Music
  • Intensive interaction
  • Tactile art
  • Use of sensory room
  • Physical therapies

Additional opportunities for infill to other programmes, for example:

  • Horticulture
  • Exercise to music
  • Life Skills

What makes this course special?

Bridgwater & Taunton College has a dedicated staff team, an excellent reputation and specialist facilities.

Entry Requirements

• Tolerate demands made by others on you
• Tolerate being part of a small group
• Stamina to attend for the nominated times of the programme i.e. 9.30am  - 3.30pm
• Communicate intentionally
• Sustain concentration for a short time
• Remember a learned response over a short period of time
• Communicate simple choices, likes and dislikes
• To have made sufficient progress during the preceding three years to  demonstrate that you will benefit from further teaching and opportunities for learning.

What are the assessment methods?

Initial Assessment - you will take part in an initial assessment to establish your starting point and agree your individual learning aims. You will have the opportunity to develop communication, life skills and self-awareness. You will be assessed through continuous one-to-one observation and by building a portfolio of evidence i.e. photographs, tapes and video.

How will I know I am making progress?

Weekly tutor feedback, 2-way target setting and reviews, subject reports, termly student/parent planning & progress reviews, transition reviews, annual end of year reports. The programme uses the system Recognising and recording progress and achievement (RARPA) to record your progress against individual targets agreed with you and the important people in your life.

How long is the course?

The programme is made up of four one year courses and students attend for three days a week.

Days are negotiated individually to provide the best 'match' for each student.

What are the progression options?

If you have made good progression then you will have the opportunity to study further on the Choices for Independence programme or you may go in to Social Services day centre provision or progress on to the Entry one course Progression for Life.

Further Information