GCSE Leisure and Tourism is a vocational GCSE introduced in September 2002. As it is relatively new and not quite as widely available as more traditional GCSEs, students – and, particularly, parents or guardians – may not understand what this qualification is all about.

Leisure and Tourism GCSE teaches you about travel, entertainment and tourism. It is a booming, thriving sector which appears set for further growth and the opportunities currently seem to be immense.

This GCSE will help you to consider whether or not a career within the travel and tourism industry is for you. You’ll gain knowledge and skills about the industry that will give you a head start on the career ladder, should you choose it. By default you’re studying activities people enjoy and how to make them enjoy them more, which in itself is pleasurable.

What can I expect from this GCSE?

  • A vocational approach. If learning from a textbook bores you, this practical GCSE will be right up your street. You will have the opportunity to plan and carry out investigations, go on trips to work places and visit some local tourist attractions.
  • You will cover a variety of topics such as key marketing tools; investigating tourism destinations; advertising impacts; what leisure means to different groups of people; how people travel; good customer service; company policies and more.
  • Flexibility and choice. Not only can you either pursue the single or double honours course but this GCSE also regularly allows you to choose which tasks you want to complete, meaning you can focus on those parts of the subject you find most interesting.
  • Fewer exams and more controlled assessment. So, if revising for exams is not your thing, this GCSE will be a nice change for you and a welcome break from the monotony. However, you must ensure you attend all your lessons to ensure you don’t miss out on any controlled assessment time.
  • You may become interested in pursuing the subject further. Many students who take this GCSE qualification go on to complete GCEs, VCEs, BTECs or GNVQs in the same subject or a similar one.
  • You will gain an insight into a ‘real world’ subject. If you are someone who prefers subjects that have a clear relevance to your future career then GCSE Leisure and Tourism will suit you down the ground. Everything you will be taught in this subject is relevant to the leisure and tourism industry. This subject definitely won’t have you wondering “when will I ever use this knowledge again?”
  • This qualification will open many doors to you. The leisure and tourism industry is one of the biggest and fastest growing sectors in the world, with a lot of variety. If you take this GCSE and then go on to pursue leisure and tourism you will be opening up many jobs for yourself such as travel consultant; fitness instructor; air cabin crew; resort representative; park ranger; venue manager and many more.

In summary, many students find GCSE Leisure and Tourism an interesting, exciting and useful qualification. If you are attracted to this industry and you’re willing to commit to this varied new course make sure you talk to a teacher or tutor to learn more about it and whether there are opportunities for you to study it.




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As an Englishman in Paris, I enjoy growing my knowledge of other languages and cultures. I'm interested in History, Economics, and Sociology and believe in the importance of continuous learning.