About us

About TUC Education

TUC Education is the TUC's training organisation for workplace reps and union officers. It has an unrivalled reach into Britain's workplaces to provide education and training for workplace representatives.TUC Education aims to build the capacity of union reps to perform at the workplace and in the union, develop greater understanding of trade union policies and priorities, including equal opportunities, enhance study skills and personal confidence for all those who take part, make learning visible through accreditation and stimulate commitment to learning and progression.

In 2015, TUC Education trained 30,368 union workplace representatives and 667 union professionals through a network of further education colleges across the UK. Almost all affiliated unions participate in the programme and many commission tailored programmes within TUC Education units. 

Find out about our courses and what we offer: course information.

Learning materials

TUC Education develops and provides student materials for all TUC courses. To make sure they are up-to-date, courses are regularly revised and rewritten with the active involvement of practising trade union studies tutors and TUC policy experts.

Paid release for training for workplace reps, union safety reps and learning reps

Being a union rep is important and rewarding but it isn't always easy. Unions, government and employers know that training can help a great deal, Since 1979 the law has entitled union reps to paid time-off to attend TUC or union training courses. If you are a:

  • union workplace rep/shop steward
  • union health and safety rep or a
  • union learning rep

the core sources of those legal rights to facility time are:

  • The Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1992 (section 168)
  • The Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations 1977

Getting paid time-off

Ensure you request paid time-off for union rep training with sufficient notice to allow negotiation with your employer to take place. If there are problems and you would like more advice on agreeing time-off for your trade union work and the training associated with it, talk to a senior rep in your workplace. Failing that, ask your own full-time union officer for advice.

Qualifications and pathways

When you opt for a TUC Education course, you will be joining a high quality established programme of training that has benefited thousands of union reps. There are three different types of qualification:

  • Awards - usually the equivalent of five days learning
  • Certificates - usually the equivalent of TUC ten day courses
  • Diplomas - longer periods of learning through which reps can develop higher level skills and knowledge, usually 36 course days taken over an academic year

The TUC programme's awarding organisation is NOCN. Along with many other recognised vocational qualifications NOCN Awards, Certificates and Diplomas are part of the government approved Regulated Qualifications Framework.

Last modified: Wednesday, 3 May 2017, 4:40 PM