Level 5 or Level 7


I completed my level 3 Diploma in HR Practice in 2012 and I was looking at completing my next line of study

Is it possible to skip Level 5 and move directly to Level 7, and what are the advantages /disadvantages of both.

 I am working as a HR Officer at present and have been in a HR role since 2010 


Thanks in advance for your assistance



  • Monica

    | 9 Posts


    5 Jan, 2015 20:37

    Hi Matt,

    I moved straight from the level 3 to level 7.  I did the level 3 when I was in a recruitment related role, and started the level 7 when I started my current HR generalist role (I self-funded).  So I didn't have as much HR generalist experience as you!

    I did the level 3 by distance learning, but did the level 7 part-time/day release, as I knew I would need support.

    I hope this helps, and reassures you a bit.

  • Thank you Monica for your reply, very helpful


  • Mike Morrison

    | 4176 Posts

    Chartered Fellow

    7 Jan, 2015 09:13


    is it possible - yes

    is it advised - no



    It is easy to focus on the "level" and believe that if you are eligible for one why do the other? It is not about "Levels", it is about content and steps. sure you can do the level 7 content, but the level 5 content is different. it takes a different perspective, and to some extent taking a level 7 after a 5 is easier.

    please do not get "hung-up" on the word "level" look at the contents and modules - they are different,

    anyone can build a bridge to cross a river.. but without strong foundations the bridge will not serve for purpose for very long! 

  • Thank you Mike, will take that advise also. still looking into it atm



  • Lesley

    | 393 Posts

    Chartered Member

    7 Jan, 2015 12:08

    Hi Matt,

    What "level" of study is appropriate may also vary depending on the rest of your background and also what sort of work you have been doing in your day job. You will need to look at the specific course content and also think about your career aims to understand what might be most helpful to you. 

    I did not study the Level 3 or 5 qualifications at all, but went straight into a master's degree (equivalent to Level 7). I already had an undergraduate degree in an unrelated discipline and had been working to a strategic level on HR/L&D project work for a few years, so this seemed the most suitable route for me. I had no difficulty with completing the course and did not feel I had missed out by not doing the lower-level courses.

  • Mike Morrison

    | 4176 Posts

    Chartered Fellow

    7 Jan, 2015 19:32

    In reply to Mike Morrison:

    Lesley, I did a study some years ago in the healthcare sector and with Henley Management College, we showed a significant productivity difference in people that completed all levels of a course in management - rather than skip if they were eligible - in your case and others "we don't know what we don't know". I am sure you feel you did ok, but imagine what you missed... you wont know!

    I have known HR directors go back and take cpp and gained a lot.

    from an academic point of view we go to "the next level", but from a knowledge and practitioner point of view, doing all stages is beneficial



  • Stacey

    | 76 Posts


    8 Jan, 2015 14:12

    I posted almost this same question a year ago!

    I did the level 3 10 years ago and have just now embarked on the level 7, skipping the level 5. I do have 10 years experience though, with the last year or so at Manager level.

    Level 7 is hard work, but I'm glad I went straight to it as I'm really identifying with it and glad to be doing it. There are a few people in my study group who have little HR experience and haven't done either the level 3 or 5 but do have undergrad degrees.

    Good luck :)

  • Steve Bridger

    | 7585 Posts

    Community Manager

    8 Jan, 2015 14:25

    Hi Stacey - you did indeed; here.
  • Thank you one and all, I have a lot of thinking to do

  • Wendy

    | 13 Posts


    21 Jan, 2015 13:14

    Hi I did the Certificate in Personnel Practise in 2006 and only recently completed the Post Graduate Diploma in HRM (2014).  I have to say for me slowly slowly (catchy monkey) was best for me as it built my confidence and it is two different aspects of HR.   The CPP was the bread and butter of HR and all aspects of operations and the Diploma moved into the strategic management level.  Yes it can be done but for me it was better to do both.

    I did have an undergraduate degree and worked for serveral years in Sales and Marketing previous to HR but still felt it was right course of action as I wanted to experience all aspects of HR and build my career.  Obviously my age is catching up with me but I would not change a thing.

    Hope this helps.

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