Frequently Asked Questions

If you can’t find your answer here, or have any other questions, please let us know and we’ll update this page. Here are the most common questions and answers:

What are learning themes?

The VCSE Academy programme is categorised into six themes to help you find the kind of learning you’re looking for. They also help you plan a series of sessions within a particular area to develop your skills at progressive levels of expertise. Occasionally courses may be categorised within more than one theme if the learning is relatively evenly divided between them.

The six themes are outlined below:

  • Money matters: income generation and finance, including fundraising, trading, crowdfunding, budgeting, and management accounts.
  • Leading your organisation: skills for trustees, managers and team leaders, including managing staff and volunteers, supervision and performance, managing change, decision-making, and dealing with conflict. Your organisation might be brand new and in development, or you might have been established for several years or decades.
  • Making an impact: monitoring and evaluation, including planning, user involvement, marketing, communications, social media, Theory of Change, measuring outputs and outcomes, and reporting.
  • Planning for the future: planning to make your organisation more resilient and sustainable, including research and analysis, innovation, new ways of working, and developing systems.
  • Voice and influence: equality, diversity and inclusion including community involvement and co-production (working on something together), enabling leadership, building, and using networks.
  • Partnership and collaboration: working together for better outcomes including joint delivery, assessing values and approaches, commissioning, subcontracting, and risk.

What do the different levels (Basic, Intermediate, Advanced) mean?

The three levels used to described learning events outline the steps of professional development you can pursue within a particular area of work:

  • Basic level learning events are designed to provide an introduction to a topic for people who are new to this area of work, or a refresher for people who have previous experience and are returning to this kind of activity after some time away.
  • Intermediate level learning events are designed to provide people with a higher level of knowledge and skills about a topic and additional tools and understanding to further their practical application. Intermediate courses are likely to be suitable for people working supporting or supervising colleagues in this area of work or developing their capabilities beyond the basics.
  • Advanced level learning events are designed to provide higher-level understanding about a topic and the skills and tools to lead and support colleagues in this area of work. They are likely to be suitable for people aiming to specialise in a particular field, take on organisation-wide responsibility or work with senior management or boards.

Offering learning events at these different levels allows individuals and organisations to build their capacity at the right stage for their development. It also means people can plan to advance their professional development intentionally by working through each level to the next.

Is the VCSE Academy part of Voscur?

The VCSE Academy is a service provided by Voscur. It’s an extension of our long-standing learning programme, updated to include all the types of learning and development we deliver directly, and increase our reach by working with other training providers, collaborating with delivery partners and our growing network of associates.

Establishing the VCSE Academy on its own platform means you can keep track of the courses you attend, the course materials you are given, and all the training and events in the year ahead. The booking process is more user-friendly than ever before.

The VCSE Academy also offers a wider geographical reach for partners and other training providers in the West of England, and still works hand-in-hand with Voscur’s other types of organisational development support. Find out more here.

How is my personal data managed and kept safe?

The VCSE Academy uses a clear and transparent Privacy Policy as well as strict compliance to relevant Data Protection (GDPR) legislation and information security procedures. Full details are set out in our privacy policy.

How do I cancel my booking?

To cancel your booking for a learning event email or call the team on 0117 909 9949. If you’d prefer to give your place to a colleague from your organisation instead of cancelling your booking, please email to let us know. We can update the registration details with the contact information for your colleague. Full details of our cancellation policy can be seen in terms and conditions.

Can my organisation be invoiced for a payment?

Yes, we can invoice your organisation for a payment if it’s not possible to pay by card online. It’s quicker and easier to pay with a debit or credit card as this confirms your place immediately and a payment receipt is sent to your email address. If this is not possible, however, please call us on 0117 909 9949 and we can book your place and send the invoice to your organisation.

Can I book a course without registering for an account?

Yes, you can book single courses without registering for an account. Just choose your course or learning event, click Register then complete your contact and if necessary payment details. However, setting up an account means you can:

  • Create a learning history.
  • Get updates by email about new learning events, networks and resources as soon as they’re available.
  • Book and pay for several courses at once by adding them to a shopping basket (coming soon with discounts for multiple bookings).
  • Keep track of your payments and bookings history.

You don’t have the type of learning session I want. Can I make a request?

We welcome your feedback and are keen to feed your requests and suggestions into our planning process for future public and/or tailored programmes. Please email with your suggestions.

If you’d like something specifically for your team or organisation, you can arrange tailored in-house learning for delivery at your office, online, or at a venue of your choice.