(This situation is also relevant to Australia) Unless the workforce was considerably more skilled and better qualified, the UK would slip out of the major players in the world economy and more specifically in the fundamentally important (for the UK) finance sector. Both the authoritative reports mentioned above also stated that UK employers in both the public and private sectors were saying that despite the students having completed at least 11 years education they had no 'employability' skills. New methods of organisation, new teaching and learning skills of APPLIED LEARNING were necessary and new qualifications that would be nationally and internationally recognised by the Higher Education. Institutes.This is a paper about a 'new' type of qualification in the UK; the '14-19 Diploma' which was introduced into all State schools over the last few years. The Diplomas are a combination of 'academic' and 'vocational' types of learning, and they are intended to include 'employability skills' and 'functional skills' relating to English, mathematics and ICT (information Communication Technology), placing the learning of these into a contextualised workplace situation. The Diploma consists of several constituent parts that build into a major two year learning programme which is intended to be (a) personalised learning and (b) preparation for the world of work at three levels of complexity. The Diplomas were introduced as a result of two major reviews of the education system: The Tomlinson Review and the Leitch Report. The latter stated that the UK would slip down the international standing in terms of qualifications held by the workforce in the developed world and would therefore lose international competitiveness in commerce and industry.