Care Worker

Job Description:

Care workers help vulnerable people manage their daily activities and live as independently as possible.

Job Category:
Health Care & Social Assistance

What you will do:

Your daily tasks will depend on the needs of the person you’re caring for.

If you’re helping someone who needs support to live at home on their own, you’ll:

  • Help with washing and dressing
  • Make food or help with eating
  • Get to know their interests and needs
  • Do household jobs, like washing clothes and shopping
  • Monitor their weight and record any concerns they have
  • Check they’re taking their prescribed medications
  • Support their physical and mental wellbeing through activities


You’ll need:

  • To be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

As well as:

  • Sensitivity and understanding
  • A desire to help people
  • The ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • Patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • The ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • To be thorough, pay attention to detail and adaptable to change
  • Customer service skills
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

School Subjects

To become a care worker in the UK, the specific GCSE subjects you need may vary depending on the employer and the level of care work you’re pursuing.

Generally, care worker positions do not typically require specific GCSE subjects, but having a good foundation in certain subjects can be beneficial for your communication, empathy, and overall understanding of the role. Here are some subjects that might be helpful:

  1. English Language: Good communication skills are essential in care work, as you’ll need to effectively communicate with both patients and their families, as well as colleagues and supervisors.
  2. Maths: Basic numeracy skills can be useful for tasks like measuring medication or calculating dosages.
  3. Health and Social Care: Some schools offer GCSEs in Health and Social Care, which can provide you with a foundational understanding of the industry and its practices.
  4. Psychology: This subject can help you develop insights into human behavior, emotions, and mental health, which are relevant in care work.
  5. Biology: A basic understanding of biology can be helpful for understanding medical terminology and health-related topics.

Further Education

You can get into this job through:

  • A college course
  • An apprenticeship
  • Volunteering
  • Applying directly


In the UK, for example, you could take a:

  • Level 1 Certificate in Health and Social Care
  • Level 2 Diploma in Care
  • T Level in Health

You could become a care worker by doing an adult care worker intermediate apprenticeship or a lead adult care worker advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements
There are no set entry requirements but it may help you to get in if you have:

  • Qualifications in English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • Qualifications from grade 9 to 12, or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

You could volunteer with an organisation that supports vulnerable people, such as a care home, charity, hospital or hospice.

Direct Application
You could apply directly and train on the job. You’ll find it useful to have experience of working with people.


Working Hours and Environment:

A typical week consists of 35-40 hours of work. You could be required to work evenings/weekends.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could:

  • Train in specific areas, like autism awareness, communication skills or supporting people with dementia.
  • Become a lead care worker. You can also move into more senior jobs, like managing people or services, if you get further qualifications.