Last updated: 23.04.23

What Level of Safeguarding Training Do I Need?

Undertaking safeguarding training is an essential part of fulfilling safeguarding responsibilities. Without training, you won’t be aware of the official procedures that you are expected to follow when you have a safeguarding concern or become involved in a safeguarding incident. You may also be unaware of certain signs that a vulnerable individual is being abused, exploited, neglected or mistreated, which could lead to a situation escalating when it could have been prevented.

A wide range of roles involve safeguarding responsibilities, from positions with very little contact with vulnerable individuals to positions like Designated Safeguarding Lead where you’re responsible for managing safeguarding systems and procedures. Because of these differences in what you actually need to know about safeguarding, there are different levels of safeguarding and types of training available that suit different situations.

Our collection of safeguarding courses covers a wide range of different topics, meeting the safeguarding training needs of those working with children, young people or adults. The content is designed to match the requirements of different job roles and safeguarding levels, so we have designed this guide to help you to select the most appropriate pathways for your learners.

What Is Safeguarding Training?

Safeguarding training involves learning the necessary information in order to fulfil the duty of care that you have to vulnerable individuals in a certain role. It provides you with the information you need to spot signs of things like abuse and exploitation and trains you to approach these situations safely and appropriately so that action can be taken to protect the person that is being harmed.

Many people have to undertake safeguarding training as part of their job, as there are a variety of roles with safeguarding responsibility where day-to-day work involves coming into contact with vulnerable people. This might be delivered in person or could be completed online, and may be given regularly or just when you start a new role.

Some roles involving safeguarding may just require you to have basic knowledge of how to handle and report a safeguarding concern, whilst others will require comprehensive knowledge of different safeguarding situations and the relevant social services that need to respond to them. For this reason, there are different levels of safeguarding training that have each been designed to match the level of safeguarding responsibility the learner has in their role.

Who Needs Safeguarding Training?

Whilst anyone can be the victim of things like abuse or exploitation and require safeguarding intervention, groups like children and vulnerable adults are the most at risk and therefore tend to require more safeguarding protection. Therefore, it is often people that work with children, young adults, the elderly and people with disabilities that require safeguarding training.

Healthcare professionals, social workers and people in the police force also require safeguarding training, as their roles make them more likely to interact with people that may be vulnerable to abuse or mistreatment. Professionals working for charities dealing with issues such as domestic abuse will also need training because of the nature of their role.

There is statutory guidance that highlights when a role has a duty of care and therefore requires safeguarding training to ensure that this duty is carried out as effectively as possible. If you work alongside other people and provide care, support or guidance to them in any way, you will likely require some level of safeguarding training.

Take a look at each section below to help you work out what level of training you need.

Safeguarding Level 1

What Is Level 1 Safeguarding Training?

Level 1 safeguarding training is the first and most basic level of training that you can undertake. It gives you an introduction to what safeguarding is and involves and outlines some of the main situations where intervention may be necessary.

At this level, learners need to be able to recognise signs and symptoms of abuse and neglect and know how to report it. It will give learners a firm understanding of what to do in the event of a safeguarding incident in order to keep anyone concerned safe.

Who Needs Level 1 Safeguarding Training?

From reporting concerns whilst maintaining victim confidentiality and being able to follow the procedure in a safeguarding incident, professionals undertaking Level 1 safeguarding training have important responsibilities when it comes to safeguarding. If you come into contact with vulnerable individuals in your role or carry out work that might bring cases of abuse, mistreatment or exploitation to your attention, you need Level 1 training so you know how to handle these cases.

Level 1 safeguarding training may also be required alongside higher levels of training for professionals that have more direct contact with vulnerable individuals 

Job roles that need Level 1 training may include administrative workers, receptionists, catering staff and cleaners, HR staff, health and safety officers, and drivers. In a healthcare setting, this might include laboratory staff, transport staff, porters, maintenance staff and volunteers.

Level 1 course available: Level 1 Safeguarding Everyone

Safeguarding Level 2

What Is Level 2 Safeguarding Training?

Level 2 safeguarding training will provide learners with the necessary skills needed to participate in a safeguarding enquiry and report and record their concerns to assist such enquiries. They will also gain insight and understanding into key safeguarding legislation and how it has been shaped through the years.

This information will help them to understand how safeguarding legislation applies to their role. They will also learn how to effectively communicate with individuals at risk and gain the knowledge to identify potential abuse.

Who Needs Level 2 Safeguarding Training?

The learners who require level 2 safeguarding training will have an increased number of safeguarding responsibilities, as well as the responsibilities required at Level 1. They may work directly with vulnerable individuals instead of just coming into contact with them and may build trust and relationships with these individuals in the context of their role.

Job roles that require Level 2 safeguarding training may include carers, teachers, sports coaches, managers in a care setting, employment advisors, ambulance workers (paramedics require Level 3), welfare rights workers, community pharmacists, rehabilitation workers, housing support officers and counsellors.

Level 2 courses available: Safeguarding Children Level 2, Safeguarding Adults Level 2, Safeguarding Everyone Level 2

Safeguarding Level 3

What Is Level 3 Safeguarding Training?

Undertaking Level 3 safeguarding training implies that the individual has an extremely active role in any safeguarding situation and requires the knowledge to help shape the safeguarding policies of their workplace. 

At this level, those responsible will be able to contribute and manage safeguarding plans for individuals. They will have direct contact with local services that deal with or support safeguarding cases and may be required to work alongside these services to decide how intervention should happen to protect a vulnerable individual.

Who Needs Level 3 Safeguarding Training?

This level of training is appropriate for those who have direct responsibility for investigating, reporting and recording any safeguarding concerns. Learners at this level not only require the same knowledge as those in Levels 1 and 2, but they will also learn to act as an effective advocate for a vulnerable child or adult and be able to confidently contribute to inter-agency assessments.

If you’re the designated safeguarding lead or safeguarding officer at your school, nursery or organisation, you will need at least a Level 3 safeguarding qualification.

Job roles that need Level 3 advanced safeguarding training may include social workers, care workers, doctors, GP, nurses and police officers, nursery managers, school nurses, mental health staff, safeguarding professionals and adult learning practitioners.

Level 3 courses available: Safeguarding Children Level 3, Safeguarding Adults Level 3, Safeguarding Everyone Level 3 Training Package

Why Is Safeguarding Training Important?

The most important reason why safeguarding training exists is that it prepares safeguarding professionals to do their job effectively. This helps to protect vulnerable individuals from harm by creating more opportunities for early intervention, advocacy and support, preventing things like abuse, neglect and exploitation or stopping them before they get worse.

Safeguarding training is an essential part of being prepared to take on the responsibilities of a safeguarding role. Without training, you may not be able to protect or advocate for the vulnerable individuals you work with, or may handle a situation incorrectly that could lead to serious consequences.

It’s also important to undertake safeguarding training so that you comply with relevant legislation. Professions like teaching and healthcare have legal duty of care requirements and failing to undertake safeguarding training may put you and the organisation or establishment you work for at risk of being sued.

Undertaking regular safeguarding training, no matter the level, will also make you better at your job. Whether you work directly with vulnerable individuals or only occasionally interact with them in your role, completing safeguarding training will make you better prepared to deal with situations where someone might be at risk of harm, help you to feel more confident dealing with safeguarding concerns, and also ensure that you’re fulfilling your duty of care responsibility as much as possible.


How long does a safeguarding certificate last?

Many Safeguarding training courses give you a certificate when you complete them to indicate your qualification, but most of these don’t have an expiration date. Guidance is different between providers, but the general rule is that you should retake safeguarding training every two years.

If your role has a high level of safeguarding responsibility, you will likely be required to undertake refresher training courses more frequently to keep up to date with the latest guidance and legislation.

How often should Level 3 safeguarding practitioners receive refresher training as a minimum?

Different training providers produce slightly different safeguarding courses at each level, which means that there’s no standardised guidance on how often you need to receive refresher training for Level 3 safeguarding. The general guidance is that training should be refreshed every 2 years, but as a Level 3 practitioner, you may need to undertake more frequent or specialised training to be able to fulfil the requirements of your role.

What training does a designated safeguarding lead need?

Some training providers offer specific designated safeguarding lead training courses that offer a comprehensive look at all the different topics you’ll need knowledge of in your role. In other cases, at least Level 3 safeguarding training will prepare you for your responsibilities, as well as additional training on certain topics related to the people you work with.


Knowing the different safeguarding training levels and when each of them is required is the first step in organising safeguarding training, whether for yourself or a group of other people. The great news about Levels 1, 2 and 3 is that they’re all available from a range of training providers and easily accessible both online and in person, so it’s easier than ever to ensure you have the right safeguarding qualification.

If you’re looking for online safeguarding training, we offer a wide range of different safeguarding courses that include Levels 1, 2 and 3 safeguarding both adults and children.