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What is an apprenticeship?

  • Combine on-the-job training with classroom learning.
  • Study from intermediate (GCSE equivalent) to degree level.
  • Apprenticeships take between one and six years to complete.
  • You will earn at least the National Minimum Wage while you train.

How apprenticeships work

On an apprenticeship, you are employed to do a real job while studying for a formal qualification. By the end of your apprenticeship, you will hopefully have gained the skills and knowledge needed to either succeed in your chosen career or progress onto the next apprenticeship level. Apprentices in every role follow an approved study programme, which means you will gain a nationally recognised qualification at the end of your apprenticeship.

You will also be constantly developing your transferable skills, otherwise known as soft skills, which are highly valued by employers. These include communication, teamwork and problem solving, as well as knowledge of IT and the application of numbers.

Apprenticeship levels

There are four different levels of apprenticeship:

  • Intermediate - equivalent to five good GCSE passes.
  • Advanced - equivalent to two A-level passes.
  • Higher - equivalent to the first stages of higher education, such as a foundation degree.
  • Degree - comparable to a Bachelors or Masters degree. Find out more at degree apprenticeships (link to degree apprenticeship page)

Most job sectors offer apprenticeship opportunities in the UK, with a wide range of specific roles on offer within each.

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