Higher Level and Degree Apprenticeships are an alternative Higher Education route, combining employment and off-the-job training.
Having grown in popularity recently, more and more professions are becoming accessible via a Higher Level or Degree Apprenticeship.
An apprenticeship is a job. As an apprentice you are employed (usually to work a minimum of 30 hours per week) and paid a wage throughout your apprenticeship. Your employer also pays for your training, and depending on the apprenticeship you undertake, you could gain a formal qualification with no student debt.
But it’s not all about money – as an employee you are gaining invaluable work experience, developing skills and increasing your employability and confidence in the workplace.
How do apprenticeship levels compare with Higher Education levels?
|Level||Higher Education Qualification||Higher Education year of study||Higher/degree apprenticeship equivalent|
|Level Four||Higher Education Certificate||First year of undergraduate study||Higher apprenticeships|
|Level Five||Higher Education Diploma||Second year of undergraduate study|
|Level Six||Bachelor’s Degree||Final year of undergraduate studies||Degree apprenticeships|
|Level Seven||Master’s Degree||Postgraduate study|
Higher Level and Degree Apprenticeships can be equivalent to a level 4 or above qualification. Whilst you do not necessarily have to have completed an apprenticeship at a lower level to be considered for a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship, it is important to ensure you are suitably qualified and can present yourself to be the person that your prospective employer wants to hire and support through several years of working, training and learning.
For the right candidate, a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship can be an attractive option. However, it is worth bearing in mind that they are in relatively limited supply right now so the competition can be tough, just like any sought-after job or course.
Also, these Apprenticeships demand a hearty amount of dedication straight away and throughout. Once on the Apprenticeship you will need to balance training and studying alongside work (and life!), which can be challenging. This will certainly be different to what is viewed as a typical university ‘fresher’ lifestyle!
That said, if you are motivated and have carefully considered this option you can put yourself in a strong position to find, attain and successfully complete one of these attractive and worthwhile – yet challenging – programmes of work, training and study.