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What is an apprenticeship?

Apprentices have the opportunity to earn while they learn, gain real life experience and improve their job prospects. They allow learners to combine work and study by mixing on-the-job training with classroom learning. Apprentices are employed to do a real job while studying for a formal qualification and by the end of their apprenticeship will hopefully have gained the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in their chosen career.

How many different types of apprenticeships are there?

There are more than 180 apprenticeships available across more than 80 industry sectors.

Earn while you learn

Apprenticeships give you the chance to learn - and gain nationally recognised qualifications - while getting a weekly wage.

Pay can vary, but all employed apprentices must receive a minimum of £4.30 per hour. Average pay is usually £170 per week.

How much will it cost?

Apprenticeships are funded by the Government and employer and do not cost the learner a penny. 

Typically, studying for a degree will cost the participant £9,000 per year in tuition fees, plus additional living expenses. It's estimated that an undergraduate could leave university with up to £50,000 worth of debt. However you won't start repayments until you earn a minimum of £21,000 a year.

Are there any drawbacks?

It’s not really a drawback, but you’ll have to judge whether you can commit to the demands of an apprenticeship as it does mean juggling work and study long-term - a period of one to five years.

How long do apprenticeships last for?

It varies. Most last between one and two years, though some take up to five. How long it takes will depend on the profession you choose, your level of ability and your employer’s needs.

Who can do them?

Apprenticeships are open to people aged 16 and over. Some apprenticeships will have their own eligability and selection requirements.

What qualifications do I need?

There are no fixed entry requirements for most apprenticeships. However, most will require some number of GCSEs, and higher or degree apprenticeships will ask for A-levels or an equivalent.

For apprenticeships above intermediate level, you may need to have completed a level 2 qualification - the level of qualification you would get by doing an intermediate apprenticeship in the same area.

What kind of jobs could I end up doing?

There are loads of different jobs available.You could be a music promotion manager, graphic designer, interior designer, software developer, web designer, boat builder, marine engineer or a Service Techniician.

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