Apprenticeships combine practical training in a job with study. Apprenticeships take 1 to 4 years to complete depending on their level

As an apprentice you’ll:

Levels of apprenticeship

An apprenticeship has an equivalent education level and can be



Equivalent educational level



5 GCSE passes at grades A* to C



2 A level passes


4,5,6 and 7

Foundation degree and above


6 and 7

Bachelor’s or master’s degree

Who can apply

You can apply for an apprenticeship while you’re still at school. To start one, you’ll need to be:

  • 16 or over
  • living in England
  • not in full-time education

Higher Apprenticeships

Higher apprenticeships offer a work-based learning programme and lead to a nationally recognised qualification at one of the following:

  • a level 4 and 5 - equivalent to a higher education certificate, higher education diploma or a foundation degree
  • a level 6 - equivalent to a bachelor degree
  • Over 40 different subjects are currently covered, representing hundreds of job roles.

New Degree Apprenticeships – places available from September 2015

Degree Apprenticeships have been created by employers in collaboration with universities with government backing to give young people the opportunity to complete a full honours degree alongside their employment. They will not pay student fees, and will earn a wage throughout.

The 13 degree apprenticeships are in:

  • chartered surveying
  • electronic systems engineering
  • aerospace engineering
  • aerospace software development
  • defence systems engineering
  • laboratory science
  • nuclear
  • power engineering
  • public relations
  • digital
  • automotive engineering
  • banking relationship manager
  • construction

A number of employers involved in the Tech Partnership have committed to offering Degree Apprenticeships, including Accenture, BT, Capgemini, CGI, Ford, Fujitsu, GlaxoSmithKline, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), Hewlett Packard, IBM, John Lewis, Lloyds Banking Group, Network Rail and Tata Consulting Services.

The following universities are working with employers to offer the degree:

  • Aston University
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Greenwich
  • Loughborough University
  • The Manchester Metropolitan University
  • University College London
  • University West England
  • University of Winchester

Nestle and Barclays become first companies to implement Degree Apprenticeship

Becoming a chartered manager is the highest accreditation that can be achieved in the management profession and within weeks, Virgin Media, the Civil Service and many other employers will be taking on new management apprentices.

Each apprentice will earn a degree in management and business and become a Chartered Manager. The learning programme was developed by the CMI and the Chartered Association of Business Schools. Each apprentice will also become a member of the CMI.

These new apprenticeships could provide a huge economic boost to British organisations, with the latest CMI research finding that on average, chartered managers each add £391,000 of value to their employers.

There are now nine education institutions currently offering the Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship to employers, including:

  • Aston Business School
  • BPP University
  • Bristol Business School
  • Hertfordshire Business School
  • Lord Ashcroft International Business School, Anglia Ruskin University
  • Manchester Metropolitan University Business School
  • Nottingham Business School
  • Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University
  • Southampton Solent University, School of Business and Law


Degree apprenticeships will follow the apprenticeship trailblazer funding model which government is currently trialling. As part of this trial, government is contributing two thirds of the total cost of the degree course and any external training and assessment, up to a cap, with employers contributing the other third; then there is an additional incentive for small businesses. As with other apprenticeships, apprentices themselves do not pay for training costs or student fees.

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