Apprenticeships offer a valid alternative to university, with the qualifications to match. If you choose a degree apprenticeship, you still get to graduate with your cap and gown, along with several years of work experience under your belt.
First and foremost, though, an apprenticeship is a job with substantial training and the development of transferable skills. It’s a way to earn and learn, gaining a real qualification, long-term career path and the possibility for higher earnings. And, best of all, no university debts: you’ll have been earning for the length of your apprenticeship and there are no tuition fees.
- Earn a salary while you’re training, gaining work experience and working towards a degree and/or professional qualifications
- Gain valuable experience working with industry experts in leading organisations
- You can reduce (or eliminate) your student debt
- It’s a great way to move on in your chosen career
- There is no upper age limit. Higher and Degree Apprenticeships can be offered to anyone over the age of 19. (You don’t need to be young or new to your organisation. However, you should be studying or training for a new or different role, rather than just receiving professional development for the job you’re already doing).
- Intermediate Apprenticeships are equivalent to GCSE level (Level 2) and Advanced Apprenticeships are equivalent to A-Levels (Level 3)
- Higher Apprenticeships incorporate qualifications that are equivalent to a foundation degree (levels 4 and 5). Apprentices can also study for qualifications at levels 6 and 7 that don’t include a full Bachelors or Master’s degree, for example, professional qualifications, postgraduate certificates or diplomas.
- Degree Apprenticeships can lead to a full Bachelor’s degree (Level 6), Master’s degree (Level 7) or even a doctorate (Level 8) on completion
An apprenticeship is not an easy option. You’ll be starting a challenging job and trying to prove yourself in the workplace, while getting to grips with studying for a degree. You will be expected to achieve academically and at work, managing your time and adjusting to longer hours with fewer holidays than at school or university. You might have to travel or relocate to find the right opportunity for you.
To find out which apprenticeship vacancies are available please visit Find an apprenticeship, the national website that advertises all apprenticeship vacancies at all levels. Also keep an eye on our website as we will be advertising apprenticeships being delivered at Bucks in partnership with local employers.
If you would like to know more about preparing for an apprenticeship, take a look at our ‘hints and tips’ sheet.