Find out about graduate apprenticeships and how to find one.

Graduate apprenticeships are available in Scotland and allow you to gain a degree while getting industry experience and earning a salary. They’re available at a range of different levels:

  • SCQF Level 8- equivalent to a higher national diploma (HND) or an SVQ 4
  • SCQF Level 10- equivalent to an undergraduate degree
  • SCQF Level 11- equivalent to a master’s degree

What are the entry requirements for a graduate apprenticeship?

To apply for a graduate apprenticeship, you need to:

  • Be aged 16 or over – there is no upper age limit. In some roles, you need to be over 18 for health and safety reasons
  • be a Scottish resident
  • have the right to live and work in Scotland

An apprenticeship is like a real job, but with a study element, so you’ll need to satisfy any requirements from the employer and the training provider. It’s not just about grades. It’s also about showing a willingness to learn and passion for the subject you’ll be taking.

If you’re not ready for a graduate apprenticeship, there are also:

How do graduate apprenticeships work?

A graduate apprenticeship is like a job, but you’ll also get a degree at the same time. You’ll spend most of your time doing on-the-job training and the rest studying with a university your employer is partnered with.

There will be no cost to you, but you will need to apply for SAAS funding each year of your apprenticeship. The fees are paid directly to your uni or college.

Amy, apprentice at Leonardo

A graduate apprenticeship can be a great choice to help you transition from education to work. I was going down the university route, but a friend who was a year above me at school was working at Leonardo as an apprentice and loved it.

Erin, apprentice at University of Glasgow

I actually already have a degree, but I wish they’d had apprenticeship programmes back then as I’d have definitely opted for this route. I felt at a bit of a loss after graduating in terms of jobs to go for, so this opportunity came at the perfect time for me.

What industries are graduate apprenticeships available in?

Graduate apprenticeships are available in the following industries:

  • accounting
  • business management
  • construction and the built environment
  • cyber security
  • data science
  • early learning and childcare
  • engineering (civil, design and manufacture and instrumentation, measurement and control)
  • IT (management for business and software development)

Which industry is for you?

Not sure what industry you might want to do an apprenticeship in? Look at our industry guides for inspiration.

Browse by industry

The average salary of an apprentice in Scotland
Number of employers offering graduate apprenticeships in Scotland
**Skills Development Scotland
Percentage of graduate apprentices who would recommend GAs
**Skills Development Scotland
  • You’re an employee and get paid a salary, a holiday allowance, and sick pay
  • You’ll gain professional experience in your chosen career and put what you learn into practice daily
  • You won’t have to pay any costs towards your degree, as they’re funded by the Government
  • Many apprentices end up in permanent employment with the same company after the apprenticeship, or have the chance to move elsewhere
  • It’s a real job! You’ll have to get to work on time and keep up with what’s expected of you
  • You’ll need to manage your time so you can fit in working and studying.
  • With a graduate apprenticeship, life is than doing a traditional degree. Whilst there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people, it won’t be like going to uni full-time
  • You’ll get paid, but like any other job, you’ll be paying tax and national insurance. You need to manage your money and budget well

FAQs about graduate apprenticeships