What are the expected apprenticeship hours?

Find out more about the hours you could be working as an apprentice and how long your apprenticeship might take to complete.

Apprenticeships are designed so you work and study at the same time. The exact hours of your apprenticeship will vary depending on the job you’re doing, and whether your apprenticeship is full-time or part-time.

    Full-time apprenticeships

    With a full-time apprenticeship, you can expect to work around 30 hours per week, plus a day of study either at your workplace, university, college, or online.

    In a typical week, you’ll spend four days at work and one at university, college, or a training provider. Some apprenticeships also do block learning, where you’ll study for a week at a time, for example. Just like any other job, your hours will be decided by you and your employer.

    Part-time apprenticeships

    As a part-time apprentice, you’ll work fewer hours over a longer period of time. A part-time degree apprenticeship might last four to six years instead of the usual three to five.

    Part-time apprenticeships are available for most apprenticeships and can offer flexibility if you have other commitments.


    Tayla, apprentice at RSA

    Before I started, I hadn’t realised how independent the study would be – there are no teachers telling you what to do and when, so you need to motivate yourself to make sure you stay on top of everything. But if you’re confident and strong minded, it’s a great way to get a qualification and start earning.

    Clare, Head of Learning at RSA

    An apprenticeship is an undertaking, but the benefits far outweigh the balancing that’s needed. While you’ll be expected to be productive at work and still study to gain your qualification, we do understand the commitment needed and make sure support is in place to develop you.

    What to expect

    You should receive two key documents.

    An apprenticeship agreement, outlining:

    A commitment statement, outlining:

    • how you'll study and what you'll learn (a day per week to study or block study)
    • the qualification you'll get on completing the apprenticeship
    • what to expect from your employer and training provider
    • how to resolve any queries or complaints you have
    How is my time split?
    Your employer will either want you to study for one day a week, known as day release, or alternate weeks of work with a full week of study, called block release.

    How long does an apprenticeship last?

    How long your apprenticeship lasts could be anything from 12 months to six years.

    Here’s how long you can typically expect each level of apprenticeship to last: 
    Table showing apprenticeship duration

    Interested in an apprenticeship?

    Register for smart alerts and we’ll keep you posted on the latest opportunities.

    Sign up now