A degree apprenticeship enables you to gain a full undergraduate or master’s degree while you work. Degree apprenticeships take three to six years to complete, depending on the course level.
You’ll spend most of your time working and you’ll also study part-time at university. For example, you might go to university one or two days per week, or in short blocks, such as a week at a time. Overall, you spend about 20% of your time studying vs. 80% of your time working.
Degree apprenticeships work differently across the UK:
- England and Wales both offer degree apprenticeships, with the most options currently available in England.
- In Scotland, degree apprenticeships are known as Graduate Apprenticeships.
- Northern Ireland offers higher level apprenticeships (HLAs) that offer you qualifications upto Level 7 which is the equivalent of a master's degree. However, the majority are at Level 5 which is equivalent to a foundation degree.
- You’ll get real-life experience working alongside your degree.
- Your degree is fully paid for, so there’s no cost to you.
- You’ll get paid a salary just like a normal employee.
- You’ll need to balance working and studying at the same time.
- You won’t qualify for any student loans.
- Apprentices don’t always get the traditional ‘university experience’.
You apply for a degree apprenticeship in the same way you apply for a normal job. You’ll need to submit an application, which usually includes a CV and cover letter. If you’re also applying for university, you could use your personal statement as a starting point for your application.
Employers advertise degree apprenticeships throughout the year and there is no application cycle like there is with university. The vacancy will state when the application deadline is, and when the apprenticeship is due to start.
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