Who are apprenticeships for?

Apprenticeships are a great route to get into your chosen career, and they're open to everyone over the age of 16.

Apprenticeships are available to everyone over the age of 16. Many people think that apprenticeships are only open to young people, but that's not the case. An apprenticeship may suit you if you:

  • enjoy both hands-on and classroom-based learning
  • are willing to commit to work and study at the same time
  • are ready to start work with an employer, and be based in the workplace most of the time
  • are ready to be assessed through a mix of assignments and written work, including essays, reports, and practical exercises

To be considered for an apprenticeship programme, you need to be:

  • aged 16 or over
  • living in the UK
  • not in full-time education

How do they work?

During an apprenticeship, you’ll spend 80% of the working week at your place of employment, clocking in hours and building up holiday pay, just like any other employee. For the rest of the time, you’ll study the theory behind what you’re doing at work. This can be through a university or college, or studying at work, usually one day a week. It’s down to whatever suits you and your employer best, so make sure you discuss it in your interview. 

You’ll earn a salary, and your course fees will be covered by your employer and the government. You just have to be willing to put in the work and manage your time between work and study. You'll need to demonstrate you can do your job effectively, by putting what you study into practice.

Discover which apprenticeship might suit you

Interested in an apprenticeship but not sure what you want to do? Get to know the different industries offering apprenticeships, from marketing to architecture and business management to engineering.

Explore industries

Hear from Chris and Tanisha about how they find their degree apprenticeships.

Pros and cons of an apprenticeship

    Here are some of the pros and cons of apprenticeships:

    Pros Cons
    You can earn and learn at the same time, while getting practical experience. It can be difficult to balance academic study with work commitments — you need to be well organised.
    You won't have to pay any tuition fees to gain your qualification. Although you will study a higher education qualification, your experience of student life will be different to those attending full-time courses at university or college.
    You will gain real knowledge, skills, and experience to help you succeed in the world of work. The initial apprenticeship wage you start on may be quite low compared to other employment, and you'll need to cover your day-to-day living costs. You'll also pay tax if you earn enough.


    Discover employers offering apprenticeships 

    Liking the sound of an apprenticeship but not sure where to begin looking? Get to know leading brands and the range of apprenticeships they offer. Everything from finance to engineering, and data analysis to project management.

    Explore employers 

    Support for disabled people taking an apprenticeship

    Being disabled shouldn’t limit your job or study choice, and apprenticeships can be a great route for you to get into your chosen career.

    Here’s our complete guide to disability support for apprentices to help you find out more.

    International students

    You can do an apprenticeship as an international student, but you need to be eligible to work in the UK and have the necessary visas. You need to look at the details of each apprenticeship vacancy and contact the university/college and employer to check their eligibility criteria.

    Sign up to Career Finder

    If you think an apprenticeship could be right for you, head over to Career Finder and search for apprenticeship vacancies.

    Go to Career Finder

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