A Degree Apprenticeship is similar to a Higher Apprenticeship. They differ by working towards Level 6 and Level 7 qualifications. Level 6 qualifications are equivalent to a full bachelor’s degree, and Level 7 to a master’s degree.
A Degree Apprenticeship works by an employer linking with a university to provide a combined course of studying and working. You apply to the employer directly as you would a regular job. So, nothing is stopping you applying for multiple apprenticeships, degree courses, and employment.
At the same time, you work out to which route you are most suited. The courses provide ‘employer-focused’ education so that those studying for a degree are also getting relevant work experience in their chosen field and developing their skills professionally.
Aimed primarily at 18 and 19-year-olds, as they leave school and college, Degree Apprenticeships are perfect for those who feel they have the academic ability to complete a degree and want to take their next step in the world of work (so that you don’t have to choose between the two).
Degree Apprenticeships are popular because they enable candidates of all ages to complete a degree course for free, while also earning a salary and gaining invaluable work experience in the field. Suppose you are somebody who has worried about the cost of going to university but has always wanted to study for a bachelor’s qualification. In that case, a Degree Apprenticeship is the perfect solution.
Unlike other lower levels of apprenticeship, degree apprenticeships are available in vocational subjects, which require strong academic knowledge. This means that the number of different apprenticeships is narrower than for intermediate or advanced apprenticeships. Some examples include nursing, aerospace engineering, and nuclear engineering. However, there are new apprentices coming out all the time so make sure to keep checking in your field of interest.
Degree apprenticeships help to build relationships between universities and local employers which, in the long run, will hopefully produce economic growth in the local area.
Launched in 2015, Degree Apprenticeships are a relatively new initiative. However, ‘Degree Apprenticeships: Realising Opportunities’ reported that by 2017 there were already 60 institutions in England and Wales offering Level 6 and 7 apprenticeships. Each apprenticeship looks different and can take anywhere between 3 and 7 years to complete.
There are significant skill gaps in UK employment, which means that employers are struggling to find employees with all the skills needed to complete the job. UK employers spent a total of £4.4 billion over the past 12 months trying to fix the skill gap in their businesses through recruitment, increased salaries, and temporary staff.
Degree Apprenticeships are a great route to solving this problem as they produce degree graduates who also have the employment experience needed in jobs. Those who complete a Degree Apprenticeship are more employable as you have the necessary skills for their workplace, and the work experience to know how to implement those skills.
Although it’s possible to obtain a degree-level qualification as part of a Higher Apprenticeship, Degree Apprenticeships will differ and go further in their academic reach by making the degree the central force of the programme.
For more information about degree-level study, visit our dedicated website for students and graduates.
Explore the links below to find out more.
At Employing an Apprenticeship, we are committed to ensuring everyone has access to equal opportunities. You can explore hundreds of roles available on our Apprenticeship Standards Search Tool.