Why should I use an FE college as my apprenticeship training provider?
Choosing the right type of training provider
Considering launching a Degree Apprenticeship programme? Before you begin your search for the ideal training provider, it's worth understanding how everything works and what the key considerations are for any early careers employer. Adrian Anderson, Chief Executive of UVAC (University Vocational Awards Council), has kindly outlined all of the vital information you need before entering the Degree Apprenticeship market...
Degree Apprenticeships are a relatively new member of the Apprenticeship family. Historically, Apprenticeship provision has been dominated by lower level programmes, level 2 (GCSE equivalent) and level 3 (A level equivalent).
In recent years, employers working with higher education partners and professional bodies and regulators (where appropriate) have developed Degree Apprenticeships at level 6 (bachelor’s degree) and level 7 (master’s degree). Apprenticeships at level 4 and 5 (equivalent to the first and second year of a degree) have also been developed.
Like Apprenticeships at other levels, Degree Apprentices are employed and learn on and off-the-job in order to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed to be occupationally competent. Through the programme Apprentices also gain a degree.
The same rules and requirements for Apprenticeships at other levels apply to Degree Apprenticeships. There are, however, a few differences. The individual Apprentice combines work with studying for the degree. In some cases Degree Apprenticeships use an integrated model where the degree embeds and delivers the End Point Assessment (EPA) of occupational competency. As Degree Apprenticeship is a higher education programme, higher education quality assurance systems also apply.
An increasingly wide range of Degree Apprenticeships have been developed in occupational areas including in digital, engineering, construction, nursing, life sciences, social work, policing and management. Around 100 universities/higher education institutions have successfully applied to the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers to deliver Apprenticeships, including Russell Group institutions. The number of Degree Apprenticeships being delivered is growing rapidly.
Employers are using Degree Apprenticeship for both new recruits and existing employees and for young people and older employees. When considering using Degree Apprenticeships, employers need to consider:
Skills Shortages and Productivity – Apprenticeships are primarily about supporting employers to train and develop new and existing staff to raise business performance and productivity. Employers should work with training providers to determine how best to use Degree Apprenticeship to train new staff needed to tackle skills shortages and train existing staff for new roles to raise business performance.
Equality and Diversity – Some Degree Apprenticeships are helping attract under-represented cohorts into particular occupations. More, however, needs to be done. What can you and your provider do to ensure your Apprenticeship provision is accessible to individuals from all backgrounds?
Delivery Approach – Institutions will deliver the programme in different ways. What approach best meets your needs and the Apprentice’s needs? Employers and individuals often find a blended approach where on and off the job learning is combined is a highly effective approach.
More information on Degree Apprenticeship, case studies, guidance, checklists and research papers are available from UVAC and the Centre for Degree Apprenticeships, a research and think-tank network convened and managed by UVAC.