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Apprenticeships - Frequently Asked Questions

Why Apprenticeships?
Apprenticeships are a great way to improve the productivity, loyalty and quality of a workforce through on the job training and learning. Designed specifically around the occupational needs of your business. Apprenticeships are a cost effective way to deliver skills for new employees and experienced staff. As a result, apprentices are eager, motivated, flexible and loyal to the company that invests in them.

What is an Apprenticeship?
An Apprenticeship is not a qualification in itself but a number of separately certified qualifications, courses and workplace training, making up the framework. Apprenticeships develop practical and theoretical skills designed to help employees reach a high level of competency and performance.

How long does an Apprenticeship last?
The duration of an Apprenticeship depends on the framework being followed and the ability of the individual apprentice. An Apprenticeship can take between one and four years to complete depending on the level of Apprenticeship, the apprentice’s ability and the industry sector. As a guide, an Intermediate Level 2 Apprenticeship usually takes around 12 to 18 months and an Advanced Level 3 Apprenticeship around 24 months.

Who pays for the training?
Apprenticeship funding is available through the Skills Funding Agency to support the delivery of training, and can be accessed to support the development needs of new or existing employees. The Government funds Apprenticeship training in full for 16-18 year olds. For those aged over 19 training is part funded, with employers expected to make a contribution.

24+ Advanced Learning Loans - Coming in 2013

From 1st August 2013 there will no longer be any funding for qualifications at level 3 or above for anyone aged 24 or above on the first day of the course. Prospective learners will however be able to apply for a 24+ Advanced Learning Loan. These are similar to HE Student Loans and repayable once the learner is earning over £21000. Application forms will be available from April 2013. Please contact us for further information. Where Government funding is not available training can be funded entirely by the employer or employee.

What are the different types of Apprenticeships?

Apprenticeships are increasingly recognised as the gold standard for work-based training. With over 100,000 employers offering Apprenticeships in more than 160,000 locations, there are now more than 200 different types of Apprenticeships available supporting over 1,200 job roles. Myerscough College can deliver Apprenticeships at three different levels:
  • Intermediate Level 2 Apprenticeships - designed to build and consolidate knowledge and competence of operational roles within an industry.
  • Level 2 Apprenticeships are designed specifically with the employer in mind, making it easy to re-skill and up-skill an existing workforce as well as creating new Apprenticeship roles.
  • Advanced Level 3 Apprenticeships - perfect for people in a supervisory or managerial role, or for employees looking to attain the skills required to reach a supervisory or managerial level.
  • Advanced Level 3 Apprenticeships cover all aspects of learning designed to support career progression and managerial development.
  • Higher Level 4 Apprenticeships are a work-based route in to higher education. These are currently in development.

Who are Apprenticeships for?
Apprenticeships are for new and existing staff. They are open to all ages above 16 years old and not in full-time education, although Government funding is prioritised to certain groups. Individuals with a Level 4 or above qualification, are not eligible to receive funding for an Apprenticeship.

How is training delivered?
The Apprenticeship programme may involve 1:1 discussion, practical demonstration, assignment work, assessment - both practical and theory - online learning as well as formal taught sessions and workshops.

What about wages?

All apprentices are employed, and have a contract of employment. Ideally, a salary should be offered that reflects the job role and the skills and experience of the candidate, whilst recognising the training opportunity being offered. A minimum wage of £2.65 per hour must be paid to all apprentices who are under 19 or in the first year of their Apprenticeship. Apprentices in Agriculture and Production Horticulture are covered by special rules under the guidance of the Agricultural Wages Board and rates of pay may vary. Individuals not falling into these categories should be paid the National Minimum Wage. Employment must be for at least 30 hours per week.