About apprenticeships

An apprenticeship is a job that includes relevant training. Open to both new and existing employees of all ages, apprenticeships equip you with the technical knowledge and skills needed to progress in your career and make you an invaluable asset to your employer.

What is an apprenticeship?

Our apprenticeships allow you to:

  • Get relevant work experience
  • Gain a recognised qualification
  • Earn a wage.

You don't have to pay your tuition fees - your employer pays for these.

How does it work?

All apprenticeships help you acquire knowledge, skills and behaviours that are set out in an apprenticeship standard. There are three parts to every apprenticeship:

  • A programme of study
  • A paid job
  • An assessment at the end of the programme.

The minimum duration of an apprenticeship is 12 months and can last up to six years depending on the apprenticeship standard. An apprenticeship takes longer to complete than a full-time degree because of the commitment out of your contracted working hours.

A programme of study

As an apprentice, you’ll spend at least 20 per cent of your contracted work hours participating in off-the-job training that’s directly relevant to your apprenticeship (e.g. virtual online learning and attending face-to-face lectures). 

A paid job

You’ll spend the remaining 80 per cent of your time in on-the-job training. This training will take place in a job role related to your apprenticeship, and will help you develop the practical skills needed for your chosen career.

An assessment at the end of the programme

This is called an end-point assessment (EPA), often with a professional body such as the Chartered Management Institute.

Apprenticeship standards

Apprenticeship standards are developed by employer groups and approved by government to outline what work and study you will be doing as an apprentice and what is required to perform a specific job role. These standards are available at various levels up to PhD. At Surrey, we provide the educational aspects of degree apprenticeships at Level 6 and above:

Name Level Equivalent education level
Degree 6 Bachelors degree level
Degree 7 Masters degree
Degree 8 Postgraduate doctoral degree (PhD)

View a list of all levels on GOV.UK.

Apprenticeship standards also include an assessment plan, which explains how you will be assessed. Once you reach the end of your formal training you will complete the EPA, which is often linked to professional bodies, enabling you to gain professional recognition.

To view a list of all approved and upcoming apprenticeship standards visit the Institute of Apprenticeships website.