The Pros And Cons Of Degree Apprenticeships

An apprenticeship is a position that every business should seriously consider offering, as it allows businesses to directly train and have a hand in developing the future of their industry.

The ultimate expression of commitment to this ethos is the degree apprenticeship, which takes between three and six years to complete and provides a certified degree at the end through an accredited provider.

With commitment comes risk, and it is important to be sure that the course is right for both the business and the apprentice before both commit themselves. Here are some of the positives and negatives to think about.

Pro: Combines Work Experience With Academic Accreditation

Acquiring work experience is often the first big challenge for many university graduates, but a degree apprenticeship inherently sorts that out through the nature of the qualification.

This experience will also be inherently relevant, meaning that an apprentice will learn knowledge to help them work better but also get the experience to thrive academically, creating a virtuous cycle.

Con: Apprentices And Employers Need To Get The Balance Right

A degree apprenticeship is not a job with CPD commitments, nor is it a part-time degree with a day job. It takes commitment and discipline to manage both employment workloads and academic workloads in a way that not every person can manage.

It is important to carefully interview and discuss the course with your prospective apprentice before starting so both parties can help support each other.

Pro: Lower Cost

The degree apprenticeship is free on the apprentice’s side and there are programmes to help reduce the cost for employers, meaning that a full qualification costs significantly less than it would through the degree system.

At the same time, apprenticeships receive a salary so they do not have the same money concerns a lot of students can have that detracts from their study.

Con: It Is A Unique Experience

It is not quite a full-time job, as whilst the majority of an apprentice’s time will be spent working, their focus should be on education for at least a fifth of their time. At the same time, the process of studying is not quite like a university degree, nor is the experience quite the same.

This aspect needs to be made very clear. It has the work commitments of a full-time job, but the academic structure of a degree, and if people want to jump straight into a job or want the campus lifestyle, they may not find it through a degree apprenticeship.

What they will get instead is exceptionally rewarding, both financially and in terms of achievement and success.