There is quite a lot of misinformation around apprenticeships in the UK. They’re increasing in popularity every year, but some people still don’t consider them a viable career option. A recent City and Guilds Groups study found most adults would still choose university over apprenticeships. This is despite most adults believing apprenticeships are better value for money, preparation for the workplace and skills development.
Apprenticeships are a great option at many stages of life, but they still don’t even come onto the radar for many people, often due to myths and misinformation. Below we’re looking at some of the most common myths around apprenticeships.
1) Apprenticeships are only for People who can’t make it to University
This is not remotely true. Thousands of people who apply for apprenticeships have A-level education, university education and some are graduates. University has been consistently sold to us as the best way to start your career, but this usually isn’t the case. Some people realise their degree is valuable but work-based learning and an apprenticeship are necessary to forge a successful career. Apprenticeships combine theory and practical learning, with a wage at the same time.
2) Apprenticeships are only for Labour-Based and Manual Work
Apprenticeships are available in a wide range of different areas. Labour-intensive and manual roles are possible through certain apprenticeships, but it is also possible to do apprenticeships in many different areas. There are over 600 different apprenticeship standards in the UK, including business administration, data science and learning and development. The number of opportunities and fields covered by apprenticeship programmes is extensive.
3) Apprenticeships don’t offer the same quality of Job Offer as University
Receiving your degree from your chosen university is an impressive achievement, but it isn’t essential a direct line to getting your dream job. Of course, apprenticeships don’t guarantee a job either, but you do have significant experience with your employer who took you on as an apprentice and many businesses are keen to keep the apprentices they train as employees due to the investment in skills involved. Finding work straight after university can be very difficult as many jobs ask for experience, something you gain through your apprenticeship.
4) Apprenticeship Qualifications aren’t Recognised
The apprenticeship scheme covers a wide range of different qualifications. They range from Level 2 (Intermediate) to Level 6 and 7 (Bachelors and Masters degree). Apprenticeships at each level have the same value and recognised equivalence as the academic qualification. Most apprentices complete a Level 3 qualification and while it is equivalent to A Levels, apprentices can gain a wide range of work-based skills and experience too.
5) Employers do not keep Apprentices On
Many people worry about doing an apprenticeship with an organisation and there being no job at the end of it. Most companies cannot guarantee their apprentices will be taken on in any capacity after they complete their training, but most will try and offer their apprentices a role or the chance to apply for a range of roles within the business. Apprenticeships are effective way of reducing staff turnover for employers, so it benefits them to keep apprentices on too. Not all apprentices are guaranteed a full-time job after their training, but the skills developed are often highly sought after and can be used elsewhere too.
Apprenticeships have changed significantly since they were first launched. They are a successful and effective way of gaining hands-on knowledge as well as a recognised high-level qualification while earning a wage at the same time. The myths about apprenticeships should simply be ignored and you should do you own research before taking your next step.