Last Updated: Thursday, May 23, 2013

Learner FAQ

Click on the questions below to see their corresponding answers.

Learners

What types of Apprenticeships are there?

Apprenticeships are available in all sectors and industries throughout England. There are over 190 types of Apprenticeships in a range of industry sectors, from engineering to boat building, veterinary nursing to accountancy.

They generally fall into one of three categories: 

  • 'Apprenticeships' equivalent to GCSE level. 
  • 'Advanced Apprenticeships' equivalent to A-levels. 
  • 'Higher Apprenticeships' - the equivalent to a degree.

If I change employers, do I have to restart my Apprenticeship?

No - You can continue on the same Apprenticeship programme. If you are aged 19 and over and change employers after you have completed your first year, you will also be able to receive the national minimum wage.

How can I get started?

Think about where a qualification could take you in your career - decide on the kind of skills and knowledge that you will need to get ahead. If you are already employed, you may want to talk to your employer to help you with this

For further information and guidance on getting started on Apprenticeship, contact the apprenticeship support team by calling 01724 281111 or emailing apprenticeshipsupport@northlindsey.ac.uk

How do I find out about Apprenticeship opportunities?

North Lindsey College can help you identify the most appropriate Apprenticeship to meet your needs and we have close links with local employers that may require Apprentices. 

We will help you find an employer with an apprenticeship opportunity.


The National Apprenticeship Service also promotes Apprenticeships vacancies. This is a website whereby employers and learning providers can advertise and manage vacancies, and potential apprentices can search, apply and then manage their applications for Apprenticeships.


It is free and at www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship

 

What is a Traineeship

Not sure about an Apprenticeship? Need some work experience to help get a job? Think about a Traineeship. A Traineeship offers work experience, training and qualifications to help you get a job or Apprenticeship. Contact us to find out more on 01724 281111or employertraining@northlindsey.ac.uk

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What is an Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are an excellent way of gaining qualifications and workplace experience. As an employee, you can ‘earn as you learn’ and you gain practical skills from the workplace. You will be employed, earn a wage, and gain qualifications. An apprenticeship lasts a minimum of one year and some last longer. You do not need qualifications when you apply for many apprenticeships but you need to be willing to complete them during your apprenticeship.

How is learning done through an Apprenticeship?

An Apprenticeship is essentially a set of qualifications called a 'framework'. Most Apprenticeship frameworks follow a standard format that comprises:

  • A National Vocational Qualification. This is about assessing what you do in the workplace – can you do the job? Have you learnt the skills you need?

  • A Technical Certificate. Do you understand the ‘why’? Why do you do the job this way? Do you have the knowledge about your job.

  • Functional Skills. English, maths and sometimes IT. You may need to complete these dependent on your existing qualifications. We can offer different types of learning including e-learning, one to one support, and classroom learning.

The College provides training, assessment and support with the support of the employer as well to ensure the apprentice learns the knowledge and develops skills to do their job role and achieve the qualifications. Training can be classroom based, in a workshop or in a workplace, depending on the subject.

 

I have a degree - Can a university graduate do an Apprenticeship?

Yes - You can do an Apprenticeship but you will not be eligible for funding. That means your employer would have to pay your apprenticeship. From May 2017 the rules are changing and your employer may be able to drawn down funding to pay for your apprenticeship.

 

What are the advantages of an Apprenticeship?

Getting qualified while on the job can also mean:

  • You work better and more effectively
  • It can set you up to move into new and better jobs
  • You get paid a wage
  • You get to experience new and different challenges
  • Your existing skills and knowledge are recognised and can help you gain a qualification faster
  • You learn at your own pace and get support when you need it
  • You gain skills and knowledge which can be used across a range of jobs and industries.

Will an Apprenticeship give me a good career?

Career progression is excellent for apprentices, and over the course of their careers, those with an Apprenticeship earn, on average, £100,000 more than those without.


Some Apprenticeships already attract UCAS points. Once the Apprenticeship has finished there's the opportunity to carry on working, maybe get promoted or go on to higher education in a college or university.

 

Do I get to choose where to work?

Yes. It's up to you to choose an employer but North Lindsey College can help you decide. We will help you find an employer. You can apply for vacancies we have with employers. It is your choice.

Do I get paid?

All employed apprentices must receive a wage. https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates This provides up to date information on apprentice wages.

Some employers offer higher wages and some offer increases in wages once you are employed as an apprentice.

Do I have to pay tax and National Insurance?

As is the case of all employees aged over 16, all apprentices must still pay tax and national insurance on their income.

What's the role of the employer?

The employer employs you as a member of their staff with appropriate employment rights. The employer will give you an induction into the company and your role. They provide on-the-job training and pay your wages. Each apprentice has a mentor at work that will be responsible for helping you throughout your training.

What are the minimum and maximum work hours for an Apprentice?

An Apprentice must be offered a minimum of 30 hours of work per week to complete their apprenticeship. Generally, however, most Apprentices are employed full time.


Aspects of the employment agreement like how many hours an Apprentice is expected to work and the breaks to which they are entitled is determined by the employer and the Apprentice. Apprentices may work shifts or may work weekends, as your job role needs to fit in with the employers working environment.

Do I get holidays?

Like most other employees, you will be given at least 20 days' paid holiday per year as well as bank holidays.

I've already got a job - can I still do an Apprenticeship?

Yes. If your employer agrees, you can become an apprentice where you work now. We can advise you and your employer about your eligibility for an apprenticeship.

What time of year can I start?

You can apply at any time of year. When you begin the work-based training depends upon the availability of a position at an employer.

What's involved in the selection process?

The selection process is just like any other job application process. Employers vary in their recruitment processes but usually it will be at least one interview. Individuals may be put through a series of interviews, and in some cases, tests, to establish if they are the right fit for the role.

Can apprentices claim additional benefits (such as childcare)?

Yes. In some limited cases, apprentices can claim additional benefits. You can find out more on benefit claims at https://www.gov.uk/further-education-skills/apprenticeships.

Do I have to pay anything to become an apprentice?

No. While you are on an Apprenticeship, your employer pays you a salary and supports you whilst you undertake your training. Most of the training is 'on the job' within the workplace however the rest will be provided by North Lindsey College or in some cases it could all be undertaken by your employer.

What are my employment rights as an apprentice?

Apprentices are employed and therefore have the same rights as other employees. To find out more about your rights as an apprentice go to https://www.gov.uk/further-education-skills/apprenticeships.


You can also download a guide to your rights as an apprentice.

Can I join a trade union as an apprentice?

Yes. Most employed apprentices are entitled to join a trade union. To find out which trade union is relevant to your workplace, go to https://www.gov.uk/further-education-skills/apprenticeships.

What does it involve?

An Apprenticeship includes the following components: 

  • A minimum of 30 hours per week paid employment. 

  • A knowledge based element. 

  • A competence based element. 

  • Functional skills – English, maths and sometimes IT

  • A module on employment rights and responsibilities.

Are Apprentices eligible for maternity leave?

Yes. Like all employees, apprentices are entitled to statutory Maternity Leave with statutory Maternity Pay.

How long does it take?

The length of an Apprenticeship varies depending on prior skills levels of the apprentice, the qualification being obtained and industry sector. Generally, Apprenticeships take between one and four years to complete.

Is there an upper age limit for Apprenticeships?

No.

What are the entry requirements of an Apprenticeship?

Different Apprenticeships have different entry requirements. However the most important requirements are that:

  • You must be living in England and not taking part in full-time education.
  • You must be aged 16 or over.
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