Apprenticeships: what's in a name?

Before trying to increase numbers, we have to define what actually qualifies as an apprenticeship

19 March 2015 / Jump to comment (1)

We seem to be in the middle of an apprenticeships 'arms race' between the three main political parties. They're all trying to outdo each other by pledging to create even more apprenticeships post-election.

Those promises are all well and good - and it's great to see so much enthusiasm around apprenticeships.

But instead of focusing on increasing the numbers, we need to start by understanding what qualifies as an apprenticeship.

What is an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships generally last from one to four years, and are a mix of paid work experience and classroom time.

They're available in a variety of areas, from social care to social media, and lead to a recognised qualification. They're also created directly with employers, which means apprentices gain the skills that businesses want and need.

With those kind of benefits, it's not hard to see why politicians are praising apprenticeships. But the apprenticeships brand is under threat because of confusing uses of the word.

This is an excerpt from a blog that originally appeared on the Huffington Post.

Read the full blog from Chris Jones >

Comments 1 Comment

David Anderson

22 March 2016

Its interesting that apprenticeships can be 1-4 years. one or two years seems like joke. The original craft apprenticeships in engineering were 7 years and then in the 20th Century went to 5 years and included craft, technician, technician engineer and chartered engineer. And simultaneously one studied for a City and Guilds Parts 1,2,3 and FTC or an ONC, HNC and or OND/HND. Then one could pursue a degree if ambitious enough. This magnificent system died and they are now trying to be built again - it's making a come back. It is like throwing the baby out with the bath water and it all comes down to government incompetence over various regimes.

Add your comment

All comments will be subject to moderation, please refer to the terms and conditions of the blog.


Our research reveals that three quarters of young people demand skills-based training to achieve their ambitions Read full research article