Apprenticeships

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Why us

Higher and degree apprenticeships are a high-quality alternative to a traditional university degree. They allow apprentices to achieve a higher education qualification while working full-time and gaining experience in the workplace. Birmingham City University’s apprenticeships build on our well-established reputation for delivering in-company training and development programmes, working with some of the country’s leading employers, including Jewson, Mitchells & Butlers and Greene King.

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How we support you

  • Business benefits

  • Using the levy

  • Who is eligible?

  • Business support

  • How does it work?

Business benefits

Offering apprenticeships can be a way for employers to attract high-quality new talent with a desire to progress to a Bachelor's or Master's degree level of education. It can also be a practical way to fill any skills gaps that may exist within the workforce, as the apprentices will be learning sector-specific skills from the start. Staff who have trained with a company may have greater loyalty, and be more likely to stay for a long period, providing opportunities for businesses to produce their own leaders from within.

Using the levy

Apprenticeships will be funded through the Apprenticeship Levy, which is paid by all UK employers with a total payroll of over £3 million a year. Employers that are subject to the levy can claim back their payments to fund apprenticeships, and all employers can claim up to 90 per cent of the cost of training and assessing apprenticeships. There is no cost to the apprentice.

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Who is eligible?

Anyone aged over 16 and not in full-time education, who spends at least 50% of their working hours in England, may apply for an apprenticeship. Employers may offer apprenticeships to new recruits or existing employees; these apprenticeships must include a genuine job with a contract lasting for at least the length of the period of study, and pay an apprentice wage.

Business support

All businesses who work with us on a degree apprenticeship are given a named contact who they can speak to at any time with any questions or concerns. All participants are given a mentor and receive the same levels of academic and pastoral support as our full-time students, including access to the Centre for Academic Success, which can provide help with skills such as mathematics and academic writing.

HOW DO HIGHER OR DEGREE APPRENTICESHIPS WORK?

Apprentices on these programmes spend part of their time studying at the University and the rest working for one of our partner employers, earning a full-time wage and getting invaluable experience of the workplace. They will work with and make connections with people in their chosen industry, and at the end of their course, they will have between three and six years' work experience and a degree-level qualification.

Case studies

Joshua Hughes: BEng (Hons)Broadcast and Communications Engineering - BBC Apprenticeship Scheme

"I was most surprised by the amount of support and guidance that was available to me and my group, both from my employer and the University. If we’ve needed extra resources, they’ve gone out of their way to supply them."

Elise Merchant: Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship

"The staff at the University have been excellent, particularly now we've been coming here for over a year and they know how we work - we're getting a lot of the background knowledge we need in the workplace, so we can bring that to the table and it's less of a lecture, more of a discussion, which is quite a unique aspect of doing an apprenticeship."

Thomas Cave: BEng (Hons)Broadcast and Communications Engineering - BBC Apprenticeship Scheme

"The staff at the University have been fantastic. If ever I’ve had a problem I can contact them and they will point me in the right direction every time. I was pleased to find that we get full access to all the student resources."

 

APPRENTICESHIPS IN DEVELOPMENT

We are constantly looking for new areas to expand our apprenticeship provision and are currently working on new programmes in the areas listed below. Please keep checking back, or contact us for the latest information.

  • Digital Technology Solutions Professional
  • Building Services Design Engineering
  • Nursing
  • Operating Department Practitioner
  • Radiographer
  • Sonographer

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a higher or degree apprenticeship?

Higher and degree apprenticeships allow individuals to achieve a higher education qualification while working full-time and gaining experience in the workplace. Higher apprenticeships lead to higher education qualifications including HNDs and foundation degrees, while degree apprenticeships lead to a full Bachelor’s or Master’s degree.

What are the benefits for apprentices?

They will gain a higher-level qualification at the same time as earning a full-time wage without the need to take out a student loan. Their employer will contribute to the training cost with the remainder paid by the government. They will also continue to build up their work experience, with the possibility of gaining additional professional qualifications. Statistics show that 71 per cent of apprentices stayed with their employers after completing their training, while a quarter received a promotion within 12 months (Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Apprentice Survey 2014).

What are the benefits for employers?

Offering apprenticeships can be a way for employers to attract high-quality new talent with a desire to progress to Bachelor's or Master's degree level within a workplace environment. It can also be a practical way to fill any skills gaps that may exist within the workforce, as the apprentices will be learning sector-specific skills from the start. Staff who have trained with a company may have greater loyalty, and be more likely to stay for a long period, providing opportunities for businesses to produce their own leaders from within.

How are apprenticeships funded?

Apprenticeships will be funded through the Apprenticeship Levy, paid by all UK employers with a payroll of over £3 million a year. Employers that are subject to the levy can claim back their payments to fund apprenticeships, and all employers can claim up to 90 per cent of the cost of training and assessing apprenticeships. There is no cost to the apprentice.