Academic Professional Apprenticeship/PGCert (HE)

Academic Professional Apprenticeship: Specialist Role in Teaching with PGCert (HE) and FHEA Status

The APA is designed for academic professionals new to HE who are engaged in teaching and the support of learning. As such it is suitable for all new academic staff who have less than three years’ experience in HE and other staff appointed who have significant contact with students in a learning, teaching and assessment capacity.

The apprenticeship is designed to take staff from their entry point of employment in higher education to full professional competence. The Academic Professional Apprenticeship Standard reflects widely understood professional standards in higher education and is aligned to the Higher Education Academy’s UK Professional Standards Framework. The apprenticeship standard can be found here.

At entry point, you are likely to have considerable expertise in a particular subject discipline, usually as indicated by the completion of postgraduate level 7 or level 8 qualifications and/or substantial experience in professional/industry employment. Through additional training, as indicated in the standard, you will be enabled to achieve competency as an Academic Professional.

Successful completion of the apprenticeship will also confer the university award of PGCert (HE) and Fellowship of the HEA.

Key Benefits to you

The apprenticeship will enable a context specific induction for you; working in your specific Faculty/School with the support of a designated mentor. The allocation of protected time for you will help to facilitate high levels of meaningful engagement in early CPD activity. The apprenticeship offers opportunities for a wide array of inputs through on the job and off the job training. You will engage with a wide range of speakers, an enriched raft of workshops and developmental opportunities, and opportunities to learn from expertise within BCU’s rich community of practice.

The apprenticeship standard explains that apprentices will be co-developed through their job role and an associated skills development programme. Apprentice skills are honed through 80% on the job training and 20% off the job training through the APA. 

Key Benefits to the Institution

The apprenticeship provides the institution with the ability to draw down apprenticeship levy funding for this staff development activity. It will provide an enriched professional development programme for staff new to learning and teaching in an HE setting, therefore ensuring more motivated and enthused early career academics and increased staff retention. The implementation of this programme demonstrates commitment to academic staff and their CPD, raising levels of staff satisfaction. Importantly, it will enhance apprentices’ professional development as educators and better equip them, and their schools, to provide BCU students with truly innovative and student-centred learning experiences as the institution moves forward towards achieving TEF Gold.

For further information about joining the course please contact us by emailing