What are Apprenticeships?

Apprenticeships are a highly effective form of vocational learning, designed to provide your employees with the skills required for their role. Much of the learning takes place on the job and is actually delivered by your more experienced staff, ensuring your learners will gain and apply the real-life, practical skills, knowledge and understanding that your business needs.
For the learner, the opportunity to gain a nationally recognised qualification (NVQs, BTEC National Diplomas and Key Skills), whilst earning money at the same time is what makes Apprenticeships a practical learning option.



How do Apprenticeships work?

Apprenticeships will typically comprise these components:
  • NVQs
  • Functional Skills 
  • Technical Certificate
Learners, aged between 16 and 24, will learn via a mixture of on and off-the-job training.
The Colleges' Partnership will work with you to develop an appropriate training solution - in accordance with any training standards determined by your sector skills council. From there we take care of all the admin, assist you in securing funding, manage the skills assessment, technical certification and Functional Skills delivery.
On-the-job training
Your learners will spend the majority of their time working with and learning from their colleagues in the workplace rather than external trainers - enabling you to maintain control of delivery standards. We will provide ongoing assessment of the learners by gathering evidence of what they have learned through demonstration or discussion.
Off-the-job training
Your learners will also spend some time with our training staff developing their Functional Skills, including working with others, improving own learning and performance, communication, application of number and information communication technology.
During the Apprenticeship programme you will pay the Apprentice a wage.



Why Apprenticeships?

Apprenticeships demonstrate real commitment to recruitment, development and training of the best young people. They not only show potential employees that you take their development seriously, but they also demonstrate to your customers that you are committed to quality of product and service via better trained people.
Apprenticeships enable you to directly address any skills gaps, helping make your organisation more effective, competent, productive and competitive.
Apprenticeships offer you cost effective, relevant training for your staff.



Is my organisation eligible?

All organisations can offer Apprenticeships; you have the option of recruiting Apprentices or offering your existing staff the opportunity to take up an Apprenticeship.
Your prospective Apprentices must live in England, be aged between 16 and 24 and not taking part in full-time education. Please note that graduates are not eligible.



What costs are involved?

The costs will largely depend on the age of the Apprentice. Apprenticeships are a government funded initiative, with funding provided by the Skills Funding Agency. Up to 100% funding towards training costs is available for applicants aged between 16 and 18, with partial funding being available for those aged 19+.
You will need to pay the Apprentice a wage during their programme. Let The Colleges' Partnership help you secure the funding you need, please contact us on 01258 457085 or enquiries@thecollegespartnership.co.uk




What are NVQs?

An NVQ can be a stand alone qualification or be part of an Apprenticeship. As part of an Apprenticeship, an NVQ is the most practical component of the Apprenticeship Framework, and is a nationally recognised qualification which assesses a learner's knowledge of their employment area and experience in their role.
Through completing a series of mandatory and optional units, learners demonstrate their competencies in a number of different aspects of their job role, gaining confidence as they apply their growing expertise in real work situations.
NVQs are assessed in the workplace by our qualified assessors, who make regular visits to monitor progress during the course of the programme - a high level of support and guidance which has been proven to increase employee motivation.



What are Functional Skills?

Functional Skills qualifications are broader in scope than QCF Diplomas, NVQs and Technical Certificates, and focus on not only the transferable skills which learners use all the time, whatever their job role, but also problem solving skills.
Their aim is to build on aptitudes learnt in full-time education, which are essential in any work environment.
There are three Functional Skills:
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Information Communication Technology
English and Mathematics are common to all apprenticeships and ICT may also be required.  Functional Skills may be taken at different levels depending on the employment area and the level of the apprenticeship.
A learner who has successfully completed Functional Skills will be more capable in these areas, for example, using spreadsheets, doing calculations and writing reports.



Copyright © Wiltshire & Somerset Colleges' Partnership Ltd, 2008. All Rights Reserved