What are the 4 Types of Apprenticeships?

Posted on Wednesday, January 31, 2024 by The Office ApprenticeNo comments

Exploring the 4 Types of Apprenticeships in the UK

Apprenticeships in the UK serve as invaluable pathways for individuals to acquire practical skills and expertise in various industries while earning recognised qualifications. Structured into different types, each catering to specific skill sets and career aspirations, apprenticeships offer a unique blend of on-the-job training and academic learning. Let's delve into the four types of apprenticeships available in the UK, shedding light on their significance and potential career trajectories.


1. Intermediate Apprenticeships

Intermediate apprenticeships, also known as Level 2 apprenticeships, serve as an entry point into the world of work for individuals who have completed their basic education and are ready to pursue a career in their chosen field. These apprenticeships provide a solid foundation in fundamental skills and knowledge, blending practical training with theoretical study to equip apprentices with the tools they need to succeed in their roles.


Apprentices at this level typically work towards achieving a Level 2 qualification, such as an NVQ Level 2 or a BTEC Diploma. The duration of an intermediate apprenticeship can vary depending on the industry and the specific requirements of the programme. Upon completion, apprentices are well-positioned to progress to more advanced levels of apprenticeship or secure employment in their chosen field.


What are the 4 Types of Apprenticeships?


2. Advanced Apprenticeships

Advanced apprenticeships, also known as Level 3 apprenticeships, are designed for individuals who are ready to take their skills to the next level and pursue more challenging roles within their chosen industry. These apprenticeships offer a combination of advanced training and academic study, enabling apprentices to deepen their understanding and expertise in their field.


Apprenticeships at this level typically last between 18 to 24 months and lead to qualifications such as NVQ Level 3, A-level equivalent qualifications, or technical certificates. Advanced apprenticeships provide a pathway to higher education or enable apprentices to secure employment in roles that require specialised skills and knowledge. They offer a route to career advancement and increased earning potential for individuals seeking to excel in their chosen profession.


3. Higher Apprenticeships

Higher apprenticeships represent a significant step forward in apprenticeship training, offering individuals the opportunity to earn while they learn and gain a university-level qualification. These apprenticeships, available at Levels 4 and above, combine on-the-job training with academic study at a higher education institution, such as a university or college.


Covering a wide range of industries, including engineering, healthcare, business management, and digital technology, higher apprenticeships typically last between three to six years, depending on the level of the apprenticeship and the requirements of the programme. Apprentices at this level work towards achieving qualifications such as foundation degrees, bachelor's degrees, or even master's degrees, depending on the programme's structure and requirements.


4. Degree Apprenticeships

Degree apprenticeships represent the pinnacle of apprenticeship training, offering individuals the opportunity to earn a full bachelor's or master's degree while gaining practical work experience. These apprenticeships combine on-the-job training with academic study at a university, providing apprentices with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in their chosen field.


Degree apprenticeships are available at Levels 6 and 7 and typically last between three to six years, depending on the programme's structure and requirements. Apprentices work towards achieving a full university degree alongside gaining valuable work experience, positioning them for success in their chosen careers.



Apprenticeships offer a diverse range of opportunities for individuals to develop their skills, gain practical experience, and achieve qualifications relevant to their chosen career paths. The four types of apprenticeships – intermediate, advanced, higher, and degree – cater to individuals at different stages of their learning journey, providing a structured pathway to career success. By understanding the types of apprenticeships available, individuals can make informed decisions about their future and take proactive steps towards achieving their career goals.

About the Author: Nurturing Apprenticeship Enthusiasm

The Office Apprentice

Darryn (The Office Apprentice) Lewis 

Talent Acquisition Specialist with a rich tapestry of 15 years in the world of human resources and recruitment. My passion lies in connecting exceptional talent with forward-thinking organisations, fostering growth on both ends of the spectrum.

I bring not just expertise but a genuine love for the subject. Through my words, apprenticeships cease to be a mere career path; they become a transformative journey toward personal and professional growth. Welcome to a space where enthusiasm for apprenticeships is not just evident but contagious. Let's embark on this exciting adventure together!

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