Apprenticeship Levels Explained
7 months ago

There are thousands of apprenticeships you can apply for, but do you know there are four different apprenticeship qualification categories? They span from level two to level seven (seven being the highest) and they’re categorised as Intermediate, Advanced, Higher and Degree apprenticeships. Here’s a breakdown of all the different levels and the requirements needed for each one. 

Intermediate Apprenticeships: Level 2

Intermediate apprenticeships are typically considered to be the same level as five GCSE passes. Intermediate apprenticeships are a fantastic way to get started with your career in an entry level role within an organisation. They usually take between 12 to 18 months to complete, with an average of around 6 hours per week off-the-job training. 

Entry requirements are different depending on the employer and the role, but generally, Level 2 apprenticeships don't require any formal qualifications. If you don't already have GCSEs in English and maths, you will need to take functional skills as part of the apprenticeship, which is an alternative to GCSEs.

Browse the intermediate apprenticeships available on our website.

Advanced Apprenticeships: Level 3

Advanced Apprenticeships are equivalent to two A level passes or a T level pass. If you already have Level 3 qualifications, including A levels, the Advanced Apprenticeship is a great way to gain practical, work-based skills and experience in a particular job and sector. It can take anywhere up to 24 months to complete – although the exact length will vary, depending on the employer, and the industry you’re looking to work in. 

The entry requirements for level 3 apprenticeships are usually five GCSE passes (9 to 4/A* to C) including maths and english. 

Browse the advanced apprenticeships available on our website.

Higher Apprenticeships: Level 4 & 5

Level 4 apprenticeships are equivalent to a Higher National Certificate (HNC) or the first year of an undergraduate degree you'd typically undertake at a university. Level 5 apprenticeships, on the other hand, are equivalent to a Higher National Diploma (HND) or a foundation degree. Higher apprenticeships are a great way to gain industry experience, and earn a salary  alongside achieving a qualification. 

A Higher Apprenticeship can take up to five years to complete, and there's a high chance the employer will keep you on permanently.  If the company doesn’t employ you after the apprenticeship, or you choose to look elsewhere, you will still be a highly employable candidate!

Entry requirements for a higher apprenticeship may include at least five GCSEs passes (9 to 4/A* to C) including maths and english. Employers may also ask for Level 3 qualifications, including A levels, NVQs, or a BTEC. Some companies will expect you to have studied subjects relevant to the apprenticeship as well, for example science or IT but this is dependent on the industry. 

Browse the higher apprenticeships available on our website.

Degree Apprenticeships: Level 6 & 7

A degree apprenticeship enables you to gain a full undergraduate (level 6) or master’s (level 7) degree, while you work as a full-time employee. Degree apprenticeships can take three to six years to complete, depending on the course and qualification. 

The requirements for degree apprenticeship can vary, but the standard requirement is that you must be at least 18 years old. Degree apprenticeships will ask for at least five GCSEs at 9-4 (or A*- C), including Maths and English. But you could also progress into a degree apprenticeship from a lower-level apprenticeship (Level 3, advanced), or another qualification like a T Level. 

Browse the degree apprenticeships available on our website.

Choosing an apprenticeship can set you on a great career path, and we have a range of exciting apprenticeships across all levels that you can apply for right now! Discover what’s on offer and we wish you the best of luck! 

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