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Apprenticeship information for employers

Our advanced, higher and degree apprenticeships are a cost-effective way for employers and learners to gain the latest top-level industry skills and knowledge. We work with businesses to shape apprenticeships to help train the next generation of workers. Funding opportunities mean apprenticeship training from the University will come at no extra cost to the employer.

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What are advanced, higher and degree apprenticeships?

Our advanced, higher and degree apprenticeships are available at levels 3 to 7. They combine work with study and may include a university qualification such as a diploma, bachelor's, or master's degree. Some apprenticeships may also include a professional qualification relevant to the industry or specialism.

An apprentice, on average, will spend approximately 80% of their time at work, with a minimum of 20% allocated to 'off the job' learning. This allows apprentices to develop within their role whilst gaining transferable higher-level knowledge and skills which can be applied in the workplace.

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What are the benefits of an apprenticeship for employers?

Employing an apprentice has a host of benefits including:

  • Opportunity to help grow talent
  • Development of skills relevant to the organisation
  • Deepened specialist knowledge to bring back into your business
  • Improved productivity, quality, and delivery
  • Increased retention and savings on recruitment costs
  • Motivation of existing staff
  • Enhanced succession planning – future proofing skills pipeline.
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Who pays for the apprenticeship?

Larger organisations can use their apprenticeship levy and government top-up to pay tuition and professional fees of advanced, higher or degree apprenticeships. For smaller, non-levy paying employers, the government pays 95% with the remainder co-invested by the business.

For apprentices, there are no tuition fees, as the costs are covered by contributions made by the government and/or the employer. This also means the apprentice will have no student loans.

Learn more about apprenticeship funding.

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What training will I need to provide for apprentices?

Your apprentice will receive two types of training: 'on the job' training delivered by you, and 'off the job' training delivered by the University.

On the job apprenticeship training

You'll need to provide your apprentice with training and supervision to embed the skills, knowledge, and behaviours of the apprenticeship. You should also support your apprentice in other ways including:

  • an induction
  • mentoring to monitor progression, regularly review their skills, and give support
  • networking opportunities
  • performance reviews
  • mental health and wellbeing support.


Off the job apprenticeship training

This is delivered during your apprentice's normal working hours and they must spend at least 20% of this time completing it. The timings can be flexible and doesn't necessarily have to mean one day out of the workplace per week. Training can take place:

  • at the apprentice's place of work
  • on a placement within another organisation or department
  • at a training provider, college, or university
  • online
  • a combination of these options.

This training will teach your apprentice the knowledge, skills, and behaviours set out in the apprenticeship standard so they can achieve occupational competence.

Find out more about training apprentices.

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How do I register an apprentice?

To register an apprentice as an employer, you'll need to set up an account on Government Gateway and register on the apprenticeship service. On your account, you'll be able to access funding, advertise vacancies, find training providers, and give feedback on apprenticeship training.

Find out more about registering apprentices with your business.

Contact us

To find out more information about our apprenticeships, please get in touch by emailing us at apprenticeships@sunderland.ac.uk.