This is a new service - your feedback will help us to improve it.


What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a real job where you learn, gain experience and get paid. You’re an employee with a contract of employment and holiday leave. By the end of an apprenticeship, you'll have the right skills and knowledge needed for your chosen career.

It can take between 1 and 6 years to complete an apprenticeship depending on which one you choose, what level it is and your previous experience. It’s funded from contributions made by the government and your employer.

Who can do an apprenticeship

Apprenticeships are aimed at anyone who is over the age of 16 and not in full-time education.

Each apprenticeship has a level and an equivalent education level. You can start an apprenticeship at any level. 

Depending on the level, some apprenticeships may:

  • require previous qualifications such as an English or maths GCSE
  • give extra training in the English or maths skills needed so you’re at the right level

At the end of your apprenticeship, you’ll achieve the equivalent education level. For example, if you complete a level 3 apprenticeship, you’ll achieve the equivalent of an A level.

Apprenticeship Level Equivalent education level
Intermediate 2 GCSE
Advanced 3 A-Level
Higher  4,5,6 and 7 Foundation degree or above 
Degree 6 and 7 Bachelor’s or master’s degree

Your rights and responsibilities as an apprentice

Apprentices have the same rights as other employees. You are entitled to a contract of employment, and a minimum of 20 days paid leave each year, plus bank holidays. You will work at least 30 hours per week with your employer, and undertake part-time study through a mixture of day/block release, distance, and e-learning.

Your employer and university, college, or training provider will set out details of what they will provide and what they expect from you as an apprentice, both as an employee and as a student, in two key documents.

Apprenticeship agreement

This is signed by the employer and apprentice, it is equivalent to a contract of employment, giving details of what the employer and apprentice agree, including:

  • how long you'll be employed
  • the training you'll receive
  • your working conditions (such as pay, working hours, holidays, and any support or benefits provided)
  • the apprenticeship framework or standard you will be working to, and the skill, trade or occupation for which you are being trained

Commitment statement

This is signed by the employer, you as the apprentice, and training provider, includes:

  • the planned content and schedule for your training
  • the qualifications you are working toward
  • what is expected and offered by the employer, the training organisation, and you, as the apprentice
  • how to resolve queries or complaints

If you're unsure what your terms and conditions mean, it's a good idea to talk them through with a parent/carer, teacher, or careers adviser.

Where to find apprenticeships

Local training providers

National employers and apprenticeship schemes



Public sector:


Walsall Council's Endless Possibilities programme

Through our Endless Possibilities programme, we can support you and invest in your future career. Our apprenticeships give you the opportunity to join the largest employer in the borough.

Further resources

Rate this page