FAQs for Apprentices

As an apprentice, you are paid to learn while you receive accredited qualifications. With on-the-job training there is no need to sit in a classroom all week.

As an apprentice, you receive the same benefits as full-time employees, including paid holidays and sick leave. Apprenticeship training is paid for by government and employers, so you can avoid the debt sometimes associated with attending university.

As well as setting out the apprentice agreement, your employer must pay you the appropriate national minimum wage, agree minimum hours of employment, provide workplace benefits in line with other employees, including an induction into the role. The employer must arrange the agreed on-the-job training and mentoring and contribute to the Apprenticeship Levy if applicable.

Apprenticeship training is for anyone in England aged 16 years old and above, whether employed, unemployed or leaving school, who have not already completed a qualification in a similar role.

Your trainer will assess your achievements through work-based observation, a portfolio and other evidence of learning.

There are no formal qualifications needed to do an apprenticeship. However, some employers may ask for GCSEs (A-C) in English, Maths and Science. And, to receive government funding, you must meet the eligibility criteria set by the Education and Skills Funding Agency



You can search courses and vacancies on the CCCT home page <LINK> or view Careers at CCCT <LINK to Careers page> to check for live vacancies. You can also call in to one of our centres to find our more about our current vacancies or contact the CCCT recruitment team for more information.

Yes, you can do an apprenticeship if you are a university graduate. However, because a degree is a higher qualification than an apprenticeship, you will not meet the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s eligibility criteria for funding. Your employer will have to pay your training costs.

To apply for an apprenticeship, you go through an application process as for any other job. Check available vacancies by searching Find an apprenticeship <LINK to: Find an apprenticeship>

If you studied outside the UK, CCCT will need to check if you are eligible to undertake an apprenticeship. Talk to our apprenticeship team. Call 0207 391 6400 or email: apprentice@capitalcct.ac.uk

All apprentices receive the minimum wage of £3.50 per hour, but some employers choose to pay more. As your skills develop, your pay should increase accordingly. You can also receive an additional allowance for essential books, uniforms and equipment, or to help you with a disability. As a studying apprentice, you can also receive a range of travel and council tax discounts.

There are many different apprenticeships for a wide range of industries.

Apprenticeships are designed for full-time work for between 30 and 40 hours a week, Monday to Friday. The options of weekend and overtime work will depend on your employer. You may need to work shifts, evenings, weekends and public holidays. Your working hours should be confirmed in your Apprenticeship Agreement which is signed by you and your employer before you start your role.

There are lots of apprenticeships available across many different sectors. To ensure that industry standards are met and maintained, each occupation is defined by an Apprenticeship Standard. Apprenticeship Standards are designed by employers to ensure that the training programme and assessment plan meet the needs of the specific role as well as the broader sector and wider economy. The Standard outlines the core skills, knowledge and behaviours required for a specific role in a particular industry sector. It details the relevant mix of training and assessment needed to meet a recognised qualification, including the entry requirements, level and length of study, planned progression, assessment and certificates awarded. When you study for an apprenticeship, CCCT works with your employer to make sure that your role fits the appropriate Apprenticeship Standard. When you start your apprenticeship, your employer will provide an apprenticeship agreement, which is a workplace contract that is very specific to your job role, confirming the Apprenticeship Standard to which you will be working.

You should not have to pay anything to train as an apprentice. Your employer pays your salary and covers the cost of your training. If you are aged between 16 and 18 years old, training will be 100% fully funded by the government. If you are aged between 19 and 24 years old, half your training will be funded by the government and the other half by your employer. If you are 25 years old or older, you may have to contribute to your training cost. Financial assistance may be available through the Advanced Learner Loan scheme.


The apprenticeship qualifications can include:

  • Functional skills: enhancing skills in English, Maths and IT if needed
  • Qualification and Credit Framework (QCFs): credits that accumulate to form qualifications
  • National vocational qualification (NVQ): focuses on skills, knowledge and competences needed in the day-to-day job
  • Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC): assesses knowledge and understanding of the job and industry
  • Employee rights and responsibilities
  • Personal learning and thinking skills.

At the end of your apprenticeship you’ll receive a certificate for each qualification, as well as an overall apprenticeship standard certificate.

Apprentices receive the same entitlements as other employees, including annual leave, sick leave, public holidays and work breaks. Statutory annual leave is 28 days per year; some employers might subtract the eight public holidays from this annual allowance. Sick leave is the same as for other full-time employees.

A technical certificate is equivalent to five good GCSE passes (level two) or two A level passes (advanced level). Examples: City and Guilds, Council for Awards in Children's Care and Education (CACHE), Education Development International (EDI) and Vocational Training Charitable Trust (VTCT).

As an apprentice, you will not pay tax and national insurance on your income. If your income is under £9,000 a year, you should not be charged.

National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) are competency-based qualifications. Many employers allow their staff to study for NVQs in work time. They're available in levels 1 to 5 so you can start at a level suitable for you and work your way up. NVQs are recognised throughout the UK and are achieved through on-the-job training, recording what you do at work, often a work-related project.

Apprenticeship certificates are usually ready 8 weeks after you have completed your apprenticeship. Certificates can be collected from CCCT venues or posted to your home address.

The Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) is a framework for creating and accrediting qualifications. Qualifications that use the QCF rules are made up of units that accumulate to build a qualification. Units can be awarded by different organisations. Each unit has a credit value with credits awarded when a unit is completed. One credit will usually take ten hours of learning. There are three different types of QCF qualifications: Award, Certificate and Diploma. You can achieve an Award with one to 12 credits; a Certificate with 13 to 36 credits; and a Diploma with at least 37 credits. Units and qualifications are each given a level according to their difficulty, from entry level to level 8.

Once you successfully complete your apprenticeship, you will have a recognised qualification and work experience to progress in your chosen career. Your employer will decide whether to continue employing you in your current job role and there may also be opportunities to apply for other roles in your organisation.

Apprenticeships are government funded. There is no cost to you if you are aged between 16 and 23 years old when you do the apprenticeship.

CCCT is committed to equality and diversity. We ensure that additional support is available to apprentices with learning difficulties or physical disabilities and we can provide additional resources as needed. If you need learning support, talk to CCCT’s apprenticeship team about your personal requirements.

Apprenticeships take a minimum of twelve months and up to five years to complete, depending on the level of apprenticeship and the industry sector. For example, an Intermediate level 2 apprenticeship usually takes around twelve to eighteen months and an advanced level 3 apprenticeship around twenty-four months.

As well as your salary, you can also receive an additional allowance for essential books, uniforms and equipment, or to help you with a disability. There are also special travel, retail and entertainment discounts available for apprentices, including discounted Oyster cards from Transport for London and council tax reductions. The NUS Apprentice Extra card allows you access to a range of in-store and online retail discounts - please ask your local suppliers for details on their student discount schemes. You should also contact your local council to find out if you qualify for a council tax discount.

To complete an apprenticeship you must be employed a minimum of 30 hours per week. The apprenticeship involves on the job training with either a day or block release training programme at a registered training provider.

Your apprenticeship training is mainly in the workplace with support through a day or block release programme with a registered training provider. Training is delivered through a combination of on-the-job mentoring with more experienced employees in your workplace. There are also one-to-one teaching and training sessions at your workplace with your tutor each month. And there could be some online learning. Your tutor will help you collect evidence to demonstrate your workplace knowledge and competencies to produce a personal portfolio of work and other materials needed for assessment.

An apprenticeship is work-based training. As an apprentice, you are fully employed and paid while you work towards a nationally recognised qualification. Apprenticeship training provides practical skills and experience that can help you kickstart your career with valuable work experience. If you are already employed, an apprenticeship can provide professional development that can help you progress your skills and improve your employment prospects or career direction.

An apprentice agreement is part of the employment contract that you will sign with your employer at the start of the job. It details the relevant skills, trade or occupation related to your apprenticeship and confirms the designated apprenticeship standard.