There is a common assumption that an apprenticeship is a dead-end career path, where you will be trapped in the same business and career for life.
However, there are plenty of options after you complete an apprenticeship – you won’t be closing doors by completing apprenticeship training. If you’re eager to get back into education afterwards after an apprenticeship, then you can certainly do so.
But what about exam grades?
As universities usually take A Levels to accept students onto courses, you may be wondering how you can be accepted through apprenticeship qualifications.
Different apprenticeship levels are equivalent to different exam grades, which means you will need to reach certain apprenticeship qualifications to have the right grades for university. Advanced apprenticeships (level 3 and 4) are considered equivalent to A-levels, and will receive UCAS points to apply to uni. You can find out more about the different apprenticeship levels here.
You should also keep in mind that universities will take your entire application into account – including your personal statement. The personal statement is a 4000-character document, much like a cover letter, where you will write about your ambitions, why you would fit the course, and your experiences so far.
What about fees?
Of course, one of the drawbacks of university is the tuition fees and debt that will add up by the time you finish your degree. These days, you can progress all the way to degree-level qualifications through the apprenticeship route, earning and learning at the same time.
However, for those who are certain that the university is the route for them, a loan will be available if you have competed a level 3 or ‘advanced’ level apprenticeship, as the degree will be considered your first higher education qualification. Anything higher than an advanced level apprenticeship counts as a certificate of higher education, and is therefore not eligible.
The world of student finance is a complex one, so if you have any questions, reach out to UCAS customer service.
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So I can go to university afterwards?
Absolutely, but it will all depend on the universities to accept your application. You will find that universities value all different paths and experiences people have, and in fact, an apprenticeship would stand you in very good stead for impressing universities.
The practical knowledge along with the qualifications you gain through your apprenticeship are often looked on favourably by admissions tutors, as it shows a real long-term commitment to a subject, and the value you place on expanding your skills and experience.
However, bear in mind that you cannot go from university into an apprenticeship – so be wise with your career choices.