Apprenticeships, traineeships and cadet schemes

Apprenticeships offer structured training with an employer and lead to nationally-recognised qualifications.

They provide a route into hundreds of different careers, including many in organisations that provide NHS healthcare. 

Key facts and figures

Four levels

Apprenticeships are available at four levels:

Entry requirements

Employers will want to make sure that you can cope with the level of the work involved. So the entry requirements will depend on the employer and the type and level of apprenticeship.

For instance, for direct entry to an Advanced Level Apprenticeship, you may need four or five GCSEs at grades 9-4/A-C or equivalent, sometimes including particular subjects. You may be expected to take an entry test. To start a higher apprenticeship you are likely to need a qualification at level 3 or sufficient experience.

Types of apprenticeships

There are hundreds of different jobs covered by apprenticeships. Examples of apprenticeships in health, public services and care include:

Other apprenticeships offered by organisations that provide NHS healthcare are suitable for work with other types of employers too, such as those in construction, facilities, business administration, logistics and management. There are many more.

See our handy PDF for examples of the types of apprenticeship in health available. And look out for the 'A' icon when exploring the various roles on this website to see which ones roles can be entered through an apprenticeship. 

Find out more and apply

There’s often tough competition for apprenticeship places. In your application and interview you need to show that you are committed, aware of your responsibilities and able to cope with the work and study. Our career planning section has lots of information on applications, interviews etc.

There has never been a better time to start an apprenticeship and applying is easy. Visit the website for more general information and to register, search and apply for opportunities. Apprenticeship vacancies may also be found on the NHS Jobs website. You can take a look at the 'Choose an Apprenticeship' Video produced by the National Skills Academy for Health. And check out the different healthcare apprenticeship career routes on the Skills for Health website

Next steps after an apprenticeship

After completing an apprenticeship, you may be offered a permanent job. Most successful apprentices stay in employment, often with the same employer. Check whether you are likely to be offered work at the end of your programme.

Ask whether there are opportunities for promotion when you have completed your apprenticeship and whether you will be able to continue with your studies. You can often progress from one level of apprenticeship to another. Some apprenticeships provide you with the qualifications you need to go to university.

You can also get free and impartial careers advice from the National Careers Service. Search online for 'National Careers Service' or call an adviser on 0800 100 900.

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