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Posted By Careermap on 08/02/2019 in Apprenticeship Sector News Stories

The History of Apprenticeships

The History of Apprenticeships

Since the introduction of apprenticeships, which dates back to the middle ages, they have evolved dramatically - more so in recent years! The government have been working towards eradicating the negative perception that apprentices are underpaid, overworked and just for trades or for those who didn’t do well in school. 


Apprenticeships are now an extremely appealing option to school and college leavers. In fact, there is no age limit to an apprenticeship now and with the option to gain a debt-free degree, apprenticeships are becoming a popular choice amongst people of all ages!


What is the history behind apprenticeships?


Wondering how apprenticeships have changed over the many years? Let’s take a look:


Apprenticeships can be traced back to 1563 when the first national apprenticeship of training was introduced. In the 1900s, over 340,000 young people were undertaking apprenticeships. This continued to grow due to the World Wars, where there was a shortage of male workers as they were out fighting for the country. A third of the boys at school chose to leave and take up an apprenticeship. 


In 1993, apprenticeships began evolving. Modern apprenticeships were planned and introduced over the following couple of years. Qualifications were set for apprenticeships and by the 2000s entry requirements were set out following the announcement of national frameworks. 


During 2004 to 2010 the upper age limit of 25 was removed and young apprenticeships were also introduced for those still in school but want a more hands-on approach to learning. An election took place in 2010 and subsequently higher apprenticeships were developed and the young apprenticeship programme came to an end. 


Apprenticeships now expand across a broad range of industries, from engineering to creative and digital, IT, accounting, nursing, managerial role plus many more! Gone are the days when you had to go to university to get a degree and a well-paid job! The overall quality of apprenticeships has risen, however in 2018 there was a 31% decline in apprenticeships started when compared to 2015 - 2016. 


Apprenticeships in the here and now 


Apprenticeships offer a stepping stone into the world of work. You’ll be employed to a minimum of 30 hours per week while receiving high-quality training on and off the job. As an apprentice, you’ll get paid. You will also gain industry related qualification, in-demand skills and invaluable work experience. There are 3 levels of apprenticeships, these include:


  • Intermediate (equal to 5 GCSEs) 

  • Advanced (equal to 2 A-Levels)

  • Higher/Degree (equal to foundation degree and higher)


Check out the CareerMap website where you can apply for an apprenticeship or advertise vacancies. 



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