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Progressing to higher education level after an Advanced/Level 3 Apprenticeship

There are various progression opportunities at all levels of apprenticeship, but for those who successfully complete an Advanced/Level 3 Apprenticeship, higher education level study is an option worth exploring.

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The industry-recognised standards or qualifications you gain through an Advanced/Level 3 Apprenticeship, alongside the skills and experience you have gained as an apprentice will prepare you well to progress into higher education. 

Why consider higher education level study?

There are all sorts of career, financial and personal benefits associated with studying at higher education level. Higher-level skills will give you an edge in the job market, help you progress in your career and can boost your earning potential. 

What can I do after an Advanced/Level 3 Apprenticeship?

Higher education means any study from Level 4 (equivalent, in level, to the first year of a university course) upwards. There are various types of course including Foundation Degrees, HND/HNCs, Honours Degrees and professional qualifications. There are different ways of achieving these qualifications – see below.

Flexible modes of study

If you want to progress to higher education level, you will need to find a programme that suits your ambitions, interests and circumstances. There are various ways of achieving a higher education level qualification. 

  • Progress to a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship with the same or a different employer. 
  • Study part time. You might be able to attend classes during the evenings, weekends or one day a week, for instance. Part-time study can allow you to continue working and you could get support from your employer.
  • Distance learning can also allow you to combine work and study or other commitments. This may be an option if you can’t get time off work or you work shifts. The Open University is an example of a well-known provider of degree courses by distance learning.
  • Full-time study may be an option for you if you are prepared to give up work. 
  • You could take a work-related higher education level course.

Find out more about these options in What, where and how to study.  

If you want to progress to higher education level study…

  • Find out whether a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship is available to allow you to progress in your area of work.
  • Look at the Getting started section of Lifepilot to find out about the key things to consider.
  • Search for suitable courses on the UCAS website. You can also explore the range of higher education level courses on offer in the South of England using the Find a Provider tool.
  • The Lifepilot HE Skills Map tool will help you build a record of your current experiences and assess your skills. This will help you decide on options and think about what to include in your application.
  • For advice on making an application to higher education, refer to the section on Applying
  • You can get advice on your next steps from the National Careers Service.

Case study

Hear about Abigail's experience of moving from an apprenticeship into a Foundation Degree at the University of Plymouth. 

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