Should I join a University or do an Apprenticeship?

Should I join a University or do an Apprenticeship?

A university versus apprenticeship debate has been running for a long time. What to do after leaving college or school becomes a tough decision. Do I join a university and get a degree? Or achieve an apprenticeship that offers to earn while learning?

Your next move is the proper consideration that will help you step in the right direction. University education is a popular choice. The apprenticeship trend is going higher on the other side, becoming university alternatives faster. This article will help you choose the best route for your dream career.

Significant benefits

If you are unsure, remember that you're deciding between the two experiences, not whether to gain a degree or not. You can still acquire a university qualification with a degree apprenticeship. The significant benefits include:

  • Apprenticeship: It immediately enters you into the world of work. It does not require tuition fees payment and helps make industry contacts from the first day. Hence, you gain valuable on-the-job skills and experience while earning a salary.
  • University: You pick from thousands of courses choice. A degree leaves your career open-ended for future opportunities. You gain soft skills whole range transferable to any role. Also, you have independence while living away from home. 

We further analyse each option's advantages in more detail so you can make this sensible decision a little easier. 

Subjects coverage

At university, you choose from degree programmes' comprehensive range. It becomes beneficial when unsure about doing next after graduation, and a broader subject range keeps your options open.

The apprenticeships' broader scope can surprise you! Now manual trades like construction or engineering are not dominating apprenticeships. Apprenticeship has become popular across every UK industry in the public and private sectors, including:

What about the job outcomes?

A university study targets your career in a broader range. Also, you can target various careers through apprenticeships. However, both stand you in a good position from a job perspective.

Apprenticeships' have restrictions; they are specific to a particular role's knowledge, training and skills. Also, you will likely tie in with an employer for an apprenticeship.

Hence, if you have confidence in your career selection, you can take any opportunities advantage to progress. However, certain professions still require a degree, like science, business and healthcare.

Last year, 80% of UK graduates were in employment, with a low percentage also enrolled in further education. Some degree fields have the highest employment rate. These include sciences, education, IT, mining, health and social work, real estate, and manufacturing.

Also, studies show that 85% of apprentices remain employed after their apprenticeship completion, and 64% of apprentices continue work with their existing employers.

National Apprenticeship Service says 92% of businesses that adopt apprenticeships believe that their workforce becomes more motivated and satisfied. Also, 80% of these businesses have observed an increased employee retention rate. It indicates high job satisfaction and happy employees.

What will you learn?

Apprenticeship content depends on the subject you want to study or gain train. Each degree programme and apprenticeship are different and need some research to know more precisely what each involves.

When comparing the content of the university and apprenticeship courses, you must ensure the content, and resulting qualifications target your career goals.

University study primarily focuses on education and research and adopts a theoretical learning approach. You learn from lectures and workshops and graduate with a bachelor's degree. After your bachelor's degree, you go into the world of work to test your knowledge by putting what you've learned from graduation into practice.

Apprenticeships become suitable who are looking for a university alternative. It has more focus on a practical approach to learning. You'll gain practical hands-on valuable experience. Also, you will acquire special career training and learn trade skills while doing the job.

Further, apprenticeships allow you to apply your knowledge, skills, and behaviours straightaway. You will be holding an NVQ, HNC or HND at completion. A higher apprenticeship leads to a foundation degree, while degree apprenticeships can result in a full degree.

What will you earn while studying?

Opting for university needs to wait until your graduation to start earning a full-time wage. Or you can work part-time without disturbing your study schedule.

Apprentices benefit from learning and earning simultaneously, making it learn while you earn. It is like a real job with a skills development programme. You gain valuable on-the-job training, qualification, and work experience. Also, you can benefit from free career advice, and functional skills training, helping you get ahead in your career.

The Sutton Trust previously examined University graduates' and apprentices' earning potential. They found that apprentices can expect to reach thousands more in their lifetime than undergraduates from non-Russell Group universities.

What about the learning cost?

Apprenticeships win the race when compared with university costs. You will not pay a penny if you are 25; the UK government and your employer will fund your apprenticeship training.

University studying will cost you £9,250 per year in tuition fees and additional living expenses. It means you will have student debt when leaving a university. You will repay the debt until you annually earn a minimum of £27,288.

What do employers think?

Employers place a high value on both university education and apprenticeships on the following basis:

  • University is known for knowledge and transferable skills' in-depth provision. Educated graduates are in high demand and will remain so for the foreseeable future.
  • Apprenticeships carry worth because of their practical nature and real-life work experience opportunities. Many organisations offer apprenticeships, and employers consider them a viable university degree alternative.

What should you join?

The CIPD are experts in the world of work and career partners to almost 160,000 members across the globe. It says around 52% of graduates selected doing an apprenticeship instead of a university degree.

Get benefit from this article, and take the time to decide what you should join between university and apprenticeship. Also, you can ask KBM for further advice, and our expert support team will assist you promptly.

Enquire now to find out more!

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