Grow your own talent with Higher and Degree Apprenticeships in conjunction with the University of Derby.

Nurturing talent is important, that’s why we’ve utilised our knowledge of business and workforce development to design apprenticeship programmes that combine practical on-the-job training with academic learning.

Helping you to get the most out of a work-based apprenticeship

Our expert approach has been developed meticulously into a range of degree apprenticeships that have been recognised for their excellence.

Spending Your Apprenticeship Levy

If your business has an annual payroll of over £3 million you’re probably aware the national Apprenticeship Levy is here – and you’re already paying into the pot.

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View Why you should consider studying an Apprenticeship! video transcript

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Transfer Levy

If you pay the levy and have unused apprenticeship funds you can transfer this within your business. Transferred funds can be used by the receiving employer to upskill other staff.

Find out more about the Transfer Levy Find out more about the Transfer Levy

Government funding for SMEs

The University of Derby is one of a select group of universities nationwide chosen to receive government funding, to deliver Higher and Degree Apprenticeships for apprentices employed by non-levy paying employers (less than a £3million wage bill).

Support with apprenticeship costs

A non-levy payer only has to pay 10% towards the cost of apprenticeship training and the government will pay the rest (90%), up to the funding band maximum. This funding scheme is call ‘co-investment’. If you take on a 16-18 year old and you have under 50 employees, it could be fully funded.

There are many flexible ways to deliver apprenticeships, which can be managed around the daily demands of your business.

Our courses

Our courses in development

We are continually updating our Apprenticeships portfolio to meet the needs of a competitive and changing market. Take a look at our courses in development.

Science and Engineering

  • Materials Science Technologist
  • Environmental Practitioner

*subject to approval



We offer a ‘grow your own’ approach to developing staff in your organisation. Whether you’re looking to attract motivated new talent to develop new skills, creativity and enterprise into your organisation, or simply offer existing staff new opportunities to develop and progress their career, a higher or degree apprenticeship delivered by the University of Derby can support the specific needs of your business. We will work closely with you to develop a programme that meets your business needs.

What’s more, a higher or degree apprenticeship is:

  • A cost-effective way to train, develop and upskill a workforce
  • A way to motivate staff and improve job satisfaction
  • A way to improve staff retention rates

Our work-based programmes require a combination of on-the-job learning as well as on-campus study at the University of Derby. Apprentices are required to attend on day or block release from their employment. Patterns of attendance will vary depending on the course. There is a 20% mandatory ‘off-the-job’ learning requirement for apprenticeships. Our programmes are specially-designed to help apprentices link academic theory to their employment setting, enabling them to apply their developing skills and knowledge within their job role. Apprentices are encouraged to use real work problems and issues to inform and enhance their knowledge, and provide evidence of this learning for assessment purposes.

The University of Derby supports its apprentices with online resources, including readings, podcasts and recordings of lectures and tutorials. Apprentices will also have a personal tutor to review progress and identify further learning opportunities – pushing those who are doing well, and helping those who require additional support. Apprentices will be given work-related activities to undertake, which can be designed in consultation with employers to ensure your organisation receives a real benefit. This type of activity can be scheduled to suit the apprentice, enabling them to learn to manage their time and workload effectively.

‘Off-the-job’ training is defined as the time spent by the apprentice away from the employment setting (or within the employment setting but outside of their usual duties) that directly relates to the apprenticeship framework or standard. Each apprenticeship programme requires a minimum time spent undertaking this type of training, and it can be spread over the duration of the programme.

What counts as ‘off-the-job’-training?

  • Theory teaching, including lectures, role playing, simulation exercises, online learning and manufacturer training
  • Practical training, including shadowing, mentoring and industry visits
  • Learning support (including using online material) and time spent working on assignments

It does not include:

  • Training undertaken in English or maths
  • Progress reviews
  • Apprenticeship framework or standard assessments
  • Any training which takes place outside of the apprentice’s paid working hours

Time spent in ‘off-the-job’ training must be recorded by the apprentice.

The time it takes for an apprentice to complete a higher or degree apprenticeship at the University of Derby varies, and can be affected by a number of factors. Our courses are offered over a minimum number of years, and vary by apprenticeship standard, the type of programme, employer requirements/expectations and the development of the apprentice. Each apprenticeship is tailor-made to employer experience and to meet your entry criteria.

Yes. We can help you to identify staff currently in your organisation who could make good apprenticeship candidates, as well as assisting you to recruit suitable apprentices from outside your organisation. We have plenty of ideas to help you attract the right candidates. These may include: school and college visits, university open days, events, recruitment open days and work experience. Contact us for more information.

Employers must provide apprentices with employment in a real position within its organisation, giving them a minimum of 30 hours per week and paying them a wage or salary that meets minimum requirements. Employers must provide on the job training, and release their employee for University-based training in order to meet course requirements.

We’ll help you with any paperwork to ensure a smooth process throughout the duration of an apprenticeship. Paperwork you can expect to complete includes:

  • An employer contract
  • Finance schedule
  • ESFA funding eligibility declarations
  • Commitment statements
  • Any other documents relating to your employee in accordance with ESFA funding rules
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End Point Assessment (EPA)

Select the University of Derby as your End Point Assessment organisation - for advice, support and quality assurance.

Find out moreFind out more