Degree apprenticeships dominated by students from more affluent areas,

More needs to be done to ensure disadvantaged and underrepresented young people have access to degree apprenticeships, which combine paid work with study, the Office for Students (OfS) stated in March 2019.  

Only 13 per cent of place filled at degree-level apprenticeships were the most disadvantaged students. Degree level apprenticeships were originally launched to help widen access to higher education and fill skill gaps.

Meanwhile in 2016-17, 28 per cent of young people from the most advantaged areas undertook these qualifications - which are paid for by the employer and government.


Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of the OfS, said: “It is vital to widen opportunities for disadvantaged learners to access and succeed in degree apprenticeships, and there is further to go to encourage minority ethnic and disabled learners to follow this route.”

she added that the profile of degree apprenticeships needs to be raised and prospective apprentices need to be given high quality information, advice and guidance about their options.

There were only 11,000 degree-level apprenticeships in 2017-18, government statistics show.

Sue Richardson, managing director at Hygiene Sue agrees with director of policy and advocacy at think tank Higher Education Policy Institute, Rachel Hewitt - “Degree apprenticeships still aren’t well known about by students and so these kinds of opportunities are being picked up by students from affluent areas first.”

Sue also pointed out that pupils in some areas of the country have to travel 12 times further for degree apprenticeship opportunities than those in London as employers are often based in more affluent areas.

If you are interested in learning more about our courses and apprenticeships call Sue Richardson 01892 524957 or email