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Two-thirds of parents grade apprenticeships as top career choice

17 August 2016 - 66% of parents would tell their children that doing an apprenticeship is a great way to train and get paid for the right job in their chosen field according to a survey1 commissioned by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT. Over half of the parents surveyed would also encourage their child to do an IT apprenticeship as a way of starting a career in IT.


Lucy Ireland, Deputy CEO of BCS L&D Ltd, part of BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, explains: “With the Government pledging to create 3 million new apprenticeships by 2020 now is an ideal time for young people who want to start their career in IT, as well as people looking for a new career. It’s great that parents are recognising the value of apprenticeships which provide a world of opportunity.”


The Institute survey found that 71% of parents think it is important for their child to gain work experience to develop practical skills.


Lucy adds: “With the skills gap in IT ever growing there is huge demand for IT professionals. An apprenticeship offers young people a wealth of new lasting knowledge and skills including a hands-on approach to learning while earning.”


Research has found that in the UK, within sectors such as engineering, women make up a lower proportion of apprentices than a decade ago.2 The Institute believes that IT apprenticeships have a vital role to play in helping to fill the emerging skills gap the profession faces and is calling on parents and employers to support apprenticeship schemes. IT is currently the 6th most popular sector for apprenticeships after business, health, retail, engineering and construction; the Institute wants to see that being higher.


Lucy continues: “Apprenticeships are a great career choice for both girls and boys. For those choosing a career path apprenticeships can offer fantastic opportunities.”


The Institute offers qualifications and provides information about working in the industry, along with career paths to help individuals map out their career potential and next steps. Last year, it launched the Register for IT Technicians (RITTech) - a UK standard to recognise and represent technical staff. Apprentices who gain a level 4 accredited IT apprenticeship will be eligible to apply for a place on the professional register. 


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In 2014/15, there were 499,900 apprenticeship starts in England, 14% more than the previous year. The Government also announced a target of 3 million new apprenticeship over the course of its administration and will introduce a levy on companies to encourage them to take on apprentices. Briefing Paper Number 06113, 5 January 2015 Apprenticeship Statistics: England (1996-2015).


1 Survey was run by Vital Research and Statistics Ltd on behalf of BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT between 22/01/2016-27/01/2016, among a sample size of 2000 parents with children under 18 in education.


2 Based on figures from charity organisation the Young Women’s Trust.