• Question: Are apprenteic better than collages? As in do you think its better to do hands on learning while getting paid which could lead to a job or learning in collage with a teacher.

    Asked by date1bake on 22 May 2024.
    • Photo: Rebecca von Hellfeld

      Rebecca von Hellfeld answered on 22 May 2024:


      I think there is a benefit to both options, and it really depends on how you best learn and live. I would have been a useless apprentice because I need time to understand things, read them, research them, and then do them. So i went through the “school” route (college/university). I also got hands on experience there, to be fair.
      Many of my friends went for the apprenticeship route, with loads of cool hands on experience from the start, “learning by doing” from really skilled teachers.

    • Photo: Rachael Eggleston

      Rachael Eggleston answered on 22 May 2024:


      I think it depends entirely on what you want to do moving forward and how you learn best- through a book or through hands-on work? I don’t think either one is better or worse than the other.

    • Photo: Martin McCoustra

      Martin McCoustra answered on 22 May 2024:


      I agree with Rebecca… There’s benefits to both going to college and going out and doing an apprenticeship. However, there is a middle ground that combines the advantages of both called a degree apprenticeship. You might want to look into those as an alterative to the others.

    • Photo: Mark Ridgill

      Mark Ridgill answered on 22 May 2024:


      For practical subjects (including chemistry) I’d say apprenticeships are better. Studying full time is an experience but after 4 years of work and many hours in the lab apprentices are excellent scientists

    • Photo: Sarah-Jane Potts

      Sarah-Jane Potts answered on 22 May 2024:


      I think it depends on what job you want to end up with and how you enjoy learning. I know people who have done apprenticeships for places like Jaguar Land Rover and have loved it. If you really like a particular company and don’t want the tuition fees, then they are a great option. Some companies will also sponsor you to do a degree later on. I went straight to Univerisy and studied Product Design Engineering, which I absolutly loved. I am quite an adademic person and I like a combination of theory and practical based learning, so this worked best for me. University also provided me with a broad skill set which allowed me to look at a wide range of jobs and companies, enabling me to choose my path later on when I was ready. It also allowed me to become a research engineer and lecturer, as my jobs have required a doctorate. However, every course and apprenticeship has different things on offer. It’s worth exploring both options and seeing which one will help you go on the journey that you will find most rewarding and suitable for how you learn and work.

    • Photo: Caroline Roche

      Caroline Roche answered on 23 May 2024:


      If you know what you want to do and there’s a company that’s offering an apprenticeship for it, I would recommend doing that. You get your degree after 5 years, experience and a salary while you are doing it.
      But if you are like me, where I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do just that I wanted to work in a science industry. I would recommend going to college just so you can experience different things and find the one you want to do.
      It was easy enough for me to change the subjects I studied to suit the direction I wanted to go once I figured it out. It’s possible with an apprenticeship but not as easy, as the company or college you work with may not support it so you might have to move your apprenticeship somewhere else.

    • Photo: Fran Biggin

      Fran Biggin answered on 24 May 2024:


      I think apprenticeships are great, but so is more academic focused learning at a college or university. Which path you chose depends a lot on what career you want to go into, and how you learn best. If you enjoy learning by doing then an apprenticeship might be a good fit for you, but if you love learning from books and a more theoretical approach then college might suit better. There is also the very practical side of things like cost to consider. As you mention, apprenticeships come with a wage, whereas college courses and degrees cost money – also an important consideration! At the end of the day it’s important to pick what works best for you.

    • Photo: Alexander de Bruin

      Alexander de Bruin answered on 24 May 2024:


      It very much depends on you and what suits how you like to learn and develop yourself. There are lots of apprenticeship programmes that finish with you having the same degree qualifications as people that have gone to university, but you will also have work experience in that job. You can even do higher degrees like doctorates while working, though they tend to take more years to finish than if you were doing them full time. Apprentices in science roles are often kept within the company and they have been trained in exactly what that company needs. College/university learning is good if you prefer to spend all your time studying and learning from books and teachers with some practical work.

    • Photo: Callum Morris

      Callum Morris answered on 28 May 2024:


      It entirely depends what you want to do. In both companies I’ve worked in they support apprentices in both maintenance and process operations. These people come out with really good skills in their areas, and many have been known to convert their skills with part time degrees to move into the engineering skillpool which is really useful for those who came through the academic route of university.

    • Photo: Nick Lynch

      Nick Lynch answered on 28 May 2024:


      In thinking about this, I would ask you how you like to learn and what type of course you want to do?
      Some subjects are more aligned to apprentice courses while others suit a college style.
      For some you maybe able to do both. Some days in college some days @work

      An modern apprentice is a great way to learn in a job
      Make sure you ask them questions about the apprentice role and what you will learn
      Compare that to the course and see what you suits you better.

      Also do not forget to ask family and friends for advice too

    • Photo: Samet Sahin

      Samet Sahin answered on 28 May 2024:


      I think there is no straight answer to this. They both have pros and cons. It can depend on how you feel about different experiences if you like classroom learning with opportunities for hands-on experience then you can go for a collage. The apprenticeships might be restrictive in a way that they might be specific to a particular industry or role. I think it all starts with what would best suit you.

    • Photo: Liz Barron-Majerik

      Liz Barron-Majerik answered on 29 May 2024:


      You often need to go to college when you are doing an apprenticeship so sometimes you do both! It depends – if you have a good employer and you are earning – that is great! But if you can’t find a good employer then college teaches you what you need to know and develops your skills so you can still find a job in this area.

    • Photo: Abbie Young

      Abbie Young answered on 30 May 2024:


      For me personally, I prefer apprenticeships, as I am a visual and hands on learner, so I learn more when I am doing the job. Another perk is that you are getting paid and that most of the time, you will have a secure job at the end of the apprenticeship. However, some people prefer going to college or university to do their learning, which means that they will have more time to study and learn more about their subject.

    • Photo: Neil Barnby

      Neil Barnby answered on 31 May 2024:


      The new apprenticeship programmes are much better than they used to be, but I have no experience of them. I went to college and then university, but I do know people who have do the apprenticeship route. Essentially we are all working in the industry and that is the main point. So, I don’t really think one is better than the other, I think it is a case of personal choice. Which type of learning suits you is what would matter. Some people like education and some like to learn on the job, but both can lead to a successful career.

    • Photo: Rebecca Witton

      Rebecca Witton answered on 31 May 2024:


      Personally, i did the ‘classic’ route and went to university, however i wish apprenticeships were more widely available when i did go to uni, as i feel they are so valuable, especially if you’re a hands on learner like me, plus the benefit of getting paid and having that direct experience that so many uni graduates don’t have. I think a lot of it is dependent what you intend to study, what you want for a career and what way you learn best!

    • Photo: Rebecca Williams

      Rebecca Williams answered on 3 Jun 2024:


      I think it really depends on what careers you’d like to explore! I once had a young student as if she could do a PhD in real estate and I responded that she definitely could but this might not be the best path to actually become a real estate agent. Try reaching out to people who are already in careers you think you might enjoy and asking them which path they recommend.

    • Photo: Sharron Kenny

      Sharron Kenny answered on 5 Jun 2024:


      i think it depends on how you learn best and your personal circumstances. an aprenticeship gains a degree in 5yrs but you also have work experience and are paid during that time. university gets a degree quicker 3 years but then you have uni fees to pay and experience is still needed.

      i went the university route but if i was doing it all again now i would definetly look into apprentiships
      as i wouldnt have student debt which will take me alot of years now to pay back

    • Photo: Michael Schubert

      Michael Schubert answered on 6 Jun 2024:


      I don’t think either one is better than the other. Some people learn better when they do hands-on things and other people like more academic types of learning. Some people want careers that don’t have any kind of apprenticeship, so they have to go to university; other people want careers where on-the-job learning is very important.

      The best way forward is to think about what kinds of jobs you want to do and how you most enjoy learning, and then choose a school or apprenticeship that lets you do the things you love and learn in the way you like best!

    • Photo: Kirsty Lindsay

      Kirsty Lindsay answered on 10 Jun 2024:


      I think they both have their place: I enjoyed both, I learnt a lot from both, and I use the skills I learnt in my apprenticeship every day to help me in my academic job. For me, it was a really good foundation. At 17 I certainly enjoyed learning while earning money, and later it allowed me to go to university debt-free, but it didn’t take me all the places I wanted to go, so I’m glad I had the chance to go to university too!

    • Photo: David Bremner

      David Bremner answered on 19 Jun 2024:


      Both have their place and sometimes it can even be a combination of the two, thats how i did it. I started work at 17, worked for 4 days a week getting hands on training but 1 day a week i went to college and did the lectures etc until i got my degree. Instead of getting it in 3-4 years had i gone to university full time it took me 6-7 years to get my Bachelor in science.

      It depends on the person and what they want to do, one size does not fit all and each individual will decide which route they want to follow.

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