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Workload of Degree Apprenticeships

Hello

I'm in the final stages of the interview process for a degree apprenticeship in software engineering. From my research on various forums and YouTube videos, it's evident that the workload for this program is quite high.

At 30 years old, with a foundation degree and 12 years of work experience, this represents a significant career shift for me. Balancing family responsibilities and homeownership, it's crucial for me to gauge how the workload will impact my life. While I'm no stranger to hard work, my priorities have evolved.

Seeking insights from those familiar with the workload associated with this apprenticeship. Any advice or experiences shared would be greatly appreciated.
Reply 1
Original post by aunt_beru
Hello
I'm in the final stages of the interview process for a degree apprenticeship in software engineering. From my research on various forums and YouTube videos, it's evident that the workload for this program is quite high.
At 30 years old, with a foundation degree and 12 years of work experience, this represents a significant career shift for me. Balancing family responsibilities and homeownership, it's crucial for me to gauge how the workload will impact my life. While I'm no stranger to hard work, my priorities have evolved.
Seeking insights from those familiar with the workload associated with this apprenticeship. Any advice or experiences shared would be greatly appreciated.

I finished my mech eng degree apprenticeship a few years back.
The workload can be ruthless, but gets easier as you figure out how to be efficient in self teaching, assignment writing, and exam prep.

Sometimes my assignment deadlines would be grouped, or fall around exam time. I’d be working/studying 12 hours a day, including weekends, for a couple of months a year.

The university part is the least valuable in terms of professional development. Though the apprenticeships themselves are very valuable. I gained more from being “on the job”, but it’s ~5 years slog for what might pave the way for a better >30y career.
Reply 2
Original post by Chris2892
I finished my mech eng degree apprenticeship a few years back.
The workload can be ruthless, but gets easier as you figure out how to be efficient in self teaching, assignment writing, and exam prep.
Sometimes my assignment deadlines would be grouped, or fall around exam time. I’d be working/studying 12 hours a day, including weekends, for a couple of months a year.
The university part is the least valuable in terms of professional development. Though the apprenticeships themselves are very valuable. I gained more from being “on the job”, but it’s ~5 years slog for what might pave the way for a better >30y career.


Thank you Chris, very detailed reply.

Did your employer give you any study time during the week? And did your job tasks count towards any of your assignments?

Do you also do the same amount of assessments as a normal student?
Reply 3
Original post by aunt_beru
Thank you Chris, very detailed reply.
Did your employer give you any study time during the week? And did your job tasks count towards any of your assignments?
Do you also do the same amount of assessments as a normal student?
It varies depending on the employer, course, and university.

I was on day release, 1 day a week. If I didn’t have to go into university, I’d get that day off to revise and do assignment work anyway. My university day could be as long as 9am to 9pm. The majority of my studies was done outside standard working hours.

I had some experimental and project work that were flexible that I did work based projects for. It’s difficult to tie them to a business need unless it’s research or continuous improvement based. You have to submit project work write-ups as part of a portfolio which covers the competency assessment portion, separate to university study.

I studied a BEng, which took 5 years part time. I covered just over half the modules full time students cover in a year.
Reply 4
Original post by Chris2892
It varies depending on the employer, course, and university.
I was on day release, 1 day a week. If I didn’t have to go into university, I’d get that day off to revise and do assignment work anyway. My university day could be as long as 9am to 9pm. The majority of my studies was done outside standard working hours.
I had some experimental and project work that were flexible that I did work based projects for. It’s difficult to tie them to a business need unless it’s research or continuous improvement based. You have to submit project work write-ups as part of a portfolio which covers the competency assessment portion, separate to university study.
I studied a BEng, which took 5 years part time. I covered just over half the modules full time students cover in a year.


Thanks Chris. That’s pretty much aligned with what I had in mind. I’ve got a lot of questions for them at the interview so I should get a feel for it based on that

Appreciate all your input.
Reply 5
Original post by aunt_beru
Thanks Chris. That’s pretty much aligned with what I had in mind. I’ve got a lot of questions for them at the interview so I should get a feel for it based on that
Appreciate all your input.

I didn’t do A levels and your course likely has a lot of math. I’m assuming its been a while or it might be a bit of leap like it was for me.

Khanacademy was a life saver for me when self teaching math. Free to use, well structured, and self paced. I’d make a start as soon as you can. You can leverage that in your interviews as well to show proactiveness to learn and overcome skill gaps etc.,

I’ve done 4 apprenticeships and the interviews are basically a risk assessment for the employer. They take the risks and the biggest costs are the time of other colleagues to teach you.
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 6
Original post by Chris2892
I didn’t do A levels and your course likely has a lot of math. I’m assuming its been a while or it might be a bit of leap like it was for me.
Khanacademy was a life saver for me when self teaching math. Free to use, well structured, and self paced. I’d make a start as soon as you can. You can leverage that in your interviews as well to show proactiveness to learn and overcome skill gaps etc.,
I’ve done 4 apprenticeships and the interviews are basically a risk assessment for the employer. They take the risks and the biggest costs are the time of other colleagues to teach you.


That’s great insight. Maths is definitely something I haven’t done for a while so will have a look at that.

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