Nearly half of young people believe apprenticeships are as valuable as a university degree
Monday, 05 March 2018
Students, parents and employers are becoming increasingly positive about the value of modern apprenticeship, a new study has suggested.
The survey of 1,000 young people and 1,000 parents by accountants Grant Thornton found that 77 per cent of students and 79 per cent of parents believe apprenticeships offer good career prospects. Almost half - 42 per cent - of young people now believe that apprenticeships and university degrees have the same value.
The findings were released ahead of Scottish Apprenticeship Week, which runs from 5-9 March.
Figures from Skills Development Scotland show the number of Modern Apprenticeship starts in 2016,17 was 26,262, slightly ahead of the target of 26,000. More than three-quarters were taken up by 16 to 24-year-olds.
Other findings in the survey data include the fact that 45 per cent of parents think a university degree delivers less value than it used to. Two-thirds of young people do not believe that a university degree is necessary to secure a well-paid job.
Half of young people surveyed who are currently at university said they do not believe their degree guarantees them a well-paid job.
Further questioning of 500 UK employers found similar positive sentiment about hiring apprentices, as providing training on the job also allows organisations to meet the skills requirements of their business "in an agile and flexible way". Half said they plan to recruit more apprentices than they do now in the next five years.
But while attitudes are improving, the survey suggests that the quality of advice and support available is not keeping pace. More than two-thirds of young people said the career advice they receive is not good, with the main sources of information being online (46 per cent), teachers (22 per cent) and parents (17 per cent).
"This changing attitude represents an evolution in the expectations of young people and parents when it comes to learning beyond school," said Andrew Howie, managing partner of Grant Thornton in Scotland.
"Add in rising living costs and it becomes clear why those looking at higher education options are increasingly seeing apprenticeships and other earn-as-you-learn routes as a positive route to a successful career."
You can read the full report here.
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