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CVER Briefing Note
An analysis of the duration and achievement of apprenticeships in England
Matthew Bursnall, Vahé Nafilyan and Stefan Speckesser September 2017
Paper No' CVERBRF004:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: I26; I28; C55

Tags: apprenticeship; united kingdom; returns to education

For the cohort of all 516,880 intermediate and advanced apprenticeships starting in England in 2011/12, we find that one third were withdrawn and a further 10 per cent were not completed within 36 months. We find that completion is strongly related to measures of prior achievement (full Level 2 or 3 qualifications) and we observe substantial variation by framework, i.e. apprentices are more likely to achieve if they choose certain vocational areas instead of others. On-going apprenticeship reform should more clearly look at such indicators to evaluate whether reforms actually increase individual achievement or similar outcomes. Another implication is to provide better information for those interested in apprenticeships on expected outcomes. For example, the ‘findanapprenticeship’ website could offer a tool for potential apprentices to insert personal characteristics, and be given information on the probability of achievement and expected labour market outcomes for a person with these characteristics.