Overview of apprenticeship
An Advanced Apprenticeship is a job with an accompanying skills development programme designed by employers in the sector. It allows you to gain technical knowledge and real practical experience while being paid to do so. Along with functional and personal skills that are needed for your immediate job and future career you will learn through a mix of project based learning in the workplace, formal off the job training, and the opportunity to practice and embed new skills in a real work context.
Laboratory technicians work in a wide range of organisations, including but not exclusively, chemical, primary and secondary pharmaceutical, biotechnology, formulated products, nuclear companies; and analytical science services. A laboratory technician may carry out both routine and one-off laboratory testing and perform a variety of technical support functions across the organisation. In any context working safety and ethically is paramount and many companies operate under highly regulated conditions because of the need to control the quality and safety of products, for example medicines. Laboratory technicians are expected to work both individually and as part of a laboratory team. They are able to work with minimum supervision, taking responsibility for the quality and accuracy of the work that is undertaken. They are proactive in finding solutions to problems and identifying areas for improving the business.
Delivery Plan and Assessment
Learners will attend West Suffolk College one day a week for taught sessions, excluding half terms and holidays. In total, learners have to spend 20% of their time on programme completing Off-The-Job training, this includes their day release, and any shadow shifts. Apprentices will be supported by 1:1 meetings in the workplace by their dedicated Programme Tutor. Additional learning resources and information will be made available online to ensure a fully blended learning experience.
Learners will be required to complete an End Point Assessment at the end of their learning
Where will this course take me?
As well as ensuring full competence as a Laboratory Technician, this apprenticeship provides a foundation for potential progression to a role within the company, or to further qualifications within the Science sector.
Down to business, what can I do and what can I earn?
Your wage is decided by your employer however must meet the National Minimum Wage regulations https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates.
Whilst any entry requirements will be a matter for individual employers, typically an apprentice might be expected to have already achieved 5 GCSEs including Maths and English, Grade C or above or 4/5 (new grading). For this Apprenticeship, you need to have an A Level in Science or a Level 3 equivalent.
Apprentices without English and Maths at Level 2 must achieve these prior to taking their End Point Assessment.
On completion of the apprenticeship, you will have achieved:
- Full Laboratory Technician Level 3 Standard.
- Level 3 Laboratory Skills Certificate recognised by the Royal Society of Chemistry.
- Skills for Success - This module is designed by West Suffolk College to ensure you have all the personal skills and behaviours to succeed in the workplace.
- Any required Functional Skills in English or Maths.
How is this funded?
Apprentices are not required to contribute financially towards Apprenticeship training.
If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of £3 million or more, you will pay into an apprenticeship levy. This levy is then used to pay for the training element of the apprenticeship course. The total figure for the Apprenticeship is negotiated before enrolment and once confirmed will be taken in monthly payments from your account directly to us or paid to us via invoice should additional fees be required.
If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of under £3 million, the Government will fund 95% of the training fee meaning you will be required to contribute 5%. You may be required to contribute additional fees which we will invoice the company for. The additional fees will be made known and negotiated prior to the Apprentice enrolment.
There are additional incentives available if you are a small employer (under 50) and if you train/recruit a 16-18 year old or 19-24 year old with an Education Health and Care Plan.
Try out our apprenticeship levy calculator here
I'm interested. What should I do now?
You apply for an Apprenticeship in the same way you would apply for a job: find an apprenticeship vacancy, send in your CV or complete an application. We can help you with applications and give you interview advice. Please view the following page on our website to see our latest Apprenticeship vacancies.
Apprenticeship Vacancies: https://www.wsc.ac.uk/find-a-course/apprenticeships/vacancies
Alternatively, you can look on the GOV.UK website to see what other Apprenticeships vacancies may be available: https://www.findapprenticeship.service.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsearch
Employers - Please contact us to speak with a member of the Apprenticeship Team for more information and to organise a face to face visit.
Days & times
Please contact us for dates and further information