Apprenticeships must last a minimum of 12 months and involve at least 20% off-the-job learning.
This 20% off-the-job learning is measured over the course of the apprenticeship and is an essential part of the apprenticeship and therefore must take place during employed time. See the Guide to 20% off the job learning for more information.
If learning activities must, by exception, take place outside of contractual hours we would expect this to be recognised (for example, through time off in lieu). We recognise that some apprentices may wish to undertake learning activities outside of their working hours, however learning undertaken outside paid employment (and therefore outside the apprenticeship) cannot be counted towards meeting the 20% requirement.
The off-the-job learning must be directly relevant to the apprenticeship framework or standard and must teach new knowledge, skills and behaviours that will contribute to the successful achievement of the apprenticeship.
What counts as off the job training?
- the teaching of theory such as lectures, workshops, role playing, simulation exercises and online learning
- practical training such as work shadowing, mentoring, industry visits and attending conferences
- learning support and time spent writing assessments/assignments
What doesn’t count as off the job training?
- English and maths (up to level 2)
- progress reviews or on-programme assessment needed for an apprenticeship framework or standard
- learning activities which take place outside the apprentice’s paid working hours
To decide whether a learning activity constitutes off-the-job learning, it may be helpful to consider it in comparison to activities undertaken by other staff that are fully occupationally competent.