More higher and degree level apprenticeships planned at University of Suffolk after successful first year

University of Suffolk launched its first degree apprenticeships in healthcare practice and health an

University of Suffolk launched its first degree apprenticeships in healthcare practice and health and wellbeing in SEptember 2017 Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

Education inspectors have said the University of Suffolk is making reasonable progress in its new healthcare apprenticeships, one year on from their introduction.

Karen Hinton, head of student recruitment at the University of Suffolk said the first year of degree

Karen Hinton, head of student recruitment at the University of Suffolk said the first year of degree apprenticeships had gone well Picture: JAMES FLETCHER/UNIVERSITY OF SUFFOLK - Credit: Archant

Central Government last year announced new higher and degree level apprenticeships at universities, which combine academic knowledge with on-the-job learning and industry experience.

The University of Suffolk was one of those selected to run the new programmes, with first courses in healthcare assistant practitioners getting underway last September, alongside degree-level apprenticeships in chartered management, digital technology solutions and visiting nurses.

Education watchdog Ofsted carried out an inspection of the healthcare assistant practitioner course in July as part of a sample it is undertaking nationally, and in a report published last week said the university was making “reasonable progress” in all areas.

Karen Hinton, head of student recruitment and market development, said: “We have been really pleased with the first year.

“We have had excellent engagement with students working with a range of employers, which is what we expected.


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“We are now running again in this next academic year.”

Mrs Hinton said the university made sure it was developing apprenticeships in areas it already had expertise in, such as nursing and health, to help create high-quality courses that prepared students for the industry.

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Apprentices have been carrying out work in NHS trusts, other health and care organisations or local firms from across the region.

Ofsted said that the courses prepare apprentices effectively for their roles, and made students confident in their tasks.

It also praised the mix of face-to-face and online sessions alongside their work-based learning in developing teamwork and study skills.

The next development is for a senior leader masters degree apprenticeship, which is set to start this autumn.

Further apprenticeships in policing and social work are currently in development, after £200,000 of funding was granted by the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

Those courses are expected to launch within the next academic year, or in time for September 2019 intake.

To find out more about the higher and degree apprenticeships on offer, visit the university website here.

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