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FAQs for Students

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What is AATIS and how can this website help me?

The Australian Apprenticeships & Traineeships Information Service offers useful information and free resources for people considering career options, employers looking at recruitment and those providing support and advice.

For those still in school, and wondering what to do next, AATIS is a great place to start your research.  It has ideas about how to work out your ideal career, information about each industry and what apprenticeships and traineeships are available plus links to all the other organisations involved in an Australian Apprenticeship. There is also the Steps to an Australian Apprenticeship to help you get started.

If you are in the process of figuring out what might be the right career for you, use the Career Interest Explorer which matches your interests and aptitudes to occupations. For those who want to find out what a career looks like after doing an apprenticeship or traineeship, try the Job Pathways Charts by clicking on the industry of your choice. For those interested in commencing apprenticeships while in school, find more information about Australian School-based Apprenticeships.

Starting an Apprenticeship

At what age can I start an apprenticeship or traineeship?

Australian Apprenticeships are available to anyone of working age with eligibility to work in Australia.

There aren't specific school levels, certificates or other qualifications needed to start one, however employers can set requirements for their individual jobs.

Students can start an Australian Apprenticeship while at school

Should I do a pre-apprenticeship before starting an apprenticeship?

A pre-apprenticeship is entry-level training which can provide a pathway into the industry of your choice. Generally, they are offered in the traditional trades industries, such as Carpentry, Electrical, Plumbing and Automotive. Not all apprenticeships have a designated pre-apprenticeship course and not all apprenticeship courses allow credits from a pre-apprenticeship. A list of pre-apprenticeship courses can be found here.

Some employers in certain trades, especially the licenced trades such as electrical and plumbing, prefer apprentices to have completed a pre-apprenticeship so that they have basic skills before they begin work. It is important to remember that you do not work during a pre-apprenticeship program so you do not earn wages and in many cases you have to pay to do a pre-apprenticeship course.

Can I do an apprenticeship or traineeship while I am at school?

Yes, students can start an Australian Apprenticeship while at school.  

Australian School-based Apprenticeships (ASbA), also known as school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, are like any apprenticeship or traineeship but commenced part-time as part of your secondary schooling. You will earn a wage, train with an employer, and work towards an accredited qualification while completing your high school certificate.

Types of Apprenticeships

What is the difference between an apprenticeship and a traineeship?

The term ‘Australian Apprenticeships’ covers both apprenticeships and traineeships, which start when an employer creates a job and employs and trains staff using this method.

Apprenticeships and traineeships are established across 50 industries. Most people know about the common jobs like carpentry, plumbing, automotive mechanic and electrician. But there are thousands of other jobs that can be Australian Apprenticeships. 

We have listed below some of the most common differences, however, you need to check with your Apprentice Network Provider for the details of the apprenticeship or traineeship you are entering.





A traineeship is usually for a duration of 1 or 2 years. 

An apprenticeship is usually 3 to 4 years long


Traineeship wages are set across all industries by a separate award (National Training Wage)

Apprenticeship wages are set in each award and most industries are different


Traineeships can be from Certificate II to Diploma level

Apprenticeships are usually at Certificate III level


Where can I find information about Australian Apprenticeships in my state?

Each state and territory has slightly different guidelines and recognition regimes for apprenticeships and traineeships. There are also different incentives available in each state and territory. You can find more information using these links:

How can I find an apprenticeship or traineeship in a specific industry?

You can use the Job Pathways Charts to find out what apprenticeships and traineeships are available in different industries. Click on occupation titles you like to find out more information, including whether they are approved in your state or territory.

The Job and Training Descriptions are another good way to investigate what is available in different industries, and these are filtered by the state or territory you select.

Each state and territory has different apprenticeships and traineeships available, so you need to make sure you do a state search and be very careful that you have the correct information.

The other option to find this information is to contact your local Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider. It is their role to know what is available in your location.

If you can't find what you are looking for, please contact AATIS on 1800 338 022 or email your questions to contact@aatis.com.au.