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Australian Apprenticeships are a good pathway into the workforce for school leavers and adults. They can also be used to upskill in an industry, or reskill into a new industry.

This page has information for career advisers who are assisting students and clients. We answer apprenticeship and traineeship questions and give an overview of how Australian Apprenticeships work. Learn how to help people identify job pathways that suit them and take the next steps to get an apprenticeship or traineeship.

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Questions for Career Conversations

What are apprenticeships and traineeships?

Australian Apprenticeships include apprenticeships and traineeships. These are a combination of paid employment and study towards a vocational qualification. They can be done post-school or as an Australian School-based Apprenticeship.

All apprentices and trainees must find an employer willing to take them into an Australian Apprenticeship, and therefore must be legally allowed to work in Australia. All Australian Apprentices must be signed up under a contract of training by an Apprenticeship Network provider.

students sitting around a table discussing career options with a career adviser

What is involved in an Australian Apprenticeship?

Australian Apprentices and Trainees undertake a combination of on-the-job training through their employment and off-the-job training at a Registered Training Organisation, such as a TAFE or private provider.

On completion, Australian Apprentices are awarded a formal qualification at a Certificate, Diploma or Advanced Diploma level by their Registered Training Organisation. This can lead into higher level qualifications including university studies, and may count towards eligibility criteria. Trade qualifications may also lead to trade papers and licences in some areas.

Australian School-based Apprenticeships may count towards the student's high school certificate of education.

During their training apprentices and trainees gain between 12 months and 4 years of employment experience. This training relates directly to the development of skills needed in the workplace. Apprentice and trainee graduates have the highest rates of employment of any education graduates, including university!

What can be done as an apprenticeship or traineeship?

Australian Apprenticeships cover 50 industries and thousands of occupations. Industries range from Construction, Plumbing and Services through to Business Services, and occupations from Hairdressers and Electricians to Dog Groomers and Surveillance Investigators. There is a huge range of work types that can be done across these industries and occupations.

Apprenticeships and traineeships can be done from Certificate II to Advanced Diploma level. Certificate III's are the most common qualifications for apprenticeships and traineeships. You can explore the range of Australian Apprenticeships by industry, occupation title and certificate level through the Job Pathways Charts.

How do you find an Australian Apprenticeship job?

An employment opportunity is core to an Australian Apprenticeship. This means that anyone wanting to start an apprenticeship or traineeship must first find an employer.

Job hunting for an apprenticeship or traineeship job is similar to finding any other type of entry level position. Job ads are one way to find a position, but contacting employers directly is also a great way to find positions. Group Training Organisations, who hire apprentices and trainees and host them to employers, are also a good way to find a position.

What are pre-apprenticeships?

A pre-apprenticeship is an entry level course that provides a path into an apprenticeship or traineeship. They are not a requirement of an apprenticeship or traineeship, but some employers do prefer hiring people who have done one.

Pre-apprenticeships can give you a good indication of whether you are suited to a particular industry. They will also give you some basic skills for when you start a role in that industry.

You can search for pre-apprenticeships by industry group and location.

Man with a backpack staring at the sky contemplating his future

What training is involved in an Australian Apprenticeship?

All apprenticeships and traineeships involve studying towards a vocational education and training qualification. The training varies depending on the qualification, location, and the arrangement between the employer and training provider. Some apprentices and trainees may do some study online, while others will be classroom based.

The employer will also train the apprentice or trainee on the job. This is an important part of any Australian Apprenticeship, to develop the work skills needed for that job.

What are the language, literacy and numeracy requirements for this training?

Language, literacy and numeracy skills are an important foundation for the training that will be done as an apprenticeship or traineeship. Higher level qualifications typically require higher literacy and numeracy skills.

The Practice Aptitude Quizzes allow someone to assess their literacy and numeracy abilities. These quizzes assess the skills required for an entry-level position and are contextualised to the industry.

Learn more about Language, Literacy and Numeracy

Visit our Job Pathways Charts for more information about pathways to apprenticeships and traineeships

Find descriptions of Australian apprenticeship and traineeships occupations

Test yourself with over 30 Practice Aptitude Quizzes for apprenticeships and traineeships

Information for Students

Information for Students

The Students section has information targeted at school students who are researching possible career options. Content is curated to help students identify what types of roles and industries they may be interested in. It will help them decide if an Australian Apprenticeship is the right pathway for them.

Students
Information for Job Hunters

Information for Job Hunters

The Job Hunters section has information for people looking for an apprenticeship or traineeship position. There is information and tips on the best ways to find a position, a list of job search sites, and post-recruitment information helping job hunters prepare for the roles they are applying for.

Job Hunters

The Career Industry Council of Australia is the national peak body for the career industry

Find out more

Contact us with any questions about Australian Apprenticeships

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