Opinion Former Video

£28 returned for every £1 spent on apprenticeships

A short animation about colleges, apprenticeships and higher education.


Further education colleges provide high-quality technical and professional education and training for young people, adults and employers.

And, with expert teaching delivered in industry-standard facilities, colleges are inspirational places to learn.

More than three quarters of a million 16 to 18 year-olds who choose to study in colleges - versus less than half a million studying in schools - are testament to that.

A further 2 million adults are enrolled, generating an additional £70 billion for the economy over their lifetimes.

The average further education college works with almost 600 businesses, enabling the sector to equip 2.9 million people with the skills the country needs to compete on the international stage.

One aspect that sets further education colleges apart is apprenticeships.

Every college offers an apprenticeship. With the average college training 1,200 apprentices, there are 297,000 apprentices in England, often training in one of the most critical sectors for the economy.

For example, half of all construction, engineering and manufacturing apprentices train at college.

And the economic return per £1 of Government funding for a level 3 apprenticeship is a staggering £28.

Colleges also play a key role in higher education provision across England. 

There are 159,000 people studying for a higher education qualification at college, with the sector delivering 85% of Higher National Certificates, 82% of Higher National Diplomas and 58% of foundation degrees.

College-taught higher education students are more satisfied with assessment and feedback than their peers attending universities.

And with 70% of college higher education students living within 25 miles of their institution, colleges provide higher education for local people from non-traditional backgrounds.

Through the courses and qualifications on offer, their geographic footprint, success rates and
economic contribution, the collective impact of colleges locally provides the foundation for the UK to compete internationally.

The Association of Colleges represents, supports and promotes the interests of further education and sixth form colleges in England.

To find out more, visit www.aoc.co.uk

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