Level 6 Degree Apprenticeships: Product Design and Development Engineer

Group of engineers working together

Curious about apprenticeships but don’t want to miss out on getting your degree? Thankfully, it’s not a black or white decision. Degree apprenticeships offer the best of both worlds, helping you to train whilst on the job, and get a degree in a relevant field simultaneously. If this piques your interest, read on to learn all about the Product Design and Development Engineer Apprenticeship!

What will you learn on Level 6 Product Design and Development Engineer apprenticeships?


In this degree apprenticeship you will learn to work on a host of production stages. Creation, modification, componentry and more will support activities ranging from early concept feasibility through to computer aided design and more. You will work in prototyping, concepting, assembly, testing, and validation in real life scenarios with suppliers and managers.

Training is hosted in a phased approach. Firstly, you will undergo a foundation phase. This will include intensive off the job training on core engineering skills notwithstanding:

  • How to comply with statutory requirements and safety requirements.
  • How to effectively use, interpret and evaluate a range of engineering data sources.
  • Organising work efficiently and effectively. Managing engineering resources when completing tasks.
  • Producing components using hand fitting techniques and producing mechanical assemblies.
  • Producing Electrical or Electronic Drawings or CAD Models using a CAD system.
  • Preparing and using lathes, milling and other general or specialist high tech equipment.
  • Applying mechanical, electrical and electronic devices and equipment.
  • Using computer software packages to assist with engineering activities.
  • Producing and managing engineering project plans.

These skills ensure your readiness for the workplace and are subsequently transferable across multiple career paths. The foundation phase typically takes 1400 hours of Vocational Guided Learning to complete. Additionally you will have to demonstrate under independent test conditions your ability to deploy your skills before you progress to Phase 2.


Phase 2 is where degree apprenticeships really shine. This development phase focuses on applying your knowledge and enabling you to work without supervision. In addition, you’ll develop specialist areas and deepen your general engineering skills on work placements. As a result of phase 2 completion, you’ll have deepened your skills in:

  • Project Management in undertaking engineering activities
  • Establishing design briefs, presenting and discussing technical proposals
  • Managing and controlling product design change
  • Supporting team feasibility design reviews
  • Demonstrating technical and commercial management in planning.

At the end of this 5 – 6 year degree apprenticeship you’ll receive an HND or Foundation Degree, and a BSc (Hons) or BEng (Hons) in Engineering. At the same time you’ll have gained a plethora of on the job experience with core engineering skills in:

  • Mathematics and science for engineers.
  • Materials and manufacture.
  • Mechanical/electrical and electronic principles and applications.
  • Statics and dynamics.
  • How to undertake and apply business-led projects.
  • Engineering operations and business management.
  • Applying advanced technology techniques.

What do you need to apply for degree apprenticeships?

There are no hard rules here. Individual employers will set out criteria for their respective apprenticeships, however, we typically suggest the following:

  • 5 GCSE’s at grade C or above including Maths, English and a Science related subject.
  • Any number of A Levels at grade C or above in both a Mathematical and Science/Technology base subject.
  • OR 90 + credits in an Engineering BTEC.

Moreover, beyond these requirements employers in this field typically look for the following sets of behavioural attributes in their hiring process:

  • Strong work ethic.
  • Logical thinking.
  • Problem Solving oriented.
  • High Focus.
  • Personal responsibility.
  • Clear communicator.
  • Team player.
  • Adaptable.
  • Self-motivated.
  • Willing to learn.

What can degree apprenticeships help you do once you’ve graduated?

Graduating class of students throwing their caps in the air together. A key component of degree apprenticeships.

Not only is this a phenomenal opportunity to earn a minimum of £24k yearly, you will also gain an engineering degree in the process! In due time, more experienced design and development engineers earn up to £50k yearly. Completing the Product Design and Development Engineer apprenticeship will certainly set you on a career path with multiple doors. You can work in construction, engineering, renewable energy and much more. In the meantime, to get a taste for what jobs you could be in line for you at the end of your apprenticeship, be sure to browse Totaljobs.


Above all, the Level 6 Product Design and Development Engineer Degree Apprenticeship offers an unparalleled route into engineering careers. You will have the opportunity to gain on the job experience whilst earning a stable salary. Markedly, it will only take a couple more years than a traditional degree. Furthermore, you’ll learn transferable skills. Whether you decide to work in engineering or not, this skills and the years of work experience you’ll gain will set you in good stead across many career routes. Make sure to visit prospects.ac.uk for some inspiration on what you can do with your degree. Lastly, don’t forget to visit Apprenticetips.com for information on a host of apprenticeships and links to our social platforms.

Level 2 – Furniture Manufacturer Apprenticeship

Are you passionate about making, building, and restoring statement features? Free your creativity with a Furniture Manufacturer Apprenticeship. You will have the opportunity to work in an industry that has an annual turnover more than £12 billion! Carry on reading to find out if this apprenticeship is for you.

Key Responsibilities Of A Furniture Manufacturer 

The furniture, furnishings and interiors industry is significant to the UK economy. It is essential for the apprentice to work to agreed targets of output and quality standards. You should have a good work ethic, be able to work effectively, independently and be able to work as part of a team.

Job Titles 

The Level 2 Furniture Manufacturer Apprenticeship will help you to develop a wide range of key skills appropriate to the different occupations in the industry. This apprenticeship covers some of the following occupational areas – General furniture manufacturer, Bed manufacturer, Modern upholsterer, Furniture maker, Furniture designer, Cabinet maker, Mattress maker, Headboard maker and Divan maker. The apprentice will take the route that is best suited to the business they work in. Workplaces can be wide ranging from small workshops to large factories.

Foreman teaching apprentice working with tools

Furniture Manufacturer Knowledge, Behaviours & Skills 

Core requirements of a level 2 Furniture Manufacturer consist of KSB’s (knowledge, skills, and behaviours). Some of the following qualities will be required to ensure success in your future role as well as being able to meet the company’s targets. Here are some of the key required knowledge: 

  • Industry – Knowledge and understanding of the general background of the furniture industry.
  • Organisation – Knowledge and understanding of the company you are working in.
  • Materials – Knowledge and understanding of industry materials.
  • Customers – Understanding customer expectations.
  • Quality Standards – Know the quality standards which apply to the products and how to check that these have been met.
  • Knowledge and understanding of the relevant health, safety and environmental requirements and regulations. Also understanding sustainability within the industry.

Here are some of the key required skills: 

  • Maintain tools and equipment – Perform regular maintenance tasks on machinery, tools and equipment used.
  • Problem solving – Identify issues quickly, solve problems and apply appropriate solutions.
  • Achieve quality and output targets – High attention to detail, must monitor and check work meets specifications.
  • Health and Safety – Comply with health, safety and environmental requirements, relevant regulations, and industry standards/codes of practice at all times.

Here are some of the key required behaviours:

  • Collaboration and Adaptability – Listen, learn and accept changing priorities and working requirements. Work effectively with others in a team whilst maintaining effective professional working.
  • Time Management – Ability to complete work to a schedule.
  • Pride in the workplace – Organise workspace for efficiency and effectiveness.

English & Maths

For apprentices that have not yet achieved Level 2 English and Maths, they must achieve this level during their apprenticeship, prior to taking their EPA (End Point Assessment).

Furniture Manufacturer Assessment Overview 

Typically, the duration of this apprenticeship is 24 months to complete. This duration may differ depending on the candidate’s progression. Assessment methods consist of the apprentice’s portfolio of work, knowledge tests and observations in areas such as health and safety, occupational area skill, knowledge, and behaviours.


The Level 2 Furniture Manufacturer is an excellent starting point for anyone looking to pursue a career within the industry. The knowledge, skills and behaviours within this apprenticeship will not only be transferable but will also open a range of opportunities. It will give you the chance to learn on the job, start your career, and progress within the sector. Do you think this apprenticeship is for you? Apply today!

Person drawing furniture sketches in notebook

For more detail on this apprenticeship, visit Institute For Apprenticeships.

Material Cutter Apprenticeship – Level 2

Level 2 Material Cutter Apprenticeship

Love working with fabrics, have a keen eye for detail and looking for a hands-on role? If you answered yes to the above, then this Level 2 Material Cutter Apprenticeship is a great route for you to launch an exciting career in the fashion and textiles industry. In addition to this, as an apprentice, you will be paid a full time salary whilst you learn.

Associated Job Titles of a Material Cutter

  • Fabric Cutter
  • Manufacturing Cutter
  • Sample Cutter
  • Textile Cutter
  • Cutting Operative
  • Pattern Cutter

What is Fabric or Material Cutting?

Material cutting is one of the earliest stages in the process of garment or textile creation. Broadly speaking a Material Cutter is responsible for the preparation of fabrics by hand or machine-cutting to exact measurements or through the use of templates, and preparation of the various components for the next assembly stage.

A person hand-cutting a fabric template

Fabric and Textile Cutting Employers

Employers of fabric cutters can range from very large manufacturers supplying well-known high street brands, to small boutiques creating couture pieces. Experienced cutters may go on to start their own businesses, making bespoke garments.

Entry Criteria for Level 2 Material Cutter Apprenticeship

Qualifications in:

  • Mathematics
  • English

What if I Don’t Have the Minimum Qualifications?

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) will fund apprentices to achieve qualifications in English or Maths (or both), if you do not already meet the minimum requirements.

If you would to know more about meeting these requirements, or if you are unsure about certificates you have obtained abroad, then please read more on the gov.co.uk website.

Core Competencies for a Material Cutter

Exactly what would be expected of you as a Material Cutter is dependent on your employer and your level of expertise. However, as a minimum, the following would be expected of you:

  • An interest in fashion
  • A good eye for detail
  • Ability to work with speed and accuracy
  • Technical drawings skills (by hand and computer)
  • Good collaboration and team working skills
  • Ability to interpret design drawings

Important note: This job can be physically demanding, involving the lifting of large rolls of fabric and with much time spent standing, as such, it is important for candidates to consider this before applying.

Expected Entry Level Salary

Starting salaries range from £12,000 per year, progressing to £25,000 for mid-level cutters, and up to £35,000 for a high-level textile cutter. However, your salary can be higher if you seek further training to become multi-skilled or are employed by a luxury brand.

Technical Details of the Apprenticeship

Level: 2
Route: Engineering and manufacturing
Minimum duration: 12 months (this does not include the EPA period)
Maximum funding: £5,000

Fabric scissors and tape measure on top of denim jeans

How to Make the Cut

Over the course of the 12 month training, you will be expected to record your learnings through the creation of a portfolio. Due to the practical nature of the work, your written portfolio may also include, but is not limited to:

  • Video documentation, with the apprentice in view at all times
  • Witness statements
  • Labelled photographs
  • Recorded workplace policies and documents

After your portfolio of evidence has been submitted and you have completed the expected number of training hours, you will be invited for an interview as part of your End Point Assessment. Your assessor will for the demonstration of specific skills, knowledge and behaviours. After which, you will be awarded your grade, a pass, merit or distinction. In the unlikely event you fail, you will be able to retake parts of the course in order to pass.

In conclusion

Apprenticeships present a unique opportunity for individuals to take a big step into an industry they may have little knowledge of or prior training in, but with the additional benefit of being able to actively learn whilst still earning.

This apprenticeship is a great option for anyone wanting to work within the technical side of garment production. There are also higher level qualifications you could pursue to continue to build on you new skillset. Finally, there are no shortage of jobs to apply for in this industry.

Not quite the role you are looking for? Explore more opportunities in manufacturing and engineering.

What is the EPA (End Point Assessment)?

2 small images of a the text digital marketing and a ipad

If you are currently on an apprenticeship program that is concluding, then you may have heard the term EPA (End Point Assessment) which is the End Point Assessment and takes place at the end of the apprentice program. After an apprenticeship has completed 3 exams in Principles of coding, Marketing principles and the Google Analytics individual qualification., the EPA will be the next step.

The EPA is the final stage in an apprentice’s journey before a grade is awarded. It consists of a:

  • Portfolio
  • A project conducted away from the workplace
  • Employer reference
  • Interview

Each of the above will be assessed by an independent assessor and then award the apprentice with a pass, merit, or distinction grade.  Using different assessment standards, the apprentice is assessed on the quality of work, the application of skills, knowledge and behaviours specified in the standards.

Even though the EPA sounds daunting the apprentice would have already acquired skills without even releasing it such as:

  • Managing, planning, specifying, leading, and reporting on digital marketing projects.
  • Applying a marketing mix to meet customers’ expectations.        
  • Implementing content for the different audiences, and online channels and creating clear CTA and user’s journey
  • Applying the 4 marketing principles:
  • Product
  • Price
  • Place
  • Promotion
  • Interpreting, communicating, and briefing internal and external stakeholders on digital business requirements.
  • An understanding of the principles of coding
  • Managing and optimising key channels and content within a digital marketing plan.
Assessment methods
What are the assessment methods?

The 4 elements of the EPA in more detail.

Summative Portfolio

A collection of work that includes evidence of the knowledge, competence, and behaviour of the apprentice. Competencies that could be included within the portfolio are written communication, research, technologies, data, and customer service.

Synoptic Project

This project is like the other projects that the apprentices would have completed within their duration of being an apprentice., but this will take place away from the workplace.  This project will also not be related to the apprentice’s current place of employment and will take place over 5 days. But will include previous competencies that they should be familiar with.

Employer Reference

A statement shows how the apprentice has demonstrated technical competencies required from the apprenticeship standard within their day-to-day role. Including specific details of what the apprentice does, how they do it and whom they did it with, where this is applicable.


The final part of the assessment will be an interview conducted by an independent assessor. Talking points will include what and how an apprentice has done and how they have done it.  The independent assessor will also have marked the portfolio and the synoptic project.

The interview will cover what an apprentice has:

  • submitted in the portfolio
  • produced in the synoptic project
  • cover the standard of their work, as evidenced in the portfolio and the project
  • approached the work submitted in the portfolio and the project

 After the interview, the grading choice will be given. An EPA is the final hurdle for an apprentice and once completed the apprentice will then receive a certificate to confirm the official, industry-recognised apprenticeship qualification.

What next?
What next?

What next?

Once you have finished your current apprenticeship you may be left wondering what now?

Well, you can go on to further study digital marketing by completing different levels of apprenticeship such as:

Level 4 – Marketing Executive Apprenticeship

Roles: Marketing Executive, Marketing Manager, Marketing Specialist, Marketing & Communications Executive, Marketing Account Manager

If you would like to learn more about Digital Marketing, check out our other articles here.

Duration: 15 months

Level 6 – Marketing Manager Apprenticeship

Roles: Digital Marketing Executive, Marketing & Communications Executive, Social Media Manager, SEO Specialist, Marketing Campaign Manager, Executive Content Creator, Digital Marketing Account Manager, Social Media Specialist, Digital Marketing Lead

Duration: 36 months

If you would like to learn more about Digital Marketing, check out our other articles here. or you can find more information here or get in touch by contacting us via LinkedIn or Twitter.

What is a Level 4 automation and controls engineering technician?

Image of a laptop with a yellow hard hat.

If you have recently completed your Level 3 qualification, have you thought of becoming a Level 4 automation and controls engineering technician apprentice?

The Level 4 automation and controls engineering technician apprenticeship is a 24-month programme working towards the occupational standard with a minimum of 20% off-the-job training. All apprenticeships will spend a minimum of 12 months on the programme.

Do I qualify for Level 4?

As a gateway requirement and prior to taking the EPA (End Point Assessment), apprentices must complete all approved qualifications mandated in the Automation & Controls Engineering Technician standard.

These are level 4 technical engineering qualifications covering at least one of the following areas:

  • Electronic engineering
  • General engineering
  • Manufacturing engineering
  • Operations engineering
Graphical user interface
Description automatically generated with medium confidence
How Am I Assessed?

How am I assessed?

The apprenticeship is assessed by:

Assessment method 1: Project, Report and Presentation with Questioning which is graded on a final, pass, or distinction level.

Assessment method 2: Occupational Professional Discussion which is also graded on a final, pass, or distinction level.

English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Skills needed to become an automation and control engineering technician.

  • The ability to work safely in an industrial environment and where required, produce risk assessment/method statement documentation.
  • Be able to apply the principles of functional machinery and process safety including SIL (Safety Integrated Level) and PL (Performance Level) terminology
  • Production and interpretation of a range of technical documentation (device manuals, operating procedures, schematics, fault reports etc), and working with company documentation systems
  • Project engineering capabilities – Support of installation, commissioning, shut-down, start-up and maintenance/service/support of a wide range of systems and devices
  • Fault finding, diagnosis, rectification and reporting of automation control systems and controls applications via the utilisation of formal problem-solving methods and diagnostic tools/software
  • S5: Instrumentation configuration and calibration – Set up, calibrate and commission a wide variety of field-level instrumentation that interfaces to automation & control systems
  • configure, assist in commissioning and continued support of industrial network solutions at all hierarchical levels of control system integration using the requisite tools and or software
  • Make changes to existing systems or implement new configurations
  • Implement complex PLC/Robot program content and configurations to affect changes to increase availability and or efficiency of automation-controlled machinery and the ability to configure PLC and or Robot hardware and program a wide variety of PLCs and or Robot’s

What is expected of the apprentice?

For the Project and Presentation, the apprentice will be required to submit:

  • A portfolio, compiled throughout the apprenticeship and completed by the gateway. This must be sufficient enough to evidence that the apprentice can apply the knowledge, skills and behaviours required as mapped to assessment method 2.
  • There must be at least one piece of evidence relating to each knowledge, skill and behaviour mapped to AM2 although in most cases one piece of evidence will be referenced against more than one KSB requirement.
  •  It is expected that there will be a minimum of 14 and a maximum of 18 pieces of evidence to allow flexibility, but also encourage economical use of evidence for the number of KSBs to be covered.
  • The portfolio should contain written accounts of activities that have been completed and referenced against the knowledge, skills and behaviours, supported by appropriate evidence, including but not limited to photographic evidence and/or work products, reference guides, presentations, reports, schematics, specifications and work orders. Progress review documentation can also be included. The apprentice’s manager/mentor will typically support the development of the portfolio in accordance with organisational policy and procedures, although the EPAO will provide further guidance on the content.

Summary of the qualification including benefits

They are numerous benefits of a level 4 qualification including being recognised by a professional body such as the Institute of Engineering & Technology (IET)/Engineering or the Technician (EngTech) Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)/Engineering Technician (EngTech)

A typical job title is an automation and controls, and engineering technician. According to Glassdoor, the average base pay salary is £41,998 a year.

If you are interested but have not completed a Level 3 qualification, you can find more information here or get in touch by contacting us via LinkedIn or Twitter.  Or for an overall view of apprenticeships visit our website.

Fast-Track Into Your Career as an Associate Project Manager – Level 4 Apprenticeship

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Do you see yourself developing and pitching project’s across diverse industry sectors? Do you enjoy being a part of a team to achieve project outcomes? If you have identified with any of those, then you are in the right place. What better way to fast-start your career than diving straight into an Associate Project Manager Apprenticeship. Utilise and develop your transferable skills to help companies succeed in a substantial project.

What is an Associate Project Manager?

Behind every company’s success is a well-rounded Project Management Team. Projects can be developed and presented across many industry sectors. Large and small – they are all significant.

Covering everything from developing and pitching your project’s business case, managing budgets and risk management. An associate project manager understands what is required to be achieved and how it will be done.

With this Apprenticeship, you will be able to fast-track your career and develop skills in project management. You can use those skills to take on many job roles in this sector.

Is this role right for me?

All job roles require a specific level of knowledge before diving deeper into the role. A successful associate project manager utilizes resources with suitable skills, experience, and knowledge to work together in a motivated and well-rounded team, with clearly defined reporting lines, roles, responsibilities, and authorities. Here are the required pieces of knowledge to become an Associate Project Manager Apprentice:

  • Project governance
  • Stakeholder management
  • Project communication and context
  • Leadership
  • Scheduling, Budgeting, and Cost Control
  • Consolidated planning
  • Business case and benefits management
  • Project scheduling
  • Resource management
  • Project risk and issue management
  • Project quality
Man women reporting project planning analysing management

What skills am I required to have?

In this apprenticeship, it is expected to have a range of skills that are relevant to this job role. These skills can also be developed and worked on. Being trained by experts in the project management field will put you ahead of the competition for future job roles you take on. The required skills and behaviors are listed below:


  • Project governance – Project monitoring, reporting cycle to track, assess and interpret the performance of projects.
  • Stakeholder and communications management – Communicate to a variety of different audiences. Contribute to negotiations relating to project objectives.
  • Budgeting and cost control – Develop and agree on project budgets, monitor forecast and actual costs against them, and control changes.
  • Business case – Contribute to the preparation or maintenance of a business case including achieving required outcomes.
  • Scope management – Determine, control, and manage changes to the project, including assumptions, dependencies, and constraints.
  • Consolidated planning – Monitor progress against the consolidated plan and refine as appropriate.
  • Schedule management – Prepare and maintain schedules for activities aligned to project delivery.
  • Risk, and issue management – Respond to and manage issues within a defined governance structure.
  • Contract management and procurement – Facilitate a procurement process, contribute to the definition of contractual agreements and contribute to managing a contract.
  • Quality management – Develop a quality management plan, manage project assurance, and contribute to peer reviews.
  • Resource management – Develop resource management plans for project activities.


  • Collaboration and teamwork 
  • Leadership 
  • Effective and appropriate communication
  • Drive for results 
  • Integrity, ethics, compliance and professionalism
Project planning teamwork collaboration management

What are the entry requirements to become an Associate Project Manager Apprentice?

Individual employers will set their own entry requirements for their apprentices. Typically candidates will have achieved a grade C or above in at least 5 GCSEs including English and Mathematics. And, hold a minimum of 48 UCAS points or equivalent.

Additional Details

The typical duration of this apprenticeship will be 24 months.

Either before or during the apprenticeship, apprentices will be required to achieve level 2 qualifications in English and Mathematics. Prior to taking the end-point assessment (EPA).


When you complete the course, you’ll have many opportunities in project management. From working as a dedicated project manager to related roles such as program managers, project planners, and more.

If you’re new to project management and looking to develop your existing career with practical, widely valued skills in this essential discipline, this apprenticeship program is for you.

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