Skip navigation

Coronavirus Covid-19 Degree Apprenticeship Updates for Employers

Information and advice for Employers with Degree Apprentices following the global Coronavirus outbreak

We know that many employers with degree apprentices will have questions or concerns, and we hope that these frequently asked questions will help with these. Please note that we will be updating this page regularly, as we receive new guidance or as the situation changes. We are here to support you, so please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions at all on rg.da.academic.support@northumbria.ac.uk.

If you were looking for general information for updates related to Covid-19 from the University they can be found here.

Are you continuing to deliver training and assessment remotely?

Yes we are.  Both learning material and assessments are available for students to access online via our Blackboard Virtual Learning Environment. Adjustments to content have been made where necessary to make appropriate for online delivery.

Students will continue to receive learning and pastoral support from university staff.

Have apprentices been informed about what is expected of them?

Staff are in contact with apprentices regarding online teaching and assessment via Blackboard.  In addition we have sent individual communications to all degree apprenticeship students with information about how the University’s response to Covid-19 applies to their particular programme. Students have contact details of the appropriate people to contact if they have any further questions

What is the advice for furloughed apprentices?

Apprentices on furlough can continue to engage with their programme via online learning and assessment. University staff are available to give support and guidance to ensure they can successfully complete outstanding work. Apprentices may also benefit from support from their workplace mentor at this time if possible. 

Are there any plans to apply a break in learning via DAS?

If an apprentice continues to engage with online material, there is no need to apply a break in learning.  However, if an apprentice cannot engage in any work based or university learning for 4 weeks or more, they must inform us to apply a study break according to ESFA regulations. We would hope that the majority, if not all, of our apprentices can continue to engage so their apprenticeships can be completed as planned.  If this is not possible however, we will work with you to review apprentice learning plans as necessary and get them back on programme asap.

What are the consequences for End Point Assessment and portfolio completion?

ESFA has extended the timescale within which an EPA must take place following gateway by an additional 12 weeks.  If an apprentice is able to engage with online learning but their work situation makes it difficult or impossible to complete work-based skills activities and portfolio development, we will work with you to ensure shortfalls are addressed before End Point Assessment.  In most cases this will be done next academic year but for students approaching EPA in the coming months, the date will be delayed allowing for extra support and time for students to prepare.  Where a student must unavoidably break their study, we will extend the completion date in liaison with the employer. It is very important for employers to note that where the learning period is extended, the duration of the apprenticeship may also need to increase.

How will this effect Off the Job Training?

Apprentices should log the time spent on online teaching and assessment in the usual way, even if they are no longer carrying out their job.  We will be as flexible and supportive as we can to ensure OJT requirements are in line with ESFA guidance before completion of their programme.

Where can I find out more information about apprenticeships and COVID-19

Click here for up to date information from the Institute for Apprenticeships.

Back to top