£14 million degree apprenticeships funding announced by Office for Students

The Office for Students (OfS) has today confirmed a second wave of investment of £14 million to increase the number of Level 6 degree apprenticeships in England.

This is the result of the second round of a competitive bidding process as part of the OfS’s £40 million degree apprenticeships fund, following the first wave announced in January 2024. It will provide support for 151 Level 6 degree apprenticeship programmes at 32 universities and colleges.

The funding will be used to:

  • expand provision at those providers already offering Level 6 degree apprenticeships
  • enable some providers to offer Level 6 degree apprenticeships for the first time
  • increase the number of students on Level 6 degree apprenticeships
  • increase equality of opportunity for students into and during Level 6 degree apprenticeships.

Projects or programmes of work that will receive funding include:

  • Weston College of Further and Higher Education / University Centre Weston has received £1,185,375 to promote and grow degree apprenticeships as a response to local employment needs in health, creative, digital and engineering sectors. Funding will be used to recruit specialist staff to ensure high quality programmes are developed and delivered in partnership with employers, accompanied by additional support to ensure students from underrepresented groups are engaged and supported to pursue degree apprenticeships.
  • The University of Derby has received £1,234,378 to develop its strategy of industrial engagement in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. This funding will support the delivery of new degree apprenticeships in health and social care, facilitate continuing engagement with potential apprentices and employers, and raise aspirations of those living in the region.
  • Reaseheath College has received £132,854 to enable it to provide degree apprenticeships for the first time, for two programmes: Food Industry Technical Professional, and Environmental Practitioner.
  • Sheffield Hallam University has received £770,032 for a business-facing project to drive recruitment to six existing degree apprenticeships and deliver the co-design, launch and recruitment to new Apprenticeship Standards in Registered Nurse and Geospatial Mapping and Science Specialist. The project includes proposals to improve information to applicants through regional partnerships, with an emphasis on widening participation and community outreach, and will leverage existing employer relationships, engage new organisations and benefit employers in the region. All employers will be given enhanced support to upskill their workforce and recruit new talent.

John Blake, Director for Fair Access and Participation at the OfS, said:

‘With this second round of bids, we were looking for universities and colleges to not only describe how OfS funding would expand their degree apprenticeships student numbers and course provision, but also to further demonstrate how they would prioritise recruiting and supporting students from all backgrounds to succeed. I’m pleased to say that all the successful bids have risen to this challenge.

‘We know that degree apprenticeships are so important as a route for students looking to engage in higher education in less traditional ways, and the benefits they bring to local and regional economies, which is why are investing up to £40 million over the next two academic years to increase the range and availability of these programmes. We have been inspired by the ambitious and forward-looking plans we have received, and I look forward to seeing how this funding can make a real difference to students and our future workforce over the next year and beyond.’


  1. The OfS received 66 bids from universities and colleges for this funding round. The OfS will provide a total of £14 million to fund projects at 32 universities and colleges. See the list of projects funded in wave 2.
  2. Read the guidance for higher education providers. A third and final wave of the degree apprenticeships funding competition will launch later in 2024.
  3. Read more about the competitive funding exercise for 2023-24 and 2024-25.
Published 21 March 2024

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