The apprenticeship and academic qualification run alongside each other throughout the 2 year duration of the course.
As an apprentice you will be provided with 20% off-the-job, this equates to you being released from the workplace one day per week. On the one day a week you are released from work you are required to attend Barnsley College. At Barnsley College you will study to gain a 120 credit Level 3 Diploma in Applied Science (equivalent to 2 A-levels) over the two years. You will study units such as; the fundamentals of science, scientific practical techniques, mathematics and statistics, genetics and genetic engineering, plus many more. You will be taught by industry experienced science tutors. At the end of the programme you will be awarded a Diploma in Applied Science at grade pass, merit or distinction.
Alongside the academic course, you will be assigned your own assessor with an appropriate scientific background. The assessor will work closely with you and your employer. You will work towards the apprenticeship standards, which must be evidenced to be met at the end of the programme. You will be regularly visited in the workplace, where your assessor will confirm your competency in required areas which are; your skills, knowledge and behaviours in the workplace. Your professional development and conduct will be closely monitored against the standards set out by the Science Industry Partnership. At the end of the programme, your assessor, a registered assessor and your employer will decide whether you are competent in each of the standards set out in the apprenticeship framework, at this point you will be entered for the end point assessment. The end point assessment includes a two day visit where an external specialist in the area in which you work, from the Science Industry Assessment Service, will judge your competency as a level 3 laboratory technician. During the two days, you will sit a synoptic assessment test (SAT), a vocational competency discussion and a graded scenario case study. This is a rigorous assessment process and you will be informed of whether you have passed the apprenticeship in its entirety at this point.
This apprenticeship programme is customised to the requirements of you and your employer. You will gain a highly regarded qualification which will allow you to register with RSci-Tech (the register of science technicians).