Social care apprenticeships explained

Here at CASCAID we are committed to continuously provide careers guidance to help support young people in identifying their future, education, training and career goals. To support our continued mission to ensure access to high-quality career guidance resources, CASCAID works with Skills for Care, a highly valued social care workforce…

If you’re looking to start a career in social care, then an apprenticeship is a great place to start.

What does it mean to work in social care?

Social care is all about supporting people to live their lives and promote their independence. You’ll make a positive difference to people’s lives and this is often what people enjoy the most about it.

There are lots of different jobs depending on what you want to do, who you want to work with and where you want to work.

You could work with people who have a physical, sensory or learning disability, autism, dementia, a mental health condition or are recovering from an accident. And this could be working in a care home, out in your local community, or in someone’s home.

What is an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships combine practical training in a job with study. As an apprentice, you’ll work alongside experienced staff, gain job-specific skills, do a nationally recognised qualification – all whilst earning a wage and getting holiday pay.

Most entry-level apprenticeships last around 12 months, and there are opportunities to progress to management level.

What is the Adult Care Worker apprenticeship?

This is the name of the apprenticeship standard for an entry-level apprenticeship in adult social care. There are lots of different job roles covered by this apprenticeship such as care assistant, care worker and support worker.

As an adult care worker apprentice, you’ll spend at least 20% of your time away from your day-to-day role doing training – this gives you plenty of time to develop your skills and knowledge.

The rest of the time, you’ll be working in a social care service. Your colleagues, mentors and manager will help you learn and practice your new skills in the workplace.

What else will I do to complete an Adult Care Worker apprenticeship?

As part of the apprenticeship, you’ll receive a thorough induction including achieving the 15 Standards as set out in the Care Certificate.

You’ll be supported to achieve a Level 2 Diploma in Care and qualifications in literacy and numeracy if you don’t already have them.

Towards the end of your apprenticeship, you’ll do a self-assessment to see how far you’ve come and gather testimonials about how you’ve supported people.

What is the end-point assessment?

At the end of the apprenticeship, you’ll complete an end-point assessment to show that you can apply the knowledge, skills and behaviours you’ve learnt throughout your time as an Adult Care Worker apprentice.

The end-point assessment is made up of a situational judgement test (a multiple-choice test of your judgement in typical care situations) and a professional discussion (which gives you the chance to explain what you’ve learnt and how you’ve developed).

You’ll be supported throughout your apprenticeship to ensure that you’re ready for the end-point assessment when the time comes. The end-point assessment will be graded and you’ll be awarded your apprenticeship grade and certificate.

What happens after I complete my Adult Care Worker apprenticeship?

Completing an apprenticeship is the start of your career.  The adult care sector has lots of varied roles and opportunities to develop further and progress your career.

Many employers will be keen for you to stay on with them after you’ve completed your apprenticeship – you’ll have gained lots of skills during your apprenticeship that they’re looking for. If it isn’t possible to stay with your employer, see what other jobs are available that interest you.

Read more about apprenticeships, meet our apprentices and view current apprenticeship vacancies here.

This content is sponsored by Skills for Care. For more information on social care apprenticeships visit Skills for Care.