Foundation Apprenticeships

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Guidance for apprentice employers during the outbreak of COVID-19

If you support Foundation Apprentices and have any questions, please contact your learning provider e.g. college.

You can also read our COVID-19 FAQs for regular updates.

Find your future employees early

Get involved with Foundation Apprenticeships and you’ll get early access to future talent, by providing school pupils with real experience of the world of work. Helping them achieve an industry recognised qualification and helping you develop your talent pipeline.

  • Get early access to future talent 

  • No direct costs to you as an employer

  • Fast track talent development in your business 

  • Grow your business with the skills you need 

  • Develop your staff as coaches and mentors 

How does it actually work?

Select the milestones below to find out more about what's involved.

February-May is your chance to meet with potential FA candidates at our networking events. You can also arrange interviews for your organisation with your Learning Provider.

Meet Learning Providers

You work with the Learning Provider to create a plan for how you will work with the apprentice. Once this is done you can arrange an induction, just like you would for your other employees. 

Workplace planning

In September you're ready to welcome your FA. They will usually work with you 2 half-days or 1 full day per week. Whatever best suits your needs and their other subjects. 

Placement begins

There isn't an exam so students are assessed throughout the year. You'll meet with the Learning Provider to advise on the type of work the FA has been doing and how it matches the assessment framework.

Plan the assessment

The FA uses the work they have been doing as the evidence for their assessment. You might arrange a time for the assessor to visit the FA onsite and observe them at work. 

Evaluation phase

The FA completes their placement with you in April. They might have exams at this point. You choose what's next. You might want to talk to them about moving to a Modern Apprenticeship, or you may want to start thinking about next years FAs.


Our short video explains how Foundation Apprenticeships work and how you can get involved.

Available sectors

Frameworks for Foundation Apprenticeships have been developed for 12 of Scotland’s growth industries



Pupils learn how your business keeps track of your money, manages tax and grows profits.


Business Skills

Pupils learn what makes your company successful. They learn about managing people, projects and strategy.


Civil Engineering

As you build our future environment you give pupils an introduction to site surveying, CAD and health and safety for the construction industry.


Creative and Digital Media

Pupils discover how to communicate creatively across digital and social media channels on marketing campaigns.



Pupils work with you to find new and better ways to do things. Learning to interpret engineering data and develop problem solving skills.


Financial Services

From compliance and regulatory frameworks to building positive customer relationships, pupils will learn how to work within a financial services environment.


Food and Drink Technologies

It might be a focus on new product development or improving food safety. Pupils work to understand the scientific and creative thinking in food technology.


Hardware and System Support

Supporting the future of tech support. Pupils work with you to learn systems, hardware and telecoms operational support.


Scientific Technologies

Our biggest advancements start out in a lab. Pupils learn your health and safety procedures within a lab, how to prepare compounds and carry out tests.


Social Services Children and Young People

Pupils learn how to support the safeguarding of children, effective communication and how to make sure every child gets the best start in life.


Social Services and Healthcare

Pupils learn how to support the safeguarding of individuals, effective communication and develop an understanding of social services practice.


Software Development

Gaming, virtual reality, cyber security - the digital world is changing fast. Pupils work with you to understand development, customer requirements, data modelling.

Get involved today

It's easy for your business to get involved. Tell us about you, and we'll do the rest.

The details you give us will help us to set you up with the best Foundation Apprenticeship for your business. We'll pass these on to learning providers in your area, so they can get back to you with more information about how to get involved.

Foundation Apprenticeships Levels 4 and 5

Find out more about our pilot for Foundation Apprenticeships at Level 4 and 5 which are available to school pupils in S3 to S6. 

Find out more

You're in good company

From sole-traders to global enterprise many of Scotland's top companies are already seeing the benefits of Foundation Apprenticeships

Still got questions?

Read our FAQs

Want to chat about your options?

Call our employer helpline

0800 783 6000

Skills Development Scotland is delivering Foundation Apprenticeships with support from European Social Fund.

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