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What Are College Apprenticeships?

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  • Written By: G. Wiesen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 19 August 2014
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College apprenticeships are typically programs that combine a college education, involving classroom attendance, and apprenticeship training, which occurs in the workplace. Different types of education work well for different types of careers, and this type of education seeks to combine the strengths of both a college education and an apprenticeship. Students typically attend classes for part of a day or part of a semester. The rest of the time is spent applying their knowledge and learning by actually doing the job they are learning about.

College apprenticeships typically utilize aspects of both a traditional college education and an apprenticeship into a single program. A college education usually takes place in classrooms and similar environments, where students learn about various subjects through lecture, reading, and class discussion. Students also complete homework assignments and other projects that help them explore different aspects of a lesson or subject being discussed in the classroom.

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An apprenticeship, on the other hand, usually does not involve learning in a classroom, but instead allows students to learn while doing what they are learning. This approach is often utilized in trades that are more tactile and physical in nature, such as construction or manufacturing jobs. College apprenticeships utilize aspects of both types of educational approach to create a single program that allows students to learn in classrooms and receive on-the-job training. These sorts of college apprenticeships are often used for subjects such as electronics, in which students learn concepts in a classroom, then apply those concepts to real world situations through an apprenticeship.

There are different ways in which college apprenticeships can be utilized. Some programs allow students to attend classes for a few hours each day, usually in the morning, then after a short break the students will move out of the classrooms and spend the second half of each day working in an apprenticeship. This often works well, as it allows students to immediately apply what they have learned in their morning classes to the afternoon workplace. There are also college apprenticeships in which students attend classes for the first few months of a semester and then work in a professional apprenticeship during the second half.

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