Laboratory and Science Technicians Apprenticeship: Employer Guide

Why take on a Laboratory and Science Technicians Apprentice?

The contribution that good laboratory and science technicians could make to science companies operating in the United Kingdom is being hampered by the scarcity of people with the necessary practical and theoretical skills to be effective. Over the years employers have developed an increasing reliance on university graduates to fill these technician roles; this has been recognised as being neither cost effective nor sustainable. This framework has been written as a shared framework between Semta who look after science, engineering and manufacturing and Cogent who cover chemicals, pharmaceuticals, nuclear, oil, gas, petroleum and polymer industries. It builds on Cogent and Semta’s previous joint framework for laboratory technicians and has been written in response to significant interest by employers in the use of non-graduate technicians in these support roles.

The Apprenticeship Framework

There are three main strands to an Apprenticeship, known as the Framework: a competence-based element, a technical element and a skills element. At every level the apprentice will study maths, English and ICT.

Apprenticeship Laboratory and Science Technicians:

Apprentices will work towards their Level 2 NVQ in Laboratory and Associated Technical Activities and the BTEC Level 2 Diploma in Applied Science. Modules cover:

  • Health and safety
  • Effective working relationships
  • Dealing with laboratory specimens/samples
  • Communicating information

Advanced Apprenticeship Laboratory and Science Technicians:

The apprentice will achieve their Level 3 NVQ in Laboratory and Associated Technical Activities and BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Applied Science. Modules include:

  • How to carry out scientific or technical testing operations
  • Accessing and communicating scientific or technical information to authorised personnel
  • Providing technical advice and guidance for scientific or technical activities

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