Where will this course lead?

The primary role of a Network Engineer is to design, install, maintain and support communication networks within an organisation, or between organisations. Network engineers need to maintain high levels of operation for communication networks, in order to provide maximum performance and availability for their users, such as staff, clients, customers and suppliers. They will understand network configuration, cloud, network administration and monitoring tools, as well as be able to give technical advice and guidance.

The apprenticeship standard for Network Engineers was designed by the industry for apprentices employed in a wide variety of different organisations and in public, private and voluntary sectors. Employers likely to use the new standard include:

· Large businesses that operate Secure Operations Centres (SOC), Network Operations Centres (NOC), or cyber incident response services for internal or external clients; each of which may take on hundreds of apprentices a year, where the apprenticeship pathway is a mainstay for recruitment.

· Small and medium-sized specialist cyber security service businesses that operate Secure Operations Centres (SOC), Network Operations Centres (NOC), cyber incident response services, or related specialist services for internal or external clients, which may employ apprentices as core staff to provide the skills for growth.

The actual job role of the apprentice will vary significantly from one employer to the next - Examples include:

· Network Technician

· Network Engineer

· Systems Engineer

· Network Administrator

Apprenticeships are a key entry point for the significant career opportunities that the digital industry sector can provide. The Register of IT Technicians, managed by BCS, provides independent recognition that completing an apprenticeship is the beginning of a career in the IT profession. People

completing this apprenticeship will be eligible to apply for a place on the independent Register of IT Technicians, providing recognition of their competence in applying technical skills in a business environment, whilst signing up to a professional code of conduct and behaviours.

A place on the Register acknowledges that those achieving these standards have joined the professional community and opens the door to the continued support, career development and guidance that professional bodies provide.

What will I study?

· Network Principles

· Network Systems and Architecture

· Network Security

In addition, apprentices will learn underpinning knowledge skills, and behaviours, including topics such as: logical and creative thinking skills; analytical and problem solving skills; working independently and taking responsibility; teamwork; communication; maintaining a productive, professional and secure working environment.

How will this course be delivered?

These courses are delivered through classroom teaching, practical workshops and online study materials.

You will also be allocated an assessor coach who will visit you in the workplace, to support the development of your vocational skills and End Point Assessment (EPA) portfolio.

What qualifications will I get?

· Level 4 Network Engineer Apprenticeship Standard

· Internationally recognised vendor or professional qualification(s)

How will I be assessed?

On-Programme Assessment

Technical knowledge and understanding is assessed on-programme through knowledge modules and these must be passed before the End Point Assessment (EPA) can take place.

End Point Assessment

The final, End Point Assessment (EPA) is completed in the last few months of the apprenticeship and it is based on:

· A portfolio - produced towards the end of the apprenticeship, containing evidence from real work projects that have been completed during the

apprenticeship, usually towards the end and when collected together, cover the totality of the standard. The portfolio is assessed as part of the End Point Assessment (EPA).

· A project - giving the apprentice the opportunity to undertake a business-related project over a one-week period away from the day-to-day workplace.

· An employer reference

· A structured interview with an independent assessor - exploring what has been produced in the portfolio and the project, as well as looking at how it has been produced. The independent assessor will assess each element of the End Point Assessment (EPA) and will then decide whether to award successful apprentices with a pass, or distinction.

How do I get a place on the course?

In order to gain a place on this course, applicants must meet the entry criteria and attend a formal interview. All applications are to be submitted via the college website:


If you have a learning difficulty or disability, please let us know when you apply. If you need help with completing your application and at interview, we can provide support:


What are the entry requirements?

You must be employed in a relevant field (as indicated above) for a minimum of 30 hours per week.

You typically need a minimum of 5 GCSEs at Grade 9/A* to 4/C, including Maths, English Language and ICT; alternatively, you should possess equivalent Level 2 qualifications, at Merit or Distinction Level.

1 A Level, or 2 AS Levels (40 UCAS points), or an equivalent qualification in a relevant subject, such as an IT Infrastructure Technician Apprenticeship, Level 3 BTEC Diploma.

Individual employers will set the selection criteria, but this is likely to include the above or other relevant qualifications and experience and/or an aptitude test, with a focus upon Level 2 Maths.

Employers are welcome to engage with our Full-Time Learners already studying computing qualifications, if they need assistance in recruiting Apprentices.

What else do I need to know?

Please contact the Employer Services Team for more information regarding funding and costs: apprenticeships@solihull.ac.uk

What can I do after this course?

Upon completion of the apprenticeship, you can:

· Continue your employment in the industry


· Progress onto a degree course or higher level qualifications through the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), to become a Team Leader or Operations Manager.



Start Date






Course Fee


Course Code


Study Mode

Part Time

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Predicted Employment

How much can I earn?


Employment by Region

The career paths provided are to give you an idea of the careers that you could progress onto in the future. However, for some, you may need to complete higher level qualifications and gain experience before your dream job becomes a reality. The information provided is to support further research and to generate some initial career ideas when choosing a course. Please check entry requirements to degree courses, apprenticeships, and jobs as this may vary from year to year and across providers. For further advice and guidance, please contact: careers@solihull.ac.uk.
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