An alternative to traditional style of qualifications, apprenticeships are paid jobs with hands-on experience and off-the-job training. They come at different levels, from level 2 (equivalent to GCSE), level 3 (equivalent to A-level), all the way to level 6 (university degree) and cover many areas of work from bricklaying and hairdressing through business administration and IT support to civil engineering, midwifery and many more in between.