What is an Australian Apprenticeship?


What is an Apprenticeship?

Australian Apprenticeships combine training and employment, which will allow you to work towards a nationally recognised qualification. Apprenticeships are between two and four years duration, available full-time or part-time and even while you’re still attending school (depending on the industry).

While apprenticeships are typically thought to be a youth-oriented enterprise, there is no upper age limit and mature-aged people are encouraged to apply.

What is a Traineeship?

Traineeships in Western Australia vary in duration from 6-months to 48-months full time. Traineeships can also be undertaken on a part-time basis with a minimum requirement of 15-hours per week paid employment (different arrangements apply for school-based traineeships and some special projects). Generally, an existing worker can only take up a traineeship after the first 3-months of their full-time employment, or first 12-months of their part-time or casual employment. Different arrangements apply to some existing workers.

School Based Traineeships

School-based apprenticeships and traineeships provide the opportunity for senior secondary students to start training whilst also completing the Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE). Under these arrangements the student is both a full-time student and a part-time employee, with the same employment and training responsibilities as other Australian Apprentices or trainees. Students are paid a wage for the hours they work.

Students will usually attend school 4-days per week and spend one day in the workplace. Extra hours of work can be completed during school holidays with the agreement of the employer. Many Registered Training Organisations provide flexible training that is delivered in the workplace to minimise disruption at school.

Am I eligible for an Apprenticeship or Traineeship?


Australian Apprenticeships are open to a broad range of people from diverse backgrounds, but there are some requirements that you should check before applying, including the following criteria.

  • Australian Citizenship, Permanent Residency, New Zealand citizen, or holder of an appropriate visa
  • You are of school leaving age or at least 15-years old with written approval from the Department of Education and Training to take up an Australian Apprenticeship
  • Employers are not eligible to take up an apprenticeship in their own business


The following criteria apply to take up a traineeship:

  • Australian Citizenship, Permanent Residency, New Zealand citizen, or holder of an appropriate visa
  • Minimum employment of 15-20 hours a week (based on qualification eligibility criteria)
  • You are of school leaving age or at least 15-years old with written approval from the Department of Education and Training to take up a Traineeship

School Based 

In order to be a School Based Trainee or Apprentice a student must:

  • Be a full-time senior secondary school student in years 10, 11 or 12
  • Enter into a Training Contract with an employer
  • Have an agreement with your school to undertake school-based training
  • Have the competencies achieved in the apprenticeship or traineeship included in the Western Australian certificate of Education (WACE)
How do I start an Apprenticeship or Traineeship?

AMAATS can get you started on an apprenticeship pathway quickly and easily, providing support and guidance along the way.

Ready to start your apprenticeship journey?

Head over to Career Services page.

Where does AMAATS fit in?

As an apprenticeship and traineeship provider for the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN), AMAATS is contracted by the Australian Government the Department of Education and Training to deliver free support services for Australian Apprenticeships.

Our role is to provide timely and comprehensive information and support to apprentices, trainees and employers throughout the term of an apprenticeship or traineeship. This can include information regarding skills and occupations that may be in demand, acting as a mediator between you and an employer (regarding training contracts and employment contracts) and managing government payments (such as Trade Support Loans, Support for Adult Australian Apprentices and the Living Away From Home Allowance).

Log your details and let us help you start your new career pathway.