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Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship

Apply engineering principles to software development.

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Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship

The Open University in Wales’ Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship programme equips apprentices with the knowledge, skills and behavioural characteristics required to be a competent software engineering professional. The programme provides a broad foundation in the fundamental technologies and techniques of computing and the issues involved in their application as well as providing the tools that enable apprentices to consistently keep ahead and stay agile in a rapidly changing subject area.

The Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship is a work-based higher education programme that integrates academic and work-based learning in a way that can be delivered flexibly around the demands of your workplace. Apprentices will therefore gain practical experience and theoretical knowledge in designing, building and evaluating software components and systems.

The apprenticeship is fully funded by the Welsh Government through the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales.

The Open University in Wales offers Degree Apprenticeship in software development to all employers in Wales.

Apply today


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Why choose The Open University in Wales’ Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship?

  • Delivered flexibly around the demands of your organisation. Our tutor-supported, rich-media online learning methods mean only minimal time away from the workplace is required.
  • Learning can be delivered simultaneously to various locations using our tried-and-trusted educational technology, providing a consistent programme at scale for multiple staff.
  • We have over 50 years’ experience in providing knowledge and skills to busy working adults. 65% of Open University in Wales' students in Wales are in employment, and we have designed our apprenticeships to ensure work-based learning is at the heart of our programmes.

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The apprenticeship is suitable for employees who work in digital and technology roles and who spend the majority of their working hours in Wales.

It's open to existing employees for career progression and skills development, as well as for hiring new talent and growing your team. Ideal for employers looking to fill skills gaps.

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Stage 1

Stage 2

Stage 3

Stage 4


Introduction to computing and IT 2

Managing IT: the why, the what and the how

Web technologies

Web, mobile and cloud technologies

BSc (Hons) Applied Software Engineering awarded.

Apprenticeship programme completed.

Introduction to computing technologies

Object-oriented Java programming

Software engineering

Interaction design and the user experience

Career development and employability

Change, strategy and projects at work

Work-based learning 3

Final project

   Theory modules
   Practice modules


The apprenticeship is made up of four components:​

Initial assessment Study modules Work-based learning modules BSc (Honours) Applied Software Engineering

Undertaken by the Apprenticeship Programme Delivery Manager (APDM).

Reviews the apprentice's current level of knowledge, work experience and job competencies as well as previous qualifications and English and maths essential skills.

Used to tailor individual learning plans to help apprentices make the most of the apprenticeship.

The APDM and the Business Relationship Manager (BRM) also run an Information Advice and Guidance session with the apprentices and their line managers.

Build an understanding of the key theories, skills and competencies in taking the apprentice’s digital skills to a higher level.

Academic Tutors facilitate study, support learning, provide feedback and mark module assessments.

Guide apprentices in applying and evidencing their academic knowledge to their working practices.

Often involves apprentices reflecting on their role and learning within the workplace.

The Practice Tutor helps the apprentice to synergise and integrate their work-based and academic learning.

Awarded by The Open University in Wales when the apprentice has successfully completed the programme.

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The Open University has the experience and support in place to help apprentices succeed and make a positive impact on practice.

In addition to designated account management support, the Open University in Wales will deploy expert staff to support your organisation and your apprentices. They will work collaboratively with the relevant roles in your organisation:

Practice Tutor (PT)

The PT is a key role and provides individual support to apprentices to progress and complete all the requirements of the apprenticeship or professional programme they have enrolled in. The support is tailored to the context of each learner’s professional duties and their workplace environment. Regular engagement with each learner’s line manager or work-based supervisor is a critical component of this role. In addition, the PT coaches the apprentice to integrate their academic learning with their professional work, guide them in the development of their portfolio and prepares them for their end-point assessment.

There are further roles and teams that support both apprentices and employers, and that work very closely with the PTs.

Academic Tutors

The role of the Academic Tutor is to support success by using, interpreting and building on the teaching resources produced by the OU and provided to apprentices. They monitor progression, mark assignments, provide personalised feedback and work in partnership to support the apprentices’ academic, personal and professional development. In addition, Academic Tutors provide pastoral support to apprentices. They are sometimes also referred to as Associate Lecturers or Module Tutors.

Apprenticeship Enrolment and Support Team (AEST)

The AEST supports apprentices throughout their Apprenticeship journey. This team of friendly Senior Advisors can offer advice and support for a range of queries apprentices may have whilst studying their modules, whether that be for advice on an upcoming assignment or exam, navigation around the OU online learning platforms or when they are experiencing difficult circumstances that are having an impact on their studies. This support team is able to reach out to a wide range of relevant teams within the University to help apprentices get back on track again.

Apprenticeship Programme Delivery Managers (APDM)

This role supports employers to recruit and onboard applicants on to the chosen apprenticeship programme. APDMs provide information, advice and guidance and carry out an initial assessment to ensure the apprenticeship is the right one at the right level for the individual. APDMs provide quarterly management information reports to employers detailing learners progress and put interventions in place where an apprentice is in need of support. Employers will have a named APDM to be the primary contact for apprenticeship delivery throughout the programme.

Line Manager

This is a person in the workplace who supports the choice of apprenticeship programme for their employee or applicant and is involved in the onboarding process with their applicant. Line managers facilitate in the apprentice to take off-the-job planned training time and they fully engage in 12 weekly progress review meetings with the Practice Tutor and apprentice. Line managers have regular one to one meetings with their apprentices to integrate the apprenticeship into performance and development. They are key to enabling a successful work-based project and completion of the apprentice’s end-point assessment.

Team in a meeting


Develop the relevant skills for your organisation, improve productivity and achieve higher staff morale.

Manager speaking to employees


Earn while you learn and develop the skills you need to gain access to sectors you want to work in.

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An apprenticeship requires a part of an apprentice’s working time to be protected for off-the-job training, to allow the apprentice to engage in the learning. The Open University’s tutor-supported online learning gives the employer and the apprentice the flexibility to pick the most suitable times around organisational and personal needs – minimising the impact on day-to-day productivity.

At present the face-to-face days on the programme are being delivered via online meeting rooms. It is a compulsory requirement for learners to attend these days. The Open University is currently reviewing the safe delivery of on-campus face-to-face days and the programme team will be guided by the university and the Statutory Health Profession Regulators in reviewing online and on-campus delivery. Employers and learners will be advised in advance of any changes to the delivery pattern.

Online delivery is both varied and interactive, using rich media formats that engage and enthuse apprentices on their journey. Learning can be accessed 24/7 on computers, tablets and mobile devices. Online forums and tutorials as well as email and telephone communication are used to support apprentices throughout the programme.

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Education & Skills Funding Agency European Union - European Social Fund Apprenticeships

English | Cymraeg

Programme Summary

Location: Wales


  • 4 - 4.5 years


  • Apprenticeship Level 6

Specific entry requirements

  • No

Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

Qualifications achieved at the end of the programme

  • BSc (Hons) Applied Software Engineering

Additional information

Contact us

Disability support

Further information

For a more detailed look at our Applied Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship, download our brochure.

Download brochure

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