Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships can improve young people’s prospects of earning better wages and securing long-term employment

How to evaluate this policy

To help policy makers and programme managers improve evaluation and think practically about how they can get it embedded at programme design stage, we have provided a number of case studies across our policy areas. Below we give four examples where an apprenticeship policy intervention has been evaluated for its impact on local economic growth. (Read about our approach to this policy here).

Each evaluation case study has met our minimum standard of evidence, which means it (at least) compares what changed for the individuals that benefited from an intervention with what changed over the same time frame for otherwise comparable individuals that didn’t benefit, or that received a different type of intervention.

The case studies below use two different approaches to achieving this comparison. One study uses a randomised control trial (RCT), the gold standard of evaluation, and the others use statistical approaches to try to ‘strip out’ the impact of the other factors that could have affected outcomes in both the beneficiary group and the comparator group.

Evaluation need not be a very technical exercise and it can be helpful to borrow from the approaches adopted in existing studies. Read more about how to evaluate, and why we think it can be helpful to plagiarise in our How to Evaluate series. You can also read up on a number of different evaluation methods in our scoring guide to help you both judge other evaluations, and make a decision about which method to use.

Case studies 

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Subsidised training for disadvantaged youth in Columbia (RCT)

This study investigates the effects of a large subsidised training programme for disadvantaged youth in Colombia, introduced between 2002 and 2005. Read more.

Employment policy reform in Italy (statistical approach)

This study examines the effects of a package of employment policy reforms introduced in Italy in 2003. Read more.

Apprenticeship Bonus in Germany (statistical approach)

This study evaluates the Apprenticeship Bonus, a subsidy to employers for hiring additional apprentices introduced by the German Federal Parliament in July 2008. Read more.

Training disadvantaged youth in Germany (statistical approach)

This study evaluates a pilot project to support firms in training disadvantaged youth, who would not otherwise have been hired as apprentices. Read more.

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