Data correct as at 2020/21

Next update due: March 2023

This report describes the number of adult social care apprenticeships which were started and achieved during the 2020/21 academic year (August 2020 to July 2021). This period covers the COVID-19 pandemic and makes comparisons to previous years.

The report covers factors such as apprenticeship level, demographics, regional make-up, trend analysis and comparisons to other frameworks to provide context. It should be of interest to workforce planners, learning providers, social care employers, government bodies, policy makers and anyone with an interest in social care apprenticeships. 

Downloading the visualisation and notes about the data

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  • For information about how workforce estimates are created or rounding and suppression rules please visit our webpage on methodology.
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Key findings

Apprenticeship starts

  • There were around 33,900 adult social care apprenticeships starts in 2020/21, which was 13% higher than in 2019/20. Across all apprenticeships, there was very little change over this period (-0.3%).

  • COVID-19 was one factor influencing a decrease in adult social care starts, with evidence of a drop-off in starts during April and May 2020 (see Chart 6). Another factor could be due to people waiting for the launch of the new level 4 and level 5 standards and therefore not starting the, older, level 5 framework. See Section 2.1 for further analysis.

  • Lead Adult Care Worker apprenticeship standards received around 14,220 starts, Adult Care Worker received 12,830 starts, Leader in Adult Care received 3,780 starts and Lead Practitioner in Adult Care received 1,890.

  • There were around 810 starts in the Social Worker degree apprenticeship in 2020/21, which makes up 11% of all degree level apprenticeship starts across Health and Social Care.

  • The standards Lead Adult Care Worker and Adult Care Worker ranked 3rd and 4th in terms of intermediate/advanced level starts in 2020/21 out of all apprenticeships. 


Apprenticeship achievements

  • Around 14,100 adult social care apprenticeships were achieved in 2020/21.

  • Over two thirds of these achievements were from the standards Adult Care Worker and Lead Adult Care Worker, with the remainder being from the now closed frameworks Health and Social Care and Care Leadership and Management.


Demographic trends between 2015/16 and 2020/21

  • The proportion of adult social care apprenticeship starts aged under 25 has decreased from 28% to 21%.

  • The proportion of adult social care apprenticeship starts that identified as male has not changed from 16% in 2015/16.The proportion of adult social care apprenticeship starts that identified as having learning difficulties or disabilities has increased from 11% to 14%.