Putting together a proposal for an apprenticeship standard can be hard work.  You need to thoroughly consider the occupation, checking that it is unique and that you are able to explain it in full.  You must collaborate with others so that you are also sure that it applies across different types of employer. An employer chair must be nominated by the group to submit the proposal on their behalf. A proposal for an apprenticeship standard includes:

Proposals are submitted to the Institute for Apprenticeships who will let you know if it has been approved or not.  This usually takes about six weeks.  Submitted proposals can be downloaded from the pop up against each standard in the standards directory. There you can check what the occupation covers and who has been involved so far.

Tips on proposal writing:

  • Write your proposal with a non-healthcare audience in mind.
  • Avoid jargon and abbreviations.
  • Consider swapping complex healthcare terms for simple everyday ones.
  • Check what else is being developed or is available – you will have to explain how your standard relates to others.
  • Remember to engage with a wide range of employers, both public and private sector, from both large and small organisations and across England, not just your own region.
  • Avoid including course curriculum or professional standards verbatim. The knowledge, skills and behaviours that you list need to link directly to the duties you have identified.
  • All proposals are submitted to the IFA via an online form. Access the apprenticeship builder here.


Once a proposal is approved the Trailblazer group begins work on drafting the standard.