At the University of Kent, we offer a Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship that is tailored for working policy professionals who are near the start of their careers.

The primary role of a policy officer is to shape and/or influence government policy, by working with a wide range of stakeholders and experts to gather evidence, effectively synthesise information and present recommendations to colleagues. 

This apprenticeship is particularly suited to the following roles:

  • Policy Officer
  • Policy Manager
  • Policy Adviser / Advisor
  • Policy Analyst
  • Political Affairs Manager

Policy officers work within organisations that interact with and strive to influence government policy, such as:

  • Local authorities
  • National government
  • Public bodies
  • Statutory regulators
  • Private sector
  •  Non-profit, charity and voluntary sector

Benefits of the programme   

The Policy Officer apprenticeship helps employers to utilise their apprenticeship levy fund, secure their apprenticeship target and build a diverse and loyal workforce. It is structured to combine work and study, supporting employees to put theory into practice.  

Available across England, it includes high quality tuition from academics with internationally recognised experience and expertise. It is designed to ensure that apprentices rapidly acquire key skills that can be easily applied in the context of their organisation.  

As students at the University of Kent, apprentices benefit from the added value of a higher education experience which includes being part of a vibrant student and alumni community (both physical and online).  

A person sits at a keyboard with two screens

Read about Policy Officer Apprentice Kate Savenko's Research Project: 

How project management influences public policy 


Upon successful completion, the apprentice will have achieved a Certificate of Higher Education in Policy Making.  

Duration and commitment   

The apprentice can start in September or January. The duration of this apprenticeship is 24 months including the end-point assessment.  

The apprenticeship can be delivered entirely online or as a combination of online learning with in-person face-to-face teaching at three, day-long intensive sessions. We offer these intensive sessions in central London and at various locations in England, subject to demand.  

Entry requirements  

Since this apprenticeship exists to both diversify the workforce and up-skill aspiring policy professionals at all stages of their career, a broad range of entry routes can be considered. As a guide, the minimum prior qualifications needed to successfully complete the certificate are five GCSEs (including English and mathematics) at Grade C/4 or above, or an equivalent qualification. 

All apprentices must have the right to work in the UK to be eligible for the apprenticeship. 


  • Readiness for policy officer apprenticeship 
  • Who runs the UK? Power, politics, and policy 
  • Applied policy analysis 
  • Implementing policy 
  •  Making and communicating policy 
  • Project management for policy officers 
  • Critical thinking for policy analysis 
  • Applied research methods for evidence-based policy  

Fees and funding 

Apprentices receive a salary, have an employment contract, spend a minimum of 20% of their work time on off-the-job learning and pay no tuition fees. 

This qualification is eligible for levy funding in England, meaning the full cost can be met by employers’ levy fund. 

The cost of the Policy Officer apprenticeship is £6,000. This can be paid from the Apprenticeship Levy or by Government Co-investment. Other costs to consider that are not covered by the Levy of Co-investment include travel to the intensive teaching sessions (if applicable).    

Start Dates  

This programme starts in September each year. Please contact us for application cut-off dates.

Employers and Employees

Our team are there to offer support with developing apprenticeships in your organisation, be it upskilling existing employees or recruiting for new roles.

Contact us by emailing or by calling 01634 888467 (9:30am - 4pm Monday to Friday).

Students and Prospective Apprentices

Apprenticeships are available to those already employed in a relevant position and require the support of an employer to take part. If you are not already employed in a relevant role, please visit our please visit our Becoming an Apprentice page.

A job in policy has been challenging at times but it’s the type of job I have always wanted to have - you're always learning new things, working on a variety of tasks, and have lots of opportunities to work with colleagues and share ideas.”

Sally Mathias, Policy Officer

HE Certificate in Policy Studies - Subject to approval.  

Alumni Spotlight: Read more from Alumna Policy Officer Apprentice Sally Mathias

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