Innovate and test the boundaries of knowledge

Science and research and development (R&D) are not only critical to furthering our understanding of the world around us, but to develop tools and techniques that reduce hazards, improve processes and overcome challenges. Being able to more precisely measure meteorological patterns helps us to know exactly when to batten down the hatches as a storm approaches, and developments in laboratory science have radically improved criminal investigative techniques. The food we eat is safer, the drugs we take to combat illness more effective—the list of improvements made thanks to science and R&D is endless.

The apprenticeships listed in this sector are largely applicable across industries where high-tech knowhow and skills are necessary, including pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, chemicals, healthcare, energy and many more. Roles can be laboratory-based, but also on manufacturing floors and in plants, and range from junior technicians to leading engineers and chief scientists.

As a laboratory scientist, you may carry out a range of technical and scientific activities in your specialist discipline. A senior metrology technician, meanwhile, will develop and monitor measurement capability and capacity, working toward gaining responsibility for the planning, quality, accuracy, timely delivery and evaluation of metrology activities within your area of responsibility. Scientific work also extends to data, with the bioinformatics scientist apprenticeship able to prepare you to use computational, data analytical and data mining techniques that are applied to a range of problems in the life sciences, such as the process of drug discovery and development

The Apprenticeship Guide sector head