Apprenticeships Research Unit

Coordinating Degree Apprenticeship research activity across the University and beyond

The Apprenticeships Research Unit (ARU) aims to become a leading research unit in the field of apprenticeships research, with a specific emphasis on higher, degree and masters level apprenticeships.

As one of the largest providers of Degree Apprenticeships, Manchester Metropolitan University is an ideal location for pioneering research on this higher-level training pathway.

Building on existing relationships with employers and students, we will produce high-quality academic research outputs, which will also help to inform policy and practice.

Our research

The ARU is an interdisciplinary team of researchers led by Dr Raheel Nawaz and Dr Katy Jones, and our research focuses on three key areas:

If you’d like to work with us or require further information on our research please get in touch:

Current projects

Working Life After Degree Apprenticeship

This is a qualitative, longitudinal study that will provide some of the first insights into the experience of individuals completing degree apprenticeship programmes, and reflections from employers on the impact of the programme to date. Contact Katy Jones for more details at

Understanding the participation of degree apprentices and undergraduate students

This is a quantitative study that compares the characteristics of a large sample degree apprentices with undergraduate students enrolling on similar courses. It seeks to uncover key differences and similarities between those enrolling on degree apprenticeship and traditional undergraduate courses. Contact Qi Cao for more details at

Augmented Reality (AR) for Degree Apprentices

This study examines the impact of new teaching and learning resources on a first year cohort of 26 Laboratory Scientist Degree Apprentices. Specifically, the study will explore how AR can influence apprentice engagement, accessibility and attainment, and how they specifically use technology. The project will also extract both qualitative and quantitative data over an academic year observing at their initial perception, utilisation, understanding and reflection of AR’s impact on their studies, and potentially their attainment. Contact Tim Gabriel for more details at