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General Apprenticeship Guidelines

Apprenticeship programs can range from two to five years in length and during that time the apprentice receives wages based on his/her skills. The wages of an apprentice increase as s/he acquires skills and gains competency in their particular trade.

Apprentices generally complete three levels of in-school training during this period of time. Level 1- Basic, Level 2- Intermediate, and Level 3- Advanced. This is considered the Certificate of Apprenticeship (C of A)

Upon completion of the apprenticeship program, the apprentice is required to write a government exam in order to receive a certificate of Qualification (C of Q). Once the apprentice receives a certificate, s/he is known as a journeyperson.

Ontario has Canada's largest apprenticeship system. There are more than 70,000 registered apprentices currently undergoing training in Ontario. About 90 per cent of apprenticeship training occurs in the workplace and is provided by employers or sponsors to standards of skill and safety set by industry. The remainder of training involves classroom instruction which is provided by a community college or an approved training provider, such as a union training centre.

Skilled workers are in high demand in many industries. Becoming an apprentice can be an important first step to learning new skills and building a rewarding career. About 120,000 apprentices are learning a trade today - nearly 60,000 more than in 2002-03. Annual apprenticeship registrations have grown from 17,100 in 2002-03 to more than 29,000 in 2010-11. We'll continue to increase the number of new registrations while providing support to help apprentices complete their training.

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