Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship

Course overview

  • Course level
    Undergraduate, Degree Apprenticeship
  • Course type
    Part-time, Work-based degree
  • Duration
    3 to 4 years or 18-month top up course
  • School

Entry requirements

  • A levels
    Three A Levels (or equivalent)
  • Further requirements
    At least Grade 4 or C GCSE Maths and English
  • Employment
    You'll need to be in a full time paid role that is relevant to the apprenticeship. This could be an existing job role you are in or a new degree apprenticeship position you are applying for.
More information
Download course brochure

Key Dates

  • Programme start dates
    September, January and April
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Katie - Microsoft | Yours For The Taking

Katie is a Chartered Manager Degree Apprentice working at Microsoft UK, this is her story.

Get your fees paid and leave university without debt

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Course summary

Discover a new route to a management career. Gain real business experience learning on the job while studying towards a degree in Leadership and Business Management debt-free. You'll work with one of Aston's partner apprenticeship providers like Capgemini, Mondelez and Kaplan. We'll teach you the theory and key skills and you'll put them straight into practice with your employer. 

Key information and entry requirements


By successfully completing this programme, you'll be awarded a BSc in Leadership and Business Management plus eligibility to apply for Chartered Status from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). You will also achieve an apprenticeship certificate that is graded at pass, merit or distinction. 

Duration of programme

The duration of the course can range from three to four years, depending on your employer and level of work experience. Learners who have completed the Level 5 Operations / Departmental Manager Apprenticeship can be fast-tracked onto an 18-month top-up programme.

Start dates

There are three entry points: September, January and April.

Tuition fees

You will not have to pay tuition fees as a degree apprenticeships, as the costs are met by the UK government and your employer*. In addition to your fees being paid, you will also earn a salary while you study, so there is no need to apply for Student Finance.

The funding band for this degree apprenticeship is £22,000. This is the full cost of your apprenticeship which will be paid for using your employer's apprenticeship levy.

*Employers may require students to pay the fees for resits.

Entry requirements

You will need to apply for a degree apprenticeship role or already be employed in a job in England with responsibilities aligned with the degree content. Please see the how to apply section below for more information.

Entry requirements are set by the hiring business and not Aston University so they vary between organisations. Apprentices are selected based on their applications, an interview and an assessment process which is tailored to your apprenticeship position.

You will need:

  • Three A Levels (or equivalent)
  • At least Grade 4 or C GCSE Maths and English.

You will also need to meet the government's eligibility criteria:

  • Have been a UK/EU/EAA resident for the past three years or more prior to starting the course 
  • Have left full time education when the apprenticeship you are applying for is due to start 
  • Be aged at least 16 years old to meet government funding criteria.


Course outline

Programme overview

The Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship was designed in close partnership with leading employers and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).

Through a combination of work-based learning and study, you will be immersed in your organisation’s culture and be fully prepared for the challenges of your sector. Your degree is specifically designed for apprentices and is directly applicable to a range of careers in business.

The programme covers a broad spectrum of business functions to give you a high-level understanding of how a successful business operates. You will also have the opportunity to select optional modules to specialise your learning.

Who is this apprenticeship for?

This apprenticeship is ideal for those who aspire to be managers in business. The apprenticeship will provide you with a wide overview of business theory that can be applied in your day-to-day work.

Programme content

This programme is taught at undergraduate level through a set of core modules that will provide the theory you need in your day-to-day role. There are three routes available:

  • The four-year route is taught at a slower pace to allow for more engagement with your degree apprenticeship tutor to help you build your business skills portfolio. This route is recommended for recent managers and new employees in the organisation such as school leavers.

  • The three-year route is recommended for more experienced managers who are ready for a faster-paced learning experience. 

  • The 18-month route is a top-up programme for learners who have already achieved a Foundation degree in Business or Management or a Level 5 Operations Manager Apprenticeship.

Three and four-year route

Both the three-year and four-year routes are split into three stages and cover the following topics:

Stage one

  • Financial management
  • Marketing
  • Strategic management

Stage two

  • Operations management
  • Leadership and change management
  • Excellence in business project management

Final stage

  • Your choice of two optional modules
  • Final project

Optional modules on offer change every year depending on student demand. A typical offering would include:

  • Advanced operations
  • Advanced project management
  • Big data and analytics
  • Digital marketing
  • Innovation and new product development
  • Logistics management (in partnership with the School of Engineering and Applied Science)
  • Strategic human resource management
  • Strategic retail management
  • Strategic sales management
  • Strategic supply chain management (in partnership with the School of Engineering and Applied Science)
  • Talent management

18-month route

This fast-tracked route is split into two stages:

Stage one

  • Marketing
  • Financial management
  • Leading operational change

Final stage

  • Strategic management 
  • Developing leadership ability 
  • Final project

The portfolio

All routes will include a professional and personal development programme throughout the duration of the programme designed to help you complete a portfolio of evidence of your new skills and knowledge ready for your final End Point Assessment.

Every apprentice is allocated a dedicated degree apprenticeship tutor who will support your learning and skills development. They are there to help you translate your theoretical learning into practical application in your workplace.

You will study two modules Developing Managerial Skill and The Professional Manager to help you with skills development, personal reflection, collaborative working and ultimately, the construction of your portfolio.

Learning, teaching and assessment

Learning and teaching

Apprenticeships are structured differently to a traditional degree. You'll spend the majority of your time in the workplace doing a real full-time job as well as studying for your degree part-time. Your learning will be made up of a combination of online seminars that take place outside of office hours as well as occasional sessions on campus where you can meet face-to-face with your peers and our academics.

Study time is structured to fit around your job. Your apprenticeship is designed in partnership with your employer, so you don't need to worry about your work and study commitments clashing. They work hand in hand.

Once a term in the middle of your module you will attend a two-day study session on campus. This will usually include:

  • An information session about the upcoming assessments
  • Lectures/seminars for your current module
  • Personal and professional development workshop
  • A one-to-one session with your degree apprenticeship tutor
  • Portfolio contribution workshops

For your professional and personal development module and portfolio, you will be supported by your degree apprenticeship tutor. You can expect a monthly one-to-one session (either face-to-face, over the phone or Skype) plus a workplace visit every six months.


There are no exams for this apprenticeship, instead, you will be assessed throughout by two pieces of coursework per module. The first assignment is due halfway through each module and the second is due at the end of the module. Assessment dates are published at the start of the degree apprenticeship to help you plan your work and personal commitments around studying.

In your final year, you will complete a large work-based project that will require you to use all the theory and skills you have gained throughout the apprenticeship. Throughout the programme, you will also complete a business portfolio that showcases the skills you have learned and how you have actioned them in the workplace.

Your apprenticeship also includes an end point assessment, which consists of a review of your final project and portfolio, followed by an interview with representatives from Aston University, your employer, and an independent assessor. After the interview, based both on your performance and complete portfolio, the assessors consider what grade you should be awarded for your apprenticeship – fail, pass, merit or distinction.

Professional accreditation

The Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship was designed by employers and in collaboration with the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and Aston University.

By successfully completing this programme, you will be eligible to apply for Chartered Status from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) in addition to a BSc in Leadership and Business Management and your apprenticeship certificate.

Programme Director

Dr David Cantliff

David was employed in the private sector for over 25 years and in that time, he embarked on a program of part-time self-funded study resulting in the submission of a PhD thesis.

David began his teaching career in 2007 on a part-time basis whilst also being employed in the private sector. In 2011, David accepted a full-time lecturing post at De Montfort University and then joined Aston University in 2018.

The combination of practical experience and academic knowledge means that David emphasises the development and enhancement of the student learning experience through the application and critical reflection of theory and practice. His main research interests include crisis management, resilience, organisational theory, decision-making and ideology.

How to apply

I am not employed in the industry

The first step in joining our Degree Apprenticeship programme is to find and apply for a relevant job vacancy. All our current degree apprenticeship vacancies are listed below and are updated frequently. Please check back regularly for new vacancies.

Find out more about applying for degree apprenticeships

I am already employed in the industry

If you are already employed in this industry, you should discuss with your manager if your organisation is working in partnership with Aston University. If they are, you will make an application through your employer. 

If your employer is not yet an Aston partner, they can get in touch with our Apprenticeships Team to find out more information about working with us.

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Information for employers

If you are an employer or you want to send information about this degree apprenticeship to your manager, take a look at the course page dedicated to employers.

What's it like to be a degree apprentice?

"Apprenticeships aren’t just about making tea and coffee. You’re given a real job with real responsibility right from the onset. I was lucky enough to meet the Prime Minister earlier this year to talk about apprenticeships and STEM subjects. I was also lucky enough to help with an event in Washington DC."

Katie Bradbury
Degree Apprentice, Microsoft
Read more

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