GSS apprenticeships

The GSS offers two apprenticeships: the Level 4 Data Analyst programme and the Level 6 Data Scientist programme. Applications for the Level 4 programme opened on Tuesday 27 February 2024. Applications for the upcoming Level 6 programme are now closed.

Apprenticeships are a vital route into the GSS, allowing people from all backgrounds to study while working with and learning from experienced professionals across government.

We recognise that investing in people and offering excellent apprenticeships will enable us to grow an engaged and committed workforce that has the right skills to deliver a high-quality service to our users.

An apprenticeship programme offers learning alongside formal employment, where you will apply and develop your new skills. You will be learning off the job for 20% of the time and working in government for the other 80%.

Read about the Level 4 Data Analyst Apprenticeship.

Read about the Level 6 Data Science Apprenticeship.

Frequently asked questions

The two programmes would suit:

  • people studying technical or vocational courses, e.g. students with BTEC qualifications in relevant areas including business, science, mathematics, ICT
  • A Level student’s studying a wide combination of subjects, eg STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects and those who are studying other subjects with interest in data science
  • apprentices and other young people already in work
  • adults in or out of work who meet entry requirements
  • existing civil servants – people who have joined the Civil Service without first getting a degree or who have a degree in something other than data science
  • those not eligible to join the GSG profession through other entry routes such as Statistical officer

Both the Level 4 Data Analyst and the Level 6 Data Science Apprenticeships are available for current staff of any grade looking to upskill. Staff must:

  • have line manager agreement
  • be in a role that will support their apprenticeship learning
  • have an aptitude for Maths
  • be prepared to undertake the substantial challenge of an apprenticeship

Read Ian Banda’s blog about how he transformed his career by undertaking both apprenticeships.

If you are considering undertaking the L6 Data Science degree apprenticeship in England you will need to either have a Maths A level, or alternatively you can take a Mathematics, Statistics and Computing test at the application stage.

If you have significant experience in this area and have already completed higher level study in a similar subject, such as a Maths degree, you will be asked to provide further details at application stage to ensure there is no substantial overlap to gain funding for the apprenticeship.

If you would like more details or are interested in applying please email

The GSS apprenticeships are delivered in conjunction with our training providers, details of the programmes and providers are:

  • Level 4 Data Analyst in England QA
  • Level 4 Data Analyst in Wales ALS
  • Level 6 Data Scientist in England York St John
  • Level 6 Data Scientist in Wales Cardiff Metropolitan

Most GSS apprentices who are recruited in for either programme, are recruited on Fixed Term Appointments (FTAs). As with any FTA there is no job guarantee at the end. Each department has their own apprenticeship strategy and apprentice contracts, their length and conversions to permanency are matters for departments to decide upon.

Line managers should support apprentices in applying for roles at the end of the apprenticeship and should seek support from their departmental HR team who will be able to advise on the departmental approach to apprentice contracts.

As the apprentices recruited through the GSS have been recruited on merit under fair and open competition, they can apply for internal posts across the Civil Service.
Completion of either apprenticeship programme does not automatically lead to a promotion.

On completion of a Level 4 Apprenticeship including at least two years in a statistical or data analysis field in government, you can apply for a badging exercise to join the Government Statistician Group profession. You will need to demonstrate your CPD in statistics or data analysis.

Continuing professional development for apprentices

Continuing professional development (CPD) is necessary for people to maintain knowledge and skills related to their professional lives.

Apprentices can keep a record of their learning by using the GSS CPD log book (ods, 13KB).

The purpose of the CPD log book is to:

  • keep a running tally of your CPD (planned and unplanned)
  • build a record to present to GSS interview boards
  • help facilitate a discussion with your manager or mentor or head of profession as a means of monitoring, evaluating and planning your learning and development

The logbook will travel with you as you move from job to job so will serve as a useful record of your CPD throughout your career and will be examined as part of the recruitment and selection process.

On completion of a Level 4 Apprenticeship including at least two years in a statistical or data analysis field in government, you can apply for a badging exercise to join the Government Statistician Group profession. You will need to demonstrate your CPD in statistics or data analysis.

Interviews with graduates from the Level 6 Data Science Apprenticeship

You can watch interviews with some of our graduates on the Cardiff Metropolitan University YouTube channel. Watch:

GSS Apprentice Network

GSS Apprentices are often widely dispersed across different government departments and teams. The GSS Apprentice Network provides a forum where apprentices can meet other GSS apprentices and support each other throughout their apprenticeships. The network is run by volunteer apprentices and keeps in touch through online meetings and a messaging group. Further ideas include holding in-person work and social events. The network can help in many ways, such as providing exam support and advice, or connecting you with another apprentice through the “Buddy” scheme.

If you are an apprentice who would like to join this group, or you would like more information about the network, please contact

Questions about apprenticeships

You can contact the careers team at to ask any questions about apprenticeships.