About this programme

Our Network Engineer Level 4 Apprenticeship combines online learning, live event training and on-the-job experience to develop real world skills using cutting edge technology. This programme is perfect for those fresh out of an IT education or already employed in the tech sector looking to take the next step.

This programme concentrates on modern network infrastructure, advanced connectivity and advanced security. This enables the opportunity to develop and enhance technical skills, ensuring learners have the technical grounding needed to become a skilled Network Designer, Systems Engineer or Network Administrator.

What’s included?

On successful completion of the programme, apprentices gain the following qualifications:

  • Network Engineer Level 4
  • Comptia Network+*
  • BCS Certificate in Information Security Management Principles - CISMP**

* QA will offer one attempt free of charge. Any further attempts could be funded by the employer.

**Optional content on Cloud Academy, in addition to the programme. The exam, if the learner chooses to sit it, is funded by the learner/employer

Read more

What's needed?

The entry requirements for this programme are as follows:

  • A Levels in ICT/Computing
  • Or a Level 3 Apprenticeship in a similar subject
  • Or and International Baccalaureate at Level 3 in ICT
  • Or a BTEC Extended Diploma in IT (180 credits)
  • Learners must not hold an existing qualification at the same or higher level as this apprenticeship in a similar subject

Job role suitability if already in employment:

To help you determine whether this programme is suitable for you or your employee you must be able to answer “yes” to the following questions.

  • Are you or is your employee in a full time technical role (which means you/your employee’s daily tasks revolve around networks)?
  • Are you or will your apprentice be responsible for installing, configuring, and testing appropriate network components or devices whether physical or virtual
  • Are you or will your apprentice be responsible for acquiring and analysing network performance data to monitor network activity
  • Are you or will your apprentice be responsible for optimising and maintaining the performance of network systems whether physical or virtual
  • Are you or will your apprentice be responsible for Investigating and problem solving to address technical performance issues or escalate as necessary
  • Are you or will your apprentice be responsible for undertaking upgrades to a network including physical or virtual systems

Note: Speak to your QA Account Manager for more advice on eligibility and job role/existing staff suitability for this programme.

Read more

What's learned?

Apprentices need tech-enabled apprenticeship programmes that resonate with their day-to-day life. In keeping with this - we have innovated through technology and digital content creation to deliver a ‘high tech, high touch’ approach to blended learning.

High-quality learning content on the go. We deliver “mobile-first” education – this means learning can be accessed anytime, anywhere, on any device.

This programme teaches skills in:

  • Navigating Windows servers
  • Administering and securing large complex networks
  • Working on complex setups
  • Identifying security threats and vulnerabilities

Empowering roles like:

  • Network Technician
  • Network Engineer
  • Systems Engineer
  • Network Administrator
  • Network Designer
  • Third Line Helpdesk Support
Read more


During the programme apprentices are required to spend 20% of time at work on off-the-job learning.

Our programme helps people easily fit their learning around their day job with access to our online learning platform – learning can be accessed anytime, anywhere and on any device so you get high-quality content on the go.

The modules in our Network Engineer Level 4 apprenticeship introduce more advanced technical skills, developing knowledge to a higher level. Our face-to-face training workshops and online learning develops the core set of skills they must be able to do well to be competent in their role.

As part of their programme apprentice’s will complete:

  • Five knowledge modules teaching advanced theory and practical applications, through a combination of online learning and practical classroom workshops.
  • A work-based portfolio showcasing how the learner has demonstrated the skills they’ve learned in real work projects. Apprentices will participate in a Professional discussion around this portfolio as part of their EPA
  • A Simulation Assessment. A virtual lab conducted over 14 hours assessing the apprentices’ ability to resolve Network Failures and to undertake Network optimisations. The Apprentice will also participate in 45 minute questioning reviewing their performance during this simulation assessment

To ensure all apprentices can do these skills consistently well, we’ve designed modules with the following learning outcomes:

Module 1: Networking Fundamentals

  • TCP/IP and OSI
  • IPv4 and IPv6
  • Routing Protocols
  • Configuring Wired and Wireless networks
  • How to use a network visualisation tool such as Cisco Packet Tracer to create a basic network

Module 2: Network Infrastructure

  • Consequences of non-compliance in an Organisational environment
  • Introduction to Key Networking Concepts
  • TCP and OSI models
  • Binary and Subnetting concepts
  • Networks services and protocols
  • Understanding the use of Cisco Packet Tracer

Module 3: Network Concepts & Troubleshooting

This module will cover the CompTIA Network+ Syllabus.

Module 4: Network Systems and Architecture

  • Storage and backup configurations
  • Installing a server
  • DNS & DHCP
  • Server Operating systems
  • Install Windows/Linux server and post configuration activities
  • Installing Active Directory
  • Configuring a Domain Controller

Module 5: Network Optimisation and Security

  • Business continuity
  • The importance of security
  • Information security
  • Risk Management
  • Security controls
  • Defining security terminology and identifying threats
  • Causes and consequences of network and IT infrastructure failure
  • Network security tools
  • Secure cloud services and virtualisation
  • Change management

There is also the opportunity for an optional week, dedicated to revision and resits if you need it.

For more information download the handout (link in right-hand side panel above)

NOTE: this programme is available in England. Based in Scotland? Click here

To contact us for more information please fill in the form below.

Read more

Why choose a QA apprenticeship

  • 91% of QA apprentices go straight into full-time jobs
  • 2.1 million jobs in the digital economy
  • £42,578 average skilled digital salary

Programme handout

Download the latest information about this QA apprenticeship programme.


Our apprenticeship programmes

This apprenticeship programme is part of a wider offering, ranging from Level 3 apprenticeships all the way to Level 7 Masters degrees.

Our programmes

= Required
= Certification

Frequently asked questions

How do apprenticeships work?

You’ll spend most of the time working (80% in fact). You’ll complete work projects – doing all the things you’re learning, right away on the job. The rest of the time, you’ll be learning. In lots of different ways.

You can take your career and knowledge progression as far as you want to go with our apprenticeships – even up to gaining a Master's degree.

Who can do an apprenticeship?

For most apprenticeships, you need to be aged 16 and over, be eligible to live and work in the UK and have three to five GCSEs.

Maths and English are important skills for any career, so you’ll need to have them under your belt. Here’s where it gets a bit technical. You’ll need to (at least) have Functional Skills qualifications at Level 2 in Maths and English. Don’t worry, we’ll check your qualifications for you when you apply and explain.

But, even if you don’t have them yet – all is not lost. You can complete them during your QA apprenticeship.

Each apprenticeship has different entry requirements. Check the one you’re interested in to see if you’re a match.

Who will support me on my apprenticeship?

You'll have a whole team behind you. We'll help you get the most out of your apprenticeship.

  • Skills coach
  • Classroom tutors
  • Your line manager
  • Learner services team
  • Safeguarding

What will happen after I apply?

We’ll get in touch if it looks like you’re a match for the apprenticeship job. First, we’ll call to get to know you better. Tell us what you’re about, what your goals are. We’ll also get your details.

You’ll get a link to upload some important documents – to check you can do the apprenticeship you’ve applied for (proof of right to work in the UK, your qualifications etc.). Don’t worry, it won’t take long.

When we have these, we’ll call on WhatsApp to check your ID.

Next, you’ll get a link to complete your profile. This bit is important – your profile is your opportunity to tell potential employers a bit about you. Your skills. Your passion. Why you want this apprenticeship.

We’ll keep in touch about the apprenticeship job you applied for. If any others come up that we think you’d like, we’ll let you know. If you’re keen, we’ll help you prep and we’ll set up that interview.

If all goes well... you’ll get the job. Then you just need to start planning for your first day. Hey presto.

If you’re applying for a job with one of our larger employers, you might be invited to an assessment day – or they might have other special steps to take. Don’t worry, we’ll give you all the details.

Contact Us

Please complete this form and we'll be in touch