Cyber Defender & Responder Level 4 Apprenticeship

QA's Cyber Defender & Responder apprenticeship helps to build an understanding of cyber threats, hazards, risks, controls, measures and mitigations to protect your organisation's systems and people.

Employers: submit an enquiry Applicants: view jobs

Why choose our Cyber Defender & Responder Level 4 apprenticeship?

The Cyber Defender & Responder apprentice will use investigation techniques and analytics skills to defend against and respond to cyber incidents within the network environment.

QA's exclusive partnership with Circadence Corporation, the pioneer of the hands-on gamified learning platform Project Ares®, allows us to uniquely incorporate hands-on scenario training into our cyber security apprenticeships. The Project Ares platform offers a totally immersive experience, using automated features to support skills adoption with an in-game advisor, Athena, who advises our players through scenario-based challenges. The platform scenarios replicate the unpredictability and escalating levels of complexity that cyberattacks can present. It drives high levels of engagement through leaderboards and badges, elements used widely in the gaming world. 

QA’s Cyber Defender & Responder Level 4 apprenticeship programme enables the apprentice to:

  • Develop problem-solving and critical thinking skills in a safe, but realistic environment
  • Apply all of the acquired skills throughout the programme, with added scoring of players and opponent actions with replay for object assessment
  • Take part in hands-on training and active-learning models that increase retention rates by 75% so that cyber apprentices can prepare for real-world challenges

The Cyber Defender & Responder Apprenticeship programme overview

Learners benefit from a flexible and blended learning journey, helping them apply cyber security solutions to a range of real-life scenarios – gaining valuable workplace skills faster.

The typical duration of the Cyber Security Defender & Responder Level 4 programme is 16 months, plus a 4-month end-point assessment. View the modules in order below, including Introduction to Cyber Security, Networking Fundamentals, Operating Systems, Security Foundations, Security Management, Active Defence, Cloud Security, Programming and Scripting, and Security Blue Team.

Download programme guide Download flyer

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for this programme are as follows:

an A Level in ICT
OR an International Baccalaureate at Level 3 in ICT
OR a Level 3 apprenticeship in a similar subject
OR a BTEC Extended Diploma in IT (180 credits)

*Please see the programme guide for full entry requirements.

Possible job roles for a Cyber Defender & responder apprentice

This programme is suitable for multiple roles, such as:

Cyber Security Analyst, Threat Hunter, Forensics & Incident Response analyst, Secure Operations Centre (SOC) Analyst, Network Intrusion analyst, Incident Response Centre (IRC) Analyst, Network Operations Centre (NOC) Security Analyst.

Skills a Cyber Defender & Responder needs:

Strong analytical skills

  • A methodical, step-by-step approach to resolving issues
  • Business skills like effective communication, teamwork and task/time management
  • The adaptability to do a range of work – sometimes complex and non-routine – in different environments
  • The ability to work under direction, use discretion and determine when to escalate issues.


Employer Funding

The Cyber Defender & Responder programme can be funded using the apprenticeship levy, requiring you to only pay up to 5% of the programme.

Learn about the apprenticeship levy

Looking to become an apprentice?

Your first step is to apply for one of our apprentice jobs. Start by clicking here and choose the relevant filter to see our current vacancies:

View all apprenticeship jobs

Let's talk

Start your digital transformation journey today

Contact us today via the form or give us a call.

0113 220 7150 (UK)

(415) 630-5133 (US)

If you're an individual interested in starting an apprenticeship, find out more here

By submitting this form, you agree to QA processing your data in accordance with our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in our emails or contacting us directly.