Reference year 2023
    Content updates and contributors

    Version 2023 - Drafted by Mergim Jahiu, Senior advisor, Swiss Federal University for Vocational Education and Training (SFUVET) - Member of Cedefop Community of apprenticeship experts for Switzerland

    Q2. Is there an official definition of ‘apprenticeship’ or ‘apprentice’ in your country?

    The term “apprenticeship” is not used officially in written except for the definition of the Apprenticeship contract (art. 8 VPETO, art 14 VPETA). Rather, the terms “dual-track VET programme” is defined as “a VET programme where most learning takes place at a host company or within a host company network” (art. 6 VPETO).

    Q3. At which level do apprenticeship schemes exist in your country?
    At upper secondary level
    At post-secondary (not tertiary)
    At tertiary level
    At sectoral level

    Dual-track VET programmes: including 2-year programmes (VET Certificates) and 3 or 4-year programmes (VET Diplomas). Altogether, there are around 240 programmes.

    Q4. How well-established are apprenticeship schemes in your country?
    A long history (before 2000)
    A recent history (in 2000s)
    Pilot scheme

    Apprenticeships in Switzerland date back to the guild system where education and training was provided by businesses specialised in craftsmanship. The first Federal Vocational Education and Training Act came into force in 1933, which established the combined school and work-based model for upper-secondary level VET programmes. The current model is regulated by the VPETA since 2004. The Federal Act is largely based on cantonal regulations that developed from 1890 onward.