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Free USA Apprenticeship and Pre-apprenticeship Courses

31 courses

Apprenticeships are helping to fill growing skills gaps across America and opening a wealth of opportunities to people interested in vocational training. According to the US Department of Labor, 94% of apprentices who complete an apprenticeship retain employment. Combining elements of both education and hands-on experience, they provide the ultimate option if you wish to earn as you learn. While across the USA the range of programs is constantly growing, the traditional trades still dominate with the top four most popular apprenticeships remaining electrician, carpenter, construction craft laborer and plumber.

While employers are proficient at providing the on-the-job training aspect of an apprenticeship program, accessing appropriate theory courses can be more difficult. Alison’s free online courses for skilled trades step into the gap with all the head knowledge that is required to back up that all-important hands-on experience. Many of the practical skills courses in our Apprenticeship Hub have been provided by USAID. The United States Agency for International Development has created a series of courses focusing on trades such as electrics, plumbing, carpentry and masonry. These courses have been designed to bring any learner from being a complete beginner to understanding their chosen trade.

Pre-Apprenticeship Courses

If you are facing challenges to finding a pathway into a rewarding career, a pre-apprenticeship is an attractive option. These aim to help disadvantaged people - women, people with disabilities, young people and veterans - to enter into registered apprenticeships and make a start on improving their lives. Our apprenticeship hub can help you decide whether a particular career is for you, before you commit to a formal apprenticeship. Perhaps you flunked high school and need to work on your basic math? At Alison, you will find many courses that will help you improve your basic education including math and language skills. Or you may have given years of service to your country and feel the need to catch up on developments in IT or engineering. Doing our courses online, in the privacy of your own home, means you can take your time in getting comfortable with a subject, rather than being flung in at the deep end.

We also have many courses that will help you prepare for the world of work or identify which career might suit you best. Why not start with our popular Workplace Personality Assessment?

Feel free to also visit our popular Career Guide

We have curated courses across 5 segments: Carpentry, Plumbing, Electrical, Construction and Pre-Apprenticeship Courses for Community Based Organisations.

Top Free Online USA Apprenticeships Courses


You’ll rarely meet an unemployed plumber as demand outstrips supply across the world. There are different areas of expertise within plumbing, from focusing on infrastructure, understanding how pipes and drainage systems work to designing plumbing systems. As an apprentice you will learn how plumbers are responsible for assembling, installing and repairing pipes and pipelines in homes, commercial and public buildings and industrial sites.They can also specialize in the areas of heating and ventilation. A plumber may install or repair storage tanks, bathroom and kitchen equipment, refrigerators and freezers and heating systems such as boilers and radiators. They also are called upon to check for leaks and faults and carry out repairs from burst pipes to mechanical failings in a heating system. With Alison’s free online plumbing courses you can learn more about pipes and drainage systems as well as the tools of the trade and safe working practices. 

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Carpentry and joinery are versatile and flexible trades that can take you into working on large-scale construction projects or crafting individual pieces of furniture. Through our free online carpentry courses, you can learn off-the-job about constructing, erecting and installing wooden structures and fittings. You will progress from learning about different wood finishes and tools to working with accuracy. The training includes erecting the timber frame for a home including the roof and flooring, as well as building doors and staircases. A qualified carpenter is able to follow drawings and specifications for a project and select the best materials and tools for the best finish.

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For those over 18 years with a steady hand and good eyesight, a career as an electrician is interesting and well-paid work. As a trainee you will learn about installing, maintaining and repairing electrical and electronic equipment. While having normal color vision is preferable for entering a career in this field as you need to be able to differentiate between different colored wires to operate safely, being partially color blind no longer rules you out from pursuing this line of work. Through our free online electrical courses you will learn about following specifications and diagrams to install wiring and connect wires to outlets and plugs. Our courses cover the basics of electrical circuits and include the use of test equipment to analyze faults and repair or replace any wires that are worn or damaged. Safety is paramount when working with electricity and our courses will teach you everything from working safely to interpreting electrical drawings and understanding key symbols and terms. We are also proud to bring you Marine Electrical courses, for those with ambitions to work on ships and boats. 

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While many of the trades can be carried out as part of a team or in a solo capacity, construction work appeals to those who enjoy working in a team. The work can involve clearing a construction site and getting it ready for building, using a digger to dig out foundations, mixing concrete and building work using different materials. The project could be a house, a large building or infrastructure such as a bridge or road. Construction workers operate alongside other trades, such as carpenters, plumbers, electricians and roofers and are responsible for working to project specifications and being aware of their own safety as well as other people’s. If you are entering an apprenticeship with a construction company, get the foundations in place with one of our courses related to this ever-evolving industry. Talk to your employer about our free online construction courses, then register with Alison, enroll on a course and begin!


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Pre-Apprenticeship Theory Courses for Community-based Organizations

In the USA, community-based organizations (CBOs) are often at the forefront of delivering pre-apprenticeship programs for direct entry into an apprenticeship. They are required to provide at least two components: entry-level occupational skills and job readiness skills. Alison can provide you with free theory training from experts across a broad range of fields, including many hard to come by topics. We’re a completely free one-stop-shop for courses in areas where you may lack expertise, from health and safety training to Microsoft Word to speaking English. As far as job readiness goes, we have courses on dealing with the public, writing a resume, communicating with others, managing your time and much more.

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