Abstract: This talk examines two distinct conceptions of the apprentice mode of learning and considers aspects of their applicability for initial occupational preparation in contemporary times and workplace requirements. Current conceptions of apprenticeship are often those associated with a novice, usually a young person, being guided in their learning of occupational skills by a more experienced practitioner. However, another view of apprenticeship is that which arises from the original meaning of the term. A key differences with the contemporary account is that this conception positions apprentices’ learning in ways as highly interdependent with the physical and social environment in which they work and learn, but not being directly guided by more experienced practitioners. Given the distinct emphases in these two accounts their particular characteristics and qualities need to be understood.