A/N: So, I've decided to create a collection of stories in the HPverse - with some crossovers. Additionally, these will heavily feature my headcanons on what the Wizarding World is like, not just in Britain, but in various areas of the world. So, I decided to create the Encyclopedia Arcana to serve as a repository of my headcanons, with the background of being an in-universe encyclopedia. Enjoy!
In the British Wizarding World, and in quite a large amount of the Wizarding World, in fact, most post-secondary magical education is provided in the form of apprenticeships and masteries. Here is a short detailing of how they work in Britain.
First of all, to start on the path to becoming a Master, one must first be an apprentice. To be legally recognized as an apprentice, one must first find a Master willing to accept them as an apprentice. Following this, the Master and Apprentice must approach the Ministry to be legally recognized. First, both of them must provide evidence that they have both signed a contract governing the terms of the apprenticeship, and that the terms of this contract don't violate any Ministry law. Additionally, the prospective apprentice must provide proof of them having passed a NEWT in the subject relevant to the field the Master is a Master of. For example, to become an Apprentice Runologist, one would require a NEWT in Ancient Runes. To become an Apprentice Potioneer, one would require a NEWT in Potions.
Following being legally recognized, the training begins. The specifics of what the Master must teach the Apprentice are determined by the apprenticeship contract, but generally, there is a minimum amount of time and a maximum amount of time determined. If the Master believes that the Apprentice is ready to become a Journeyman between these two points in time, then they will bring the Apprentice to the Department of Magical Education to take an exam to prove their abilities. If they pass this exam, they will then be presented with a Certificate of Journeymanship.
Once they have become a Journeyman, they are then responsible for their education. However, many Masters will provide tutoring services for Journeymen, for a fee. Rarely, a Journeyman's former Master will continue to tutor them, now in preparation for the Mastery. To become a Master, a Journeyman must prove their abilities in three ways. First, they must take a written exam. Second, they must take a practical exam. Third, they must write a rough equivalent to a thesis or dissertation. Due to the difficulty of all three parts, it generally takes years to be able to pass all three of them, and it is fairly rare.
For comparison with the Muggle world, think of completing an apprenticeship as getting an undergraduate degree, and then think of becoming a Master as getting a Ph.D. or a doctorate. Generally, you can get a job as just a Journeyman, but being a Master is generally required to be taken seriously as a researcher, and if you wish to teach any apprentices, you must have a Mastery.
A/N: Whaddaya think? I already have a few headcanons to put out, but if you have any suggestions on headcanons to make and include in the Encyclopedia Arcana, I'd love to hear them!