With End Point Assessment (EPA) apprenticeships in England have changed for good.
Under the old Frameworks system, training providers would assess a learner’s competency over the course of their training. This model was called continuous assessment. Yet over time employers found that this model often led to a gap between what the learner should have known, as per the Framework, and what they knew in practise. This has been reported as one of the causes of the UK’s skills gap, costing businesses £6.3 billion per year.
To combat this the Government has replaced Frameworks with apprenticeship Standards. These Standards outline the knowledge, skills and behaviours that a learner should be able to show once trained.
Under Standards, the learner must go through an evaluation process at the end of their training. This is End Point Assessment.
What is End Point Assessment?
End Point Assessment is a series of assessments that a learner must take within the last three months of their training. This assesses their skills across a range of scenarios to provide a rounded view of their competency.
Watch the video below for an introduction to what’s involved in End Point Assessment:
How does it affect my business?
When you decide to hire an apprentice, you need to identify their role and then contact your training provider of choice. If you need help finding a provider use our free Training Provider Finder to get started.
You then need to choose an End Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO).
An EPAO is a third-party organisation with Education Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) approval to assess specific Standards. To ensure there is no risk of collusion between the trainer and assessor the EPAO must be separate to the training provider.
According to ESFA guidelines, you need to have your EPAO in place by the time your learner starts their apprenticeship. While your training provider can recommend an EPAO the choice is entirely yours.
Once your EPAO is in place your learner can start their apprenticeship. For most Standards the learner will spend 80% of their time at work and 20% of their time in off-the-job training.
Gateway is the point at which you, your learner and the training provider all agree that the learner is ready to take End Point Assessment. Once notified, your EPAO will arrange a schedule for the module-based evaluations that make up End Point Assessment.
As your learner continues their apprenticeship you will not need to have much contact with your EPAO until Gateway.
Reaching End Point Assessment
When the learner has finished every module of End Point Assessment the process is complete. Your EPAO will now grade their performance and supporting evidence to determine their final result.
From this point on, your business will benefit with a skilled, qualified and motivated employee.
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