Key information

  1. Status: Approved for delivery
  2. Reference: ST1407
  3. Version: 1.0
  4. Level: 3
  5. Typical duration to gateway: 36 months
  6. Typical EPA period: 3 months
  7. Maximum funding: £24000
  8. Route: Engineering and manufacturing
  9. Date updated: 04/12/2023
  10. Approved for delivery: 30 November 2023
  11. Lars code: 744
  12. EQA provider: Ofqual
  13. Example progression routes:
  14. Review:

    This apprenticeship standard will be reviewed after three years.

Print apprenticeship summary

Apprenticeship summary

Overview of the role

Apply a process or processes to create products to a specification.

Occupation summary

Process industry technicians are found in process manufacturing industries.

They run processes involving high hazard inputs to produce products that meet specifications. This may include chemical-based products, stabilised crude, ethane, butane, methane, and hydrogen. The working environment is highly controlled due to the use of high hazard chemicals. Technicians must follow high-level safety systems. Typically, production is on a large scale using a continuous process. This usually means operations are 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Technicians may be required to work shifts.

Technicians run and maintain the process or processes in line with operational parameters. They conduct quality assurance, resolving or escalating any issues, and complete records. Maintaining workplace safety by following health, safety and environmental risk and management systems is a vital part of the role. Preparing equipment for maintenance and bringing equipment back on line is also part of the role. They also support risk assessment, improvement activities, and audits.

On a daily basis, they work with other members of the process team. They also have contact with people in other teams for example, laboratory, maintenance, process engineering, supply chain, and warehouse. They may also have contact with external people such as, customers, service providers, and regulators.

They must ensure that the process and products meet quality specifications and are produced to schedule. They must work to external manufacturing regulations to protect the process, product, plant and equipment, company employees, and the environment. They must also consider sustainability. They may need to wear specialist PPE to protect the product or themselves. This may include, safety glasses, chemical resistant gloves, suits, and footwear, and breathing apparatus. They may work alone or part of a team. They work with minimal supervision, taking responsibility for the quality and accuracy of their work.

Typical job titles include:

Chemical process technician Chemical production technician Hydrogen production technician Green leaf Oil and gas process technician Petrochemical process technician Plant technician Process industry technician Process manufacturing technician Process technician Production technician

Duties

  • Duty 1 Run and maintain process industry plant and equipment in line with operational parameters. For example, pressures, flows, temperatures, levels, production targets, and specification.
  • Duty 2 Maintain the work area following health, safety, environmental and risk management systems.
  • Duty 3 Resolve and report, or escalate, process, quality, health and safety, environment, and operating environment issues when operating out of normal parameters. For example, out of specification parameter.
  • Duty 4 Undertake quality assurance processes.
  • Duty 5 Conduct dispatch of intermediate product or final processed product.
  • Duty 6 Conduct handover responsibilities - receiving information from or providing information to other shifts or maintenance teams.
  • Duty 7 Complete process documentation - digital or paper based. For example, process and production records, traceability records, and quality assurance records.
  • Duty 8 Conduct first line routine maintenance and testing of process and plant equipment.
  • Duty 9 Prepare plant for shutdown for example, for maintenance, overall, and decommissioning.
  • Duty 10 Bring process industry equipment back on-line.
  • Duty 11 Participate in risk assessment activities.
  • Duty 12 Participate in continuous improvement activities.
  • Duty 13 Support audits - internal or external. For example, supply information.

Apprenticeship summary

ST1407, process industry manufacturing technician level 3

This is a summary of the key things that you – the apprentice and your employer need to know about your end-point assessment (EPA). You and your employer should read the EPA plan for the full details. It has information on assessment method requirements, roles and responsibilities, and re-sits and re-takes.

What is an end-point assessment and why it happens

An EPA is an assessment at the end of your apprenticeship. It will assess you against the knowledge, skills, and behaviours (KSBs) in the occupational standard. Your training will cover the KSBs. The EPA is your opportunity to show an independent assessor how well you can carry out the occupation you have been trained for.

Your employer will choose an end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) to deliver the EPA. Your employer and training provider should tell you what to expect and how to prepare for your EPA.

The length of the training for this apprenticeship is typically 36 months. The EPA period is typically 3 months.

The overall grades available for this apprenticeship are:

  • fail
  • pass
  • merit
  • distinction

When you pass the EPA, you will be awarded your apprenticeship certificate.

EPA gateway

The EPA gateway is when the EPAO checks and confirms that you have met any requirements required before you start the EPA. You will only enter the gateway when your employer says you are ready.

The gateway requirements for your EPA are:

  • achieved English and mathematics qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules
  • for the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence, you must submit a portfolio of evidence

Assessment methods


Observation with questions

You will be observed by an independent assessor completing your work. It will last at least 3 hours. They will ask you at least 5 questions.


Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

You will have an interview with an independent assessor. It will last at least 60 minutes. They will ask you at least 8 questions. The questions will be about certain aspects of your occupation. You need to compile a portfolio of evidence before the EPA gateway. You can use it to help answer the questions.


Multiple-choice test

You will complete a multiple-choice test. It will be closed book, meaning you will not have access to any books or reference materials.
In the test you can have:

  • a scientific calculator

The test will have 40 multiple-choice questions. You will have 60 minutes to complete it.


The EPAO will confirm where and when each assessment method will take place.

Who to contact for help or more information

You should speak to your employer if you have a query that relates to your job.

You should speak to your training provider if you have any questions about your training or EPA before it starts.

You should receive detailed information and support from the EPAO before the EPA starts. You should speak to them if you have any questions about your EPA once it has started.


Reasonable adjustments

If you have a disability, a physical or mental health condition or other special considerations, you may be able to have a reasonable adjustment that takes this into account. You should speak to your employer, training provider and EPAO and ask them what support you can get. The EPAO will decide if an adjustment is appropriate.


Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech). Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship and receipt of the apprenticeship certificate, individuals are eligible to apply for EngTech through a shortened application route. It will need to confirm that the EngTech requirements have been met. Individuals also need to be a member of a professional body licensed by the Engineering Council to be awarded this status. Further information is on the IChemE’s website.

Print occupational standard

Details of the occupational standard

Occupation summary

Process industry technicians are found in process manufacturing industries.

They run processes involving high hazard inputs to produce products that meet specifications. This may include chemical-based products, stabilised crude, ethane, butane, methane, and hydrogen. The working environment is highly controlled due to the use of high hazard chemicals. Technicians must follow high-level safety systems. Typically, production is on a large scale using a continuous process. This usually means operations are 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Technicians may be required to work shifts.

Technicians run and maintain the process or processes in line with operational parameters. They conduct quality assurance, resolving or escalating any issues, and complete records. Maintaining workplace safety by following health, safety and environmental risk and management systems is a vital part of the role. Preparing equipment for maintenance and bringing equipment back on line is also part of the role. They also support risk assessment, improvement activities, and audits.

On a daily basis, they work with other members of the process team. They also have contact with people in other teams for example, laboratory, maintenance, process engineering, supply chain, and warehouse. They may also have contact with external people such as, customers, service providers, and regulators.

They must ensure that the process and products meet quality specifications and are produced to schedule. They must work to external manufacturing regulations to protect the process, product, plant and equipment, company employees, and the environment. They must also consider sustainability. They may need to wear specialist PPE to protect the product or themselves. This may include, safety glasses, chemical resistant gloves, suits, and footwear, and breathing apparatus. They may work alone or part of a team. They work with minimal supervision, taking responsibility for the quality and accuracy of their work.

Typical job titles include:

Chemical process technician Chemical production technician Hydrogen production technician Green leaf Oil and gas process technician Petrochemical process technician Plant technician Process industry technician Process manufacturing technician Process technician Production technician

Entry requirements

Employers will set their own entry requirements. Typically, they require applicants to have GCSE science grade C or 4. An employer may require applicants to have a health screening to ensure suitability for working in some work environments.

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Run and maintain process industry plant and equipment in line with operational parameters. For example, pressures, flows, temperatures, levels, production targets, and specification.

K4 K13 K14 K16 K22 K25 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30 K31 K32 K33 K34 K35 K36 K37 K39

S5 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S15 S16 S20 S21 S35

B4

Duty 2 Maintain the work area following health, safety, environmental and risk management systems.

K3 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10

S3 S4 S6 S18

B1 B2

Duty 3 Resolve and report, or escalate, process, quality, health and safety, environment, and operating environment issues when operating out of normal parameters. For example, out of specification parameter.

K2 K3 K5 K8 K10 K12 K19 K20 K38 K40 K42 K43 K44

S17 S34 S36 S37 S38 S40 S41

B5

Duty 4 Undertake quality assurance processes.

K17 K18

Duty 5 Conduct dispatch of intermediate product or final processed product.

K4 K13 K14 K16 K22 K25 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30 K31 K32 K33 K34 K36 K37 K39

S5 S7 S8 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S20 S21 S35

B4

Duty 6 Conduct handover responsibilities - receiving information from or providing information to other shifts or maintenance teams.

K1 K2 K11 K12 K42 K43 K44

S1 S2 S33 S34 S36 S40 S41 S42 S43

B3

Duty 7 Complete process documentation - digital or paper based. For example, process and production records, traceability records, and quality assurance records.

K15 K40 K41 K42

S33 S40 S41

Duty 8 Conduct first line routine maintenance and testing of process and plant equipment.

Duty 9 Prepare plant for shutdown for example, for maintenance, overall, and decommissioning.

K4 K13 K14 K22 K23 K25 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30 K31 K32 K33 K34 K36 K37 K39

S5 S7 S8 S13 S15 S16 S19 S20 S21 S22 S23 S24 S25 S35

B4

Duty 10 Bring process industry equipment back on-line.

K4 K13 K14 K22 K24 K25 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30 K31 K32 K33 K34 K36 K37 K39

S5 S7 S8 S13 S15 S16 S20 S26 S27 S28 S29 S30 S31 S32 S35

B4

Duty 11 Participate in risk assessment activities.

K40 K42 K43 K44

S3 S33 S40 S41 S42 S43

B3

Duty 12 Participate in continuous improvement activities.

K1 K5 K10 K21 K40 K42 K43 K44

S17 S34 S39 S40 S41 S42 S43 S44

B3 B6

Duty 13 Support audits - internal or external. For example, supply information.

K40 K42 K43 K44

S33 S36 S37 S40 S41 S42 S43

B3

KSBs

Knowledge

K1: Science process manufacturing sector awareness: range of products, manufacturing environments, types of customers. Back to Duty

K2: Role and limits of responsibility. Escalation procedures. Impact of operators’ competence on product quality. Change control requirement. Back to Duty

K3: Health and safety regulations, standards, and guidance: Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (DSEAR), Electrical safety and compliance, Fire safety, Health and Safety at Work Act – responsibilities, incident and near miss reporting and investigation, Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER), Legionella, Lone working, Management of health and safety at work, Manual handling, Noise regulation, Permits to work, Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER), Safety signage and purpose, Slips trips and falls, The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR), Working in confined spaces, and Working at height. Back to Duty

K4: Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) regulation and impact on workplaces. Back to Duty

K5: Science process manufacturing safety hazards – risks they pose and their management: temperature, pressure, and vapours. Risk assessment and safe systems of work. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements. Back to Duty

K6: Emergency procedures. Back to Duty

K7: Health and safety management systems; key performance indicators (KPIs) and learning from incidents. Back to Duty

K8: Environmental hazards that can arise from process. Hierarchy of control. Back to Duty

K9: Environmental management systems standard. Environmental Protection Act. Environmental signage and notices. Back to Duty

K10: Principles of sustainability and circular economy. Resource (energy, water, and waste) efficiency and reuse of materials. Principles of control and management of emissions and waste. Back to Duty

K11: Planning, prioritising, and time management techniques. Back to Duty

K12: Continuous and batch techniques. Production requirements: product specification, processing specification, rate of production. Material safety data sheet, product labelling and product codes; the importance of identifying non-conforming materials and products. Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE). Stock control. Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP). Back to Duty

K13: Standard operating procedures (SOP) - what they are and why they are important. Back to Duty

K14: Standard operating conditions (SOC) - what they are and why they are important. Back to Duty

K15: Documentation requirements: documentation control, auditable records. Back to Duty

K16: Main factors influencing quality assurance in industrial process industries. Quality standards. Back to Duty

K17: Principles of laboratory quality procedures: calibration requirements for quality control, representative sampling, and common methods of analysis. Back to Duty

K18: How customer feedback can be used to assess quality performance. Purpose of audits. Non-conformance reports (NCR). Corrective Action Preventive Action (CAPA). Back to Duty

K19: Common faults and causes in processing: flow, blockages, instrumentation failures, seals and human factors. Back to Duty

K20: Problem solving and fault-finding techniques: root cause analysis, 5-Whys. Back to Duty

K21: Continuous improvement (CI) systems and techniques. Back to Duty

K22: Different types of maintenance activities: preventative and reactive. Back to Duty

K23: Requirements for shutting down and preparing for maintenance. Back to Duty

K24: Requirements for bringing equipment back from maintenance. Back to Duty

K25: Purpose and operation of process industry equipment. Back to Duty

K26: Process control systems and their constituent components. Back to Duty

K27: Uses of water in and around the plant. Types of water: raw, treated, demineralized; uses, differences, and composition. Water purification requirements and methods. Back to Duty

K28: Common process manufacturing principles: distillation, phase separation, crystallisation, and drying. Back to Duty

K29: The thermal and flow properties of solids, liquids, and gases. Back to Duty

K30: The structure of atoms, elements, and compounds - chemical symbols that represent them. Back to Duty

K31: Fundamental scientific laws to the construction and use of balanced chemical equations. Back to Duty

K32: Solutions, solubility, and solubility curves. Back to Duty

K33: The application and importance of electrochemical principles. Back to Duty

K34: The structure, classification, and properties of carbon compounds and polymers. Back to Duty

K35: The structure and properties of elements, mixtures, compounds, crystals, and alloys. Back to Duty

K36: The importance of chemical equilibrium and energy changes in reactions involved in manufacturing processes. Back to Duty

K37: Electrochemical principles - electrolysis and galvanic corrosion, their applications and importance. Back to Duty

K38: Numerical approximations and unit conversion tables. Areas, volumes, and pressure and flow rates calculations. Statistical data. Back to Duty

K39: Conventions for drawings and graphical information. Back to Duty

K40: Information and digital technology to support process industry operations. Cyber security requirements. Back to Duty

K41: General data protection regulation (GDPR). Back to Duty

K42: Written communication techniques. Technical report writing techniques. Back to Duty

K43: Verbal communication techniques. Back to Duty

K44: Principles of team working. Principles of equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace. Back to Duty

Skills

S1: Review instructions or information to understand the task. Back to Duty

S2: Plan tasks. Identify and organise resources with consideration for safety, environmental impact, quality, and cost. Back to Duty

S3: Identify hazards and risks in the workplace and personal safety and mitigation measures. Back to Duty

S4: Apply health, safety, and environmental procedures in compliance with regulations, standards, and guidance. Back to Duty

S5: Follow environment emergency procedures. For example, make area safe, evacuate. Back to Duty

S6: Apply sustainability principles for example, minimising waste. Back to Duty

S7: Apply standard operating procedures (SOPs). Back to Duty

S8: Check equipment. Back to Duty

S9: Select, check, and prepare raw materials for process for example, weighing, measuring, control and blending, conditioning, dissolving, and sanitisation. Back to Duty

S10: Set and adjust processing parameters such as temperature, pressure, speed or time, distance. Back to Duty

S11: Monitor process for example, take readings and conduct walk-arounds. Back to Duty

S12: Conduct the control of product streams to maintain specifics. Back to Duty

S13: Apply quality assurance procedures. For example, density checks, contaminant check, and take samples for laboratory testing. Back to Duty

S14: Apply intermediate or post-manufacturing procedure for example, labelling, packing, storage, visual inspection, discharge. Back to Duty

S15: Manage waste streams. Back to Duty

S16: Clean equipment for example, boil-outs, steam-outs, bake-outs, steam in place SIP, clean in place (CIP). Back to Duty

S17: Conduct calculations for example, conversations, tare weight, charge weights, yield calculations. Back to Duty

S18: Store tools and equipment. Back to Duty

S19: Identify equipment for handover. Back to Duty

S20: Apply signage and access restriction measures. Back to Duty

S21: Shut down the process and equipment. Back to Duty

S22: Isolate process and systems. Back to Duty

S23: Complete isolation checks. Back to Duty

S24: Empty equipment for example, drain, purge, vent, and de-pressure. Back to Duty

S25: Purge, fill, pressurise and leak test. Back to Duty

S26: Complete post maintenance equipment checks. Back to Duty

S27: Line-up equipment. Back to Duty

S28: Connect service connections such as water, electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic for chemical or petrochemical processing. Back to Duty

S29: De-isolate process, mechanical and electrical systems. Back to Duty

S30: Complete pre-start up checks. Back to Duty

S31: Start-up plant and equipment. Back to Duty

S32: Re-start process. Back to Duty

S33: Record or enter information - paper based or electronic. Back to Duty

S34: Interpret data for example, process data, quality control and test procedure data. Back to Duty

S35: Interpret drawings and graphs. Back to Duty

S36: Identify issues for example, defects, deviations, process variance, and maintenance requirements. Back to Duty

S37: Escalate issues outside limits of responsibility. Back to Duty

S38: Apply problem solving and fault-finding techniques. Back to Duty

S39: Apply continuous improvement techniques. Make a suggestion for improvement. Back to Duty

S40: Use information and digital technology for example, management information systems, human machine interfaces, word processing, spreadsheet, email, virtual learning platforms, document sharing platforms. Comply with cyber security requirements. Back to Duty

S41: Produce written documents for example, handover notes or emails, non-conformances, design change requests. Back to Duty

S42: Communicate with others verbally for example, colleagues and stakeholders. Back to Duty

S43: Apply team working principles. Back to Duty

S44: Plan how to meet personal development needs. Carry out and record planned and unplanned learning and development (CPD) activities. Back to Duty

Behaviours

B1: Prioritise health, safety, and environment. Back to Duty

B2: Consider sustainability when using resources and carrying out processes. Back to Duty

B3: Team-focus to meet work goals including support for equality, diversity and inclusion. Back to Duty

B4: Take responsibility for the quality of their own work. Back to Duty

B5: Respond and adapt to work demands. Back to Duty

B6: Committed to continued professional development. Back to Duty

Qualifications

English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Professional recognition

This standard aligns with the following professional recognition:

  • The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech). Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship and receipt of the apprenticeship certificate, individuals are eligible to apply for EngTech through a shortened application route. It will need to confirm that the EngTech requirements have been met. Individuals also need to be a member of a professional body licensed by the Engineering Council to be awarded this status. Further information is on the IChemE’s website.
Print EPA plan

End-point assessment plan

V1.0

Introduction and overview

This document explains the requirements for end-point assessment (EPA) for the process industry manufacturing technician apprenticeship. End-point assessment organisations (EPAOs) must follow this when designing and delivering the EPA.

Process industry manufacturing technician apprentices, their employers and training providers should read this document.

A full-time process industry manufacturing technician apprentice typically spends 36 months on-programme. The apprentice must spend at least 12 months on-programme and complete the required amount of off-the-job training in line with the apprenticeship funding rules.

The EPA should be completed within an EPA period lasting typically 3 months.

The apprentice must complete their training and meet the gateway requirements before starting their EPA. The EPA will assess occupational competence.

An approved EPAO must conduct the EPA for this apprenticeship. Employers must select an approved EPAO from the apprenticeship provider and assessment register (APAR).

This EPA has 3 assessment methods.

The grades available for each assessment method are below.

Assessment method 1 - observation with questions:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Assessment method 2 - interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Assessment method 3 - multiple-choice test:

  • fail
  • pass

The result from each assessment method is combined to decide the overall apprenticeship grade. The following grades are available for the apprenticeship:

  • fail
  • pass
  • merit
  • distinction

EPA summary table

On-programme - typically 36 months

The apprentice must:

  • complete training to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) outlined in this apprenticeship’s standard
  • complete training towards English and mathematics qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules

  • compile a portfolio of evidence

End-point assessment gateway

The apprentice’s employer must be content that the apprentice is occupationally competent.

The apprentice must:

  • confirm they are ready to take the EPA
  • have achieved English and mathematics qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules

For the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence, the apprentice must submit a portfolio of evidence.

Gateway evidence must be submitted to the EPAO, along with any organisation specific policies and procedures requested by the EPAO.

End-point assessment - typically 3 months

The grades available for each assessment method are below

Observation with questions:

  • fail

  • pass

  • distinction

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

  • fail

  • pass

  • distinction

Multiple-choice test:

  • fail

  • pass

Overall EPA and apprenticeship can be graded:

    • fail
    • pass
    • merit
    • distinction

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with:

  • The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech). Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship and receipt of the apprenticeship certificate, individuals are eligible to apply for EngTech through a shortened application route. It will need to confirm that the EngTech requirements have been met. Individuals also need to be a member of a professional body licensed by the Engineering Council to be awarded this status. Further information is on the IChemE’s website.

Re-sits and re-takes
  • re-take and re-sit grade cap: pass
  • re-sit timeframe: typically 2 months
  • re-take timeframe: typically 4 months

Duration of end-point assessment period

The EPA is taken in the EPA period. The EPA period starts when the EPAO confirms the gateway requirements have been met and is typically 3 months.

The EPAO should confirm the gateway requirements have been met and start the EPA as quickly as possible.

EPA gateway

The apprentice’s employer must be content that the apprentice is occupationally competent. That is, they are deemed to be working at or above the level set out in the apprenticeship standard and ready to undertake the EPA. The employer may take advice from the apprentice's training provider, but the employer must make the decision. The apprentice will then enter the gateway.

The apprentice must meet the gateway requirements before starting their EPA.

They must:

  • confirm they are ready to take the EPA
  • have achieved English and mathematics qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules

  • submit a portfolio of evidence for the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Portfolio of evidence requirements:

The apprentice must compile a portfolio of evidence during the on-programme period of the apprenticeship. It should only contain evidence related to the KSBs that will be assessed by this assessment method. It will typically contain 10 discrete pieces of evidence. Evidence must be mapped against the KSBs. Evidence may be used to demonstrate more than one KSB; a qualitative as opposed to quantitative approach is suggested.

Evidence sources may include:

  • workplace documentation and records, for example: process, quality assurance
  • workplace policies and procedures
  • witness statements
  • annotated photographs
  • video clips with a maximum total duration of 10 minutes; the apprentice must be in view and identifiable

This is not a definitive list; other evidence sources can be included.

The portfolio of evidence should not include reflective accounts or any methods of self-assessment. Any employer contributions should focus on direct observation of performance for example, witness statements rather than opinions. The evidence provided should be valid and attributable to the apprentice; the portfolio of evidence should contain a statement from the employer and apprentice confirming this.

The EPAO should not assess the portfolio of evidence directly as it underpins the interview. The independent assessor should review the portfolio of evidence to prepare questions for the interview. They are not required to provide feedback after this review.

Gateway evidence must be submitted to the EPAO, along with any organisation specific policies and procedures requested by the EPAO.

Order of assessment methods

The assessment methods can be delivered in any order.

The result of one assessment method does not need to be known before starting the next.

Observation with questions

Overview

In the observation with questions, an independent assessor observes the apprentice in their workplace and asks questions. The apprentice completes their day-to-day duties under normal working conditions. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • this is a practical role
  • it can assess KSBs holistically
  • it should give employers assurance about an apprentice’s competence as it takes place in a real work setting
  • the familiar environment should allow the apprentice to perform at their best
  • it is cost effective, tasks completed during the observation should contribute to workplace productivity and it makes use of the employer’s resources and equipment

Delivery

The observation with questions must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the observation with questions.

The independent assessor must only observe one apprentice at a time to ensure quality and rigour. They must be as unobtrusive as possible.

The EPAO must give the apprentice 2 weeks' notice of the observation with questions.

The observation must take 3 hours.

The independent assessor can increase the time of the observation with questions by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to complete a task or respond to a question if necessary.

The observation may be split into discrete sections held on the same working day.

The EPAO must manage invigilation of the apprentice during the assessment, to maintain security of the EPA, in line with their malpractice policy. This includes breaks and moving between locations.

The independent assessor must explain to the apprentice the format and timescales of the observation with questions before it starts. This does not count towards the assessment time.

The independent assessor should observe the apprentice conducting the following during the observation:

  • organise work
  • maintain the work area
  • run and maintain process
  • conduct process industry quality assurance
  • complete process documentation
  • communicate with others

The following KSBs may be assessed using simulation if they do not occur naturally:

  • K16: Main factors influencing quality assurance in industrial process industries.
  • S13: Apply quality assurance procedures. For example, density checks, contaminant check, and take samples for laboratory testing.
  • S20: Apply signage and access restriction measures.
  • B4: Take responsibility for the quality of their own work.

The EPAO must make arrangements for this with the employer if required.

These activities provide the apprentice with the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

The independent assessor must ask questions. Questioning can occur both during and after the observation.

The purpose of the questions is to assess the level of competence against the grading descriptors.

The time for questioning is included in the overall assessment time. The independent assessor must ask at least 5 questions. To remain as unobtrusive as possible, the independent assessor should ask questions during natural stops between tasks and after completion of work rather than disrupting the apprentice’s flow. The independent assessor must use the questions from the EPAO’s question bank or create their own questions in line with the EPAO’s training. Follow-up questions are allowed where clarification is required.

The independent assessor must ask questions about KSBs that were not observed to gather assessment evidence. These questions are in addition to the above set number of questions for the observation with questions and should be kept to a minimum.

The independent assessor must make the grading decision. The independent assessor must assess the observation and responses to questions holistically when deciding the grade.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the KSBs observed
  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • the KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved

Assessment location

The observation with questions must take place in the apprentice’s normal place of work for example, their employer’s premises or a customer’s premises. Equipment and resources needed for the observation must be provided by the employer and be in good and safe working condition.

Questioning that occurs after the observation should take place in a suitable environment, for example a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO must maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.  

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the observation with questions:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Overview

In the interview, an independent assessor asks the apprentice questions. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • it assesses KSBs holistically and objectively
  • it allows for the assessment of KSBs that do not occur on a predictable or regular basis
  • it allows for the assessment of responses where there are a range of potential answers
  • it can be conducted remotely, potentially reducing cost

Delivery

The interview must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the interview.

The purpose of the independent assessor's questions is to assess the apprentice against the following themes:

  • role and responsibilities
  • emergency procedures
  • sustainability
  • process industry operations
  • shutting down for maintenance
  • bringing back from maintenance
  • problem solving and fault finding
  • continuous improvement
  • written communication
  • information and digital technology
  • teamwork
  • continued professional development

The EPAO must give an apprentice 2 weeks' notice of the interview.

The independent assessor must have at least 2 weeks to review the supporting documentation.

The apprentice must have access to their portfolio of evidence during the interview.

The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence however, the portfolio of evidence is not directly assessed.

The interview must last for 60 minutes. The independent assessor can increase the time of the interview by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to respond to a question if necessary.

The independent assessor must ask at least 8 questions. The independent assessor must use the questions from the EPAO’s question bank or create their own questions in line with the EPAO’s training. Follow-up questions are allowed where clarification is required.

The independent assessor must make the grading decision.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • the KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved 

Assessment location

The interview must take place in a suitable venue selected by the EPAO for example, the EPAO’s or employer’s premises.

The interview can be conducted by video conferencing. The EPAO must have processes in place to verify the identity of the apprentice and ensure the apprentice is not being aided.

The interview should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO must maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Multiple-choice test

Overview

In the multiple-choice test, the apprentice answers questions in a controlled and invigilated environment. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the knowledge mapped to this assessment method.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • it can assess knowledge
  • it is easy to administer
  • it can be conducted remotely and administered to multiple apprentices at the same time, potentially reducing cost

Delivery


The multiple-choice test must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the knowledge mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

The test can be computer or paper based.

The test will consist of 40 multiple-choice questions.

Multiple-choice questions must have four options, including one correct answer.

The apprentice must be given at least 2 weeks’ notice of the date and time of the test.

Test administration

The apprentice must have 60 minutes to complete the test.

The test is closed book which means that the apprentice cannot refer to reference books or materials whilst taking the test.

The following equipment is allowed to be used during the test:

  • a scientific calculator

The test must be taken in the presence of an invigilator who is the responsibility of the EPAO. The EPAO must have an invigilation policy setting out how the test must be conducted. It must state the ratio of apprentices to invigilators for the setting and allow the test to take place in a secure way.

The EPAO must verify the apprentice’s identity and ensure invigilation of the apprentice for example, with 360-degree cameras and screen sharing facilities.

The EPAO is responsible for the security of the test including the arrangements for on-line testing. The EPAO must ensure that their security arrangements maintain the validity and reliability of the test.

Marking

The test must be marked by an independent assessor or marker employed by the EPAO. They must follow a marking scheme produced by the EPAO. Marking by computer is allowed where question types support this.

A correct answer gets 1 mark.

Any incorrect or missing answers get zero marks.

The EPAO is responsible for overseeing the marking of the test.

Assessment location

The apprentice must take the test in a suitably controlled and invigilated environment that is a quiet room, free from distractions and influence. The EPAO must check the venue is suitable.

The test could take place remotely if the appropriate technology and systems are in place to prevent malpractice.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.    

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.  

The EPAO must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the test:

  • assessment materials for independent assessors and markers which includes:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • test specification
    • sample test and mark schemes
    • live tests and mark schemes
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Grading

Observation with questions

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme
KSBs
Pass
The apprentice must demonstrate all of the pass descriptors for the core and their option
Distinction
The apprentice must demonstrate all of the pass and distinction descriptors for the core and their option
Organise work
K11 S1 S2

Reviews instructions or information to understand the task's requirements. (S1)

Plans tasks and identifies and organises resources required to complete it using planning, prioritising, and time management techniques with consideration for safety, environmental impact, quality, and cost. (K11, S2)

The balance of safety, environmental impact, quality, and cost factors in their planning decisions is justified. (K11, S2)

Maintain the work area
K5 K8 S3 S4 S18 B1

Identifies health and safety and environmental hazards and risks in the workplace, and personal safety and mitigation measures with consideration of hierarchy of control.

Prioritises and applies health, safety, and environmental procedures in compliance with regulations, standards and guidance mitigating against risks including use of personal protective equipment.

Stores tools and equipment safety in line with company procedures.

(K5, K8, S3, S4, S18, B1)

Explains the importance of applying health, safety and environmental procedures in their work. (K5, K8, S4)

Run and maintain process
K14 K25 K26 S8 S10 S11 S20

Checks equipment in line with company procedures.

Monitors process or processes and sets and adjusts processing parameters on process industry equipment, using process control system and its constituent components, to meet standard operating conditions in line with standard operating procedures.

(K14, K25, K26, S8, S10, S11)

Applies signage and access restriction measures in line with task requirements and company procedures. (S20)

Justifies their approach for monitoring and setting and adjusting process parameters in terms of effectiveness or efficiencies of practice and the impact of their actions on others. (S10, S11)

 

Conduct process industry quality assurance
K16 S13 B4

Takes responsibility for the quality of their own work by applying quality assurance procedures in line with quality standards that take account of the main factors influencing quality assurance in industrial process industries. (K16, S13, B4)

Explains the importance of applying quality assurance procedures to support quality standards. (K16, S13)

Complete process documentation
K15 S33

Records or enters data for work tasks - paper based or electronic - in line with company procedures for documentation control and auditable records. (K15, S33)

None

Communicate with others
K43 S42

Uses verbal communication techniques suitable for the context. (K43, S42)

None

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme
KSBs
Pass
The apprentice must demonstrate all of the pass descriptors for the core and their option
Distinction
The apprentice must demonstrate all of the pass and distinction descriptors for the core and their option
Role and responsibilities
K2 S37 B5

Describes their role as a science process manufacturing technician including their limits of responsibility, how they escalate issues, and how they respond and adapt to work demands in line with organisational requirements.

Outlines the impact of an operator’s competence on product quality.

Outlines change control requirements and why they are important.

(K2, S37, B5)

None

Emergency procedures
K6 S5

Describes what they would do in an environmental emergency situation in line with company procedures. (K6, S5)

None

Sustainability
K10 S6 B2

Describes how they consider and apply the principles of sustainability and the circular economy when using resources and carrying out processes including resource efficiency, reuse of materials, and recycling and control of emissions and waste. (K10, S6, B2)

Explains how they have supported the development or implementation of sustainability practice in the workplace beyond their role for example, through promoting good practice to others, identifying improvement to practice. (S6, B2)

Process industry operations
K13 S7 S9 S12 S14 S15 S16

Describes how they select, check, and prepare raw materials for process in line with task requirements and SOPs.

Describes how they conduct the control of product streams to maintain specifics in line with task requirements and SOPs.

Describes how they manage waste streams in line with SOPs.

Describes how they clean equipment in line with SOPs.

Describes how they apply intermediate or post-manufacturing procedures in line with task requirements.

(K13, S7, S9, S12, S14, S15, S16)

Evaluates the impact of non-conformity in applying SOPs within role and wider organisation. (K13, S7)

Shutting down for maintenance
K23 S19 S21 S22 S23 S24

Describes how they prepare for shutting down for maintenance in line with their company's procedures, including:

  • identifying equipment for handover
  • shutting down the process and equipment
  • isolating process and systems
  • completing isolation checks
  • emptying equipment

(K23, S19, S21, S22, S23, S24)

None

Bringing back from maintenance
K24 S25 S26 S27 S28 S29 S30 S31 S32

Describes how they bring equipment back from maintenance in line with their company's procedures including:

  • purging, filling, pressurising and leak testing
  • completing post maintenance equipment checks
  • lining-up equipment
  • connecting service connections
  • de-isolating process, mechanical and electrical systems
  • completing pre-start up checks
  • starting-up plant and equipment
  • re-starting process 

(K24, S25, S26, S27, S28, S29, S30, S31, S32)

None

Problem solving and fault finding
K19 K20 S36 S38

Describes how they identify issues and apply problem solving and fault-finding techniques to establish the root cause of common faults in processing including flow, blockages, instrumentation failures, seals, and human factors. (K19, K20, S36, S38)

Assesses the value of specific fault-finding and problem solving techniques for different issues. (K19, K20, S36, S38)

Continuous improvement
K21 S39

Describes how they have applied continuous improvement (CI) techniques and a made a viable suggestion for improvement in their work to support CI systems. (K21, S39)

Justifies the potential impact of the improvement suggestion with consideration to benefits and any potential risks. (K21, S39)

Written communication
K42 S41

Describes how they apply written communication and report writing techniques to produce communications in their work suitable for context. (K42, S41)

None

Information and digital technology
K40 S40

Describes how they use information and digital technology in work tasks in compliance with cyber security requirements. (K40, S40)

None

Teamwork
K44 S43 B3

Describes how they apply team working principles to meet work goals in line with their company's policy on equality, diversity, and inclusion. (K44, S43, B3)

Justifies how their team focus approach helped to achieve a positive outcome in a team activity. (K44, S43, B3)

Continued professional development
S44 B6

Describes the planned and unplanned learning and development (CPD) activities they have carried out and recorded to meet personal development needs, showing a commitment to future CPD. (S44, B6)

None

Multiple-choice test

Grade Minimum marks required Maximum marks required
Fail 0 27
Pass 28 40

Overall EPA grading

Performance in the EPA determines the overall grade of:

  • fail

  • pass

  • merit

  • distinction

An independent assessor must individually grade the observation with questions and interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence in line with this EPA plan.

The EPAO must combine the individual assessment method grades to determine the overall EPA grade.

If the apprentice fails one assessment method or more, they will be awarded an overall fail.

To achieve an overall pass, the apprentice must achieve at least a pass in all the assessment methods. To achieve an overall EPA merit, the apprentice must achieve a distinction in one assessment method (observation with questions, or interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence), and a pass in the other two assessment methods. To achieve an overall EPA distinction, the apprentice must achieve a distinction in the observation with questions, a distinction in the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence, and a pass in the multiple-choice test.

Grades from individual assessment methods must be combined in the following way to determine the grade of the EPA overall.

Observation with questions Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence Multiple-choice test Overall Grading
Any grade Any grade Fail Fail
Any grade Fail Any grade Fail
Fail Any grade Any grade Fail
Pass Pass Pass Pass
Distinction Pass Pass Merit
Pass Distinction Pass Merit
Distinction Distinction Pass Distinction

Re-sits and re-takes

If the apprentice fails one assessment method or more, they can take a re-sit or a re-take at their employer’s discretion. The apprentice’s employer needs to agree that a re-sit or re-take is appropriate. A re-sit does not need further learning, whereas a re-take does. The apprentice should have a supportive action plan to prepare for a re-sit or a re-take.

The employer and the EPAO should agree the timescale for a re-sit or re-take. A re-sit is typically taken within 2 months of the EPA outcome notification. The timescale for a re-take is dependent on how much re-training is required and is typically taken within 4 months of the EPA outcome notification.

Failed assessment methods must be re-sat or re-taken within a 6-month period from the EPA outcome notification, otherwise the entire EPA will need to be re-sat or re-taken in full.

Re-sits and re-takes are not offered to an apprentice wishing to move from pass to a higher grade.

The apprentice will get a maximum EPA grade of if pass they need to re-sit or re-take one or more assessment methods, unless the EPAO determines there are exceptional circumstances.

Roles and responsibilities

Roles Responsibilities

Apprentice

As a minimum, the apprentice should:

  • complete on-programme training to meet the KSBs as outlined in the apprenticeship standard for a minimum of 12 months
  • complete the required amount of off-the-job training specified by the apprenticeship funding rules and as arranged by the employer and training provider
  • understand the purpose and importance of EPA
  • prepare for and undertake the EPA including meeting all gateway requirements

Employer

As a minimum, the apprentice's employer must:

  • select the EPAO and training provider
  • work with the training provider, where applicable, to support the apprentice in the workplace and to provide the opportunities for the apprentice to develop the KSBs
  • arrange and support off-the-job training to be undertaken by the apprentice 
  • decide when the apprentice is working at or above the apprenticeship standard and is ready for EPA
  • ensure the apprentice is prepared for the EPA
  • ensure that all supporting evidence required at the gateway is submitted in line with this EPA plan
  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA in a timely manner, including who, when, where
  • provide the EPAO with access to any employer-specific documentation as required for example, company policies
  • ensure that the EPA is scheduled with the EPAO for a date and time which allows appropriate opportunity for the apprentice to meet the KSBs
  • ensure the apprentice is given sufficient time away from regular duties to prepare for, and complete the EPA
  • ensure that any required supervision during the EPA period, as stated within this EPA plan, is in place
  • ensure the apprentice has access to the resources used to fulfil their role and carry out the EPA for workplace based assessments
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • pass the certificate to the apprentice upon receipt

EPAO

As a minimum, the EPAO must:

  • conform to the requirements of this EPA plan and deliver its requirements in a timely manner
  • conform to the requirements of the apprenticeship provider and assessment register
  • conform to the requirements of the external quality assurance provider (EQAP)
  • understand the apprenticeship including the occupational standard and EPA plan 
  • make all necessary contractual arrangements including agreeing the price of the EPA
  • develop and produce assessment materials including specifications and marking materials, for example mark schemes, practice materials, training material
  • maintain and apply a policy for the declaration and management of conflict of interests and independence. This must ensure, as a minimum, there is no personal benefit or detriment for those delivering the EPA or from the result of an assessment. It must cover:
    • apprentices
    • employers
    • independent assessors
    • any other roles involved in delivery or grading of the EPA
  • have quality assurance systems and procedures that ensure fair, reliable and consistent assessment and maintain records of internal quality assurance (IQA) activity for external quality assurance (EQA) purposes
  • appoint independent, competent, and suitably qualified assessors in line with the requirements of this EPA plan
  • appoint administrators, invigilators and any other roles where required to facilitate the EPA
  • deliver induction, initial and on-going training for all their independent assessors and any other roles involved in the delivery or grading of the EPA as specified within this EPA plan. This should include how to record the rationale and evidence for grading decisions where required 
  • conduct standardisation with all their independent assessors before allowing them to deliver an EPA, when the EPA is updated, and at least once a year 
  • conduct moderation across all of their independent assessors decisions once EPAs have started according to a sampling plan, with associated risk rating of independent assessors 
  • monitor the performance of all their independent assessors and provide additional training where necessary 
  • develop and provide assessment recording documentation to ensure a clear and auditable process is in place for providing assessment decisions and feedback to all relevant stakeholders 
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the apprenticeship
  • arrange for the EPA to take place in a timely manner, in consultation with the employer
  • provide information, advice, and guidance documentation to enable apprentices, employers and training providers to prepare for the EPA
  • confirm the gateway requirements have been met before they start the EPA for an apprentice
  • arrange a suitable venue for the EPA
  • maintain the security of the EPA including, but not limited to, verifying the identity of the apprentice, invigilation and security of materials
  • where the EPA plan permits assessment away from the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary
  • confirm overall grade awarded
  • maintain and apply a policy for conducting appeals

Independent assessor

As a minimum, an independent assessor must: 

  • be independent, with no conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider, specifically, they must not receive a personal benefit or detriment from the result of the assessment
  • have, maintain and be able to evidence up-to-date knowledge and expertise of the occupation
  • have the competence to assess the EPA and meet the requirements of the IQA section of this EPA plan
  • understand the apprenticeship’s occupational standard and EPA plan
  • attend induction and standardisation events before they conduct an EPA for the first time, when the EPA is updated, and at least once a year
  • use language in the delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the apprenticeship
  • work with other personnel, where used, in the preparation and delivery of assessment methods
  • conduct the EPA to assess the apprentice against the KSBs and in line with the EPA plan
  • make final grading decisions in line with this EPA plan
  • record and report assessment outcome decisions
  • comply with the IQA requirements of the EPAO
  • comply with external quality assurance (EQA) requirements

Training provider

As a minimum, the training provider must: 

  • conform to the requirements of the apprenticeship provider and assessment register
  • ensure procedures are in place to mitigate against any conflict of interest
  • work with the employer and support the apprentice during the off-the-job training to provide the opportunities to develop the KSBs as outlined in the occupational standard
  • deliver training to the apprentice as outlined in their apprenticeship agreement
  • monitor the apprentice’s progress during any training provider led on-programme learning
  • ensure the apprentice is prepared for the EPA
  • advise the employer, upon request, on the apprentice’s readiness for EPA
  • ensure that all supporting evidence required at the gateway is submitted in line with this EPA plan
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA

Marker

As a minimum, the marker must:

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO 
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider
  • mark test answers in line with the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures 

Invigilator

As a minimum, the invigilator must: 

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO 
  • not invigilate an assessment, solely, if they have delivered the assessed content to the apprentice 
  • invigilate and supervise the apprentice during tests and in breaks during assessment methods to prevent malpractice in line with the EPAO’s invigilation procedures 

Reasonable adjustments

The EPAO must have reasonable adjustments arrangements for the EPA.

This should include:

  • how an apprentice qualifies for a reasonable adjustment
  • what reasonable adjustments may be made

Adjustments must maintain the validity, reliability and integrity of the EPA as outlined in this EPA plan.

Special considerations

The EPAO must have special consideration arrangements for the EPA.

This should include:

  • how an apprentice qualifies for a special consideration
  • what special considerations will be given

Special considerations must maintain the validity, reliability and integrity of the EPA as outlined in this EPA plan.

Internal quality assurance

Internal quality assurance refers to the strategies, policies and procedures that an EPAO must have in place to ensure valid, consistent and reliable EPA decisions.

EPAOs for this EPA must adhere to the requirements within the roles and responsibilities table.

They must also appoint independent assessors who:

  • have recent relevant experience of the occupation or sector to at least occupational level 3 gained in the last 3 years or significant experience of the occupation or sector

Value for money

Affordability of the EPA will be aided by using at least some of the following:

  • completing applicable assessment methods online, for example computer-based assessment
  • utilising digital remote platforms to conduct applicable assessment methods
  • assessing multiple apprentices simultaneously where the assessment method permits this
  • using the employer’s premises
  • conducting assessment methods on the same day

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with:

  • The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech). Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship and receipt of the apprenticeship certificate, individuals are eligible to apply for EngTech through a shortened application route. It will need to confirm that the EngTech requirements have been met. Individuals also need to be a member of a professional body licensed by the Engineering Council to be awarded this status. Further information is on the IChemE’s website.

KSB mapping table

Knowledge Assessment methods
K1

Science process manufacturing sector awareness: range of products, manufacturing environments, types of customers.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K2

Role and limits of responsibility. Escalation procedures. Impact of operators’ competence on product quality. Change control requirement.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K3

Health and safety regulations, standards, and guidance: Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (DSEAR), Electrical safety and compliance, Fire safety, Health and Safety at Work Act – responsibilities, incident and near miss reporting and investigation, Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER), Legionella, Lone working, Management of health and safety at work, Manual handling, Noise regulation, Permits to work, Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER), Safety signage and purpose, Slips trips and falls, The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR), Working in confined spaces, and Working at height.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K4

Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) regulation and impact on workplaces.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K5

Science process manufacturing safety hazards – risks they pose and their management: temperature, pressure, and vapours. Risk assessment and safe systems of work. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K6

Emergency procedures.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K7

Health and safety management systems; key performance indicators (KPIs) and learning from incidents.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K8

Environmental hazards that can arise from process. Hierarchy of control.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K9

Environmental management systems standard. Environmental Protection Act. Environmental signage and notices.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K10

Principles of sustainability and circular economy. Resource (energy, water, and waste) efficiency and reuse of materials. Principles of control and management of emissions and waste.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K11

Planning, prioritising, and time management techniques.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K12

Continuous and batch techniques. Production requirements: product specification, processing specification, rate of production. Material safety data sheet, product labelling and product codes; the importance of identifying non-conforming materials and products. Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE). Stock control. Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP).

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K13

Standard operating procedures (SOP) - what they are and why they are important.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K14

Standard operating conditions (SOC) - what they are and why they are important.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K15

Documentation requirements: documentation control, auditable records.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K16

Main factors influencing quality assurance in industrial process industries. Quality standards.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K17

Principles of laboratory quality procedures: calibration requirements for quality control, representative sampling, and common methods of analysis.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K18

How customer feedback can be used to assess quality performance. Purpose of audits. Non-conformance reports (NCR). Corrective Action Preventive Action (CAPA).

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K19

Common faults and causes in processing: flow, blockages, instrumentation failures, seals and human factors.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K20

Problem solving and fault-finding techniques: root cause analysis, 5-Whys.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K21

Continuous improvement (CI) systems and techniques.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K22

Different types of maintenance activities: preventative and reactive.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K23

Requirements for shutting down and preparing for maintenance.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K24

Requirements for bringing equipment back from maintenance.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K25

Purpose and operation of process industry equipment.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K26

Process control systems and their constituent components.

Back to Grading
Observation with questions
K27

Uses of water in and around the plant. Types of water: raw, treated, demineralized; uses, differences, and composition. Water purification requirements and methods.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K28

Common process manufacturing principles: distillation, phase separation, crystallisation, and drying.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K29

The thermal and flow properties of solids, liquids, and gases.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K30

The structure of atoms, elements, and compounds - chemical symbols that represent them.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K31

Fundamental scientific laws to the construction and use of balanced chemical equations.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K32

Solutions, solubility, and solubility curves.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K33

The application and importance of electrochemical principles.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K34

The structure, classification, and properties of carbon compounds and polymers.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K35

The structure and properties of elements, mixtures, compounds, crystals, and alloys.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K36

The importance of chemical equilibrium and energy changes in reactions involved in manufacturing processes.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K37

Electrochemical principles - electrolysis and galvanic corrosion, their applications and importance.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K38

Numerical approximations and unit conversion tables. Areas, volumes, and pressure and flow rates calculations. Statistical data.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K39

Conventions for drawings and graphical information.

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K40

Information and digital technology to support process industry operations. Cyber security requirements.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K41

General data protection regulation (GDPR).

Back to Grading
Multiple-choice test
K42

Written communication techniques. Technical report writing techniques.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K43

Verbal communication techniques.

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Observation with questions
K44

Principles of team working. Principles of equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
Skill Assessment methods
S1

Review instructions or information to understand the task.

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Observation with questions
S2

Plan tasks. Identify and organise resources with consideration for safety, environmental impact, quality, and cost.

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Observation with questions
S3

Identify hazards and risks in the workplace and personal safety and mitigation measures.

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Observation with questions
S4

Apply health, safety, and environmental procedures in compliance with regulations, standards, and guidance.

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Observation with questions
S5

Follow environment emergency procedures. For example, make area safe, evacuate.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S6

Apply sustainability principles for example, minimising waste.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S7

Apply standard operating procedures (SOPs).

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S8

Check equipment.

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Observation with questions
S9

Select, check, and prepare raw materials for process for example, weighing, measuring, control and blending, conditioning, dissolving, and sanitisation.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S10

Set and adjust processing parameters such as temperature, pressure, speed or time, distance.

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Observation with questions
S11

Monitor process for example, take readings and conduct walk-arounds.

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Observation with questions
S12

Conduct the control of product streams to maintain specifics.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S13

Apply quality assurance procedures. For example, density checks, contaminant check, and take samples for laboratory testing.

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Observation with questions
S14

Apply intermediate or post-manufacturing procedure for example, labelling, packing, storage, visual inspection, discharge.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S15

Manage waste streams.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S16

Clean equipment for example, boil-outs, steam-outs, bake-outs, steam in place SIP, clean in place (CIP).

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S17

Conduct calculations for example, conversations, tare weight, charge weights, yield calculations.

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Multiple-choice test
S18

Store tools and equipment.

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Observation with questions
S19

Identify equipment for handover.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S20

Apply signage and access restriction measures.

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Observation with questions
S21

Shut down the process and equipment.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S22

Isolate process and systems.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S23

Complete isolation checks.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S24

Empty equipment for example, drain, purge, vent, and de-pressure.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S25

Purge, fill, pressurise and leak test.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S26

Complete post maintenance equipment checks.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S27

Line-up equipment.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S28

Connect service connections such as water, electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic for chemical or petrochemical processing.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S29

De-isolate process, mechanical and electrical systems.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S30

Complete pre-start up checks.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S31

Start-up plant and equipment.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S32

Re-start process.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S33

Record or enter information - paper based or electronic.

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Observation with questions
S34

Interpret data for example, process data, quality control and test procedure data.

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Multiple-choice test
S35

Interpret drawings and graphs.

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Multiple-choice test
S36

Identify issues for example, defects, deviations, process variance, and maintenance requirements.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S37

Escalate issues outside limits of responsibility.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S38

Apply problem solving and fault-finding techniques.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S39

Apply continuous improvement techniques. Make a suggestion for improvement.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S40

Use information and digital technology for example, management information systems, human machine interfaces, word processing, spreadsheet, email, virtual learning platforms, document sharing platforms. Comply with cyber security requirements.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S41

Produce written documents for example, handover notes or emails, non-conformances, design change requests.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S42

Communicate with others verbally for example, colleagues and stakeholders.

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Observation with questions
S43

Apply team working principles.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S44

Plan how to meet personal development needs. Carry out and record planned and unplanned learning and development (CPD) activities.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
Behaviour Assessment methods
B1

Prioritise health, safety, and environment.

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Observation with questions
B2

Consider sustainability when using resources and carrying out processes.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B3

Team-focus to meet work goals including support for equality, diversity and inclusion.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B4

Take responsibility for the quality of their own work.

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Observation with questions
B5

Respond and adapt to work demands.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B6

Committed to continued professional development.

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Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Mapping of KSBs to grade themes

Observation with questions

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Organise work
K11
S1 S2

Planning, prioritising, and time management techniques. (K11)

Review instructions or information to understand the task. (S1)

Plan tasks. Identify and organise resources with consideration for safety, environmental impact, quality, and cost. (S2)

None

Maintain the work area
K5 K8
S3 S4 S18
B1

Science process manufacturing safety hazards – risks they pose and their management: temperature, pressure, and vapours. Risk assessment and safe systems of work. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements. (K5)

Environmental hazards that can arise from process. Hierarchy of control. (K8)

Identify hazards and risks in the workplace and personal safety and mitigation measures. (S3)

Apply health, safety, and environmental procedures in compliance with regulations, standards, and guidance. (S4)

Store tools and equipment. (S18)

Prioritise health, safety, and environment. (B1)

Run and maintain process
K14 K25 K26
S8 S10 S11 S20

Standard operating conditions (SOC) - what they are and why they are important. (K14)

Purpose and operation of process industry equipment. (K25)

Process control systems and their constituent components. (K26)

Check equipment. (S8)

Set and adjust processing parameters such as temperature, pressure, speed or time, distance. (S10)

Monitor process for example, take readings and conduct walk-arounds. (S11)

Apply signage and access restriction measures. (S20)

None

Conduct process industry quality assurance
K16
S13
B4

Main factors influencing quality assurance in industrial process industries. Quality standards. (K16)

Apply quality assurance procedures. For example, density checks, contaminant check, and take samples for laboratory testing. (S13)

Take responsibility for the quality of their own work. (B4)

Complete process documentation
K15
S33

Documentation requirements: documentation control, auditable records. (K15)

Record or enter information - paper based or electronic. (S33)

None

Communicate with others
K43
S42

Verbal communication techniques. (K43)

Communicate with others verbally for example, colleagues and stakeholders. (S42)

None

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Role and responsibilities
K2
S37
B5

Role and limits of responsibility. Escalation procedures. Impact of operators’ competence on product quality. Change control requirement. (K2)

Escalate issues outside limits of responsibility. (S37)

Respond and adapt to work demands. (B5)

Emergency procedures
K6
S5

Emergency procedures. (K6)

Follow environment emergency procedures. For example, make area safe, evacuate. (S5)

None

Sustainability
K10
S6
B2

Principles of sustainability and circular economy. Resource (energy, water, and waste) efficiency and reuse of materials. Principles of control and management of emissions and waste. (K10)

Apply sustainability principles for example, minimising waste. (S6)

Consider sustainability when using resources and carrying out processes. (B2)

Process industry operations
K13
S7 S9 S12 S14 S15 S16

Standard operating procedures (SOP) - what they are and why they are important. (K13)

Apply standard operating procedures (SOPs). (S7)

Select, check, and prepare raw materials for process for example, weighing, measuring, control and blending, conditioning, dissolving, and sanitisation. (S9)

Conduct the control of product streams to maintain specifics. (S12)

Apply intermediate or post-manufacturing procedure for example, labelling, packing, storage, visual inspection, discharge. (S14)

Manage waste streams. (S15)

Clean equipment for example, boil-outs, steam-outs, bake-outs, steam in place SIP, clean in place (CIP). (S16)

None

Shutting down for maintenance
K23
S19 S21 S22 S23 S24

Requirements for shutting down and preparing for maintenance. (K23)

Identify equipment for handover. (S19)

Shut down the process and equipment. (S21)

Isolate process and systems. (S22)

Complete isolation checks. (S23)

Empty equipment for example, drain, purge, vent, and de-pressure. (S24)

None

Bringing back from maintenance
K24
S25 S26 S27 S28 S29 S30 S31 S32

Requirements for bringing equipment back from maintenance. (K24)

Purge, fill, pressurise and leak test. (S25)

Complete post maintenance equipment checks. (S26)

Line-up equipment. (S27)

Connect service connections such as water, electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic for chemical or petrochemical processing. (S28)

De-isolate process, mechanical and electrical systems. (S29)

Complete pre-start up checks. (S30)

Start-up plant and equipment. (S31)

Re-start process. (S32)

None

Problem solving and fault finding
K19 K20
S36 S38

Common faults and causes in processing: flow, blockages, instrumentation failures, seals and human factors. (K19)

Problem solving and fault-finding techniques: root cause analysis, 5-Whys. (K20)

Identify issues for example, defects, deviations, process variance, and maintenance requirements. (S36)

Apply problem solving and fault-finding techniques. (S38)

None

Continuous improvement
K21
S39

Continuous improvement (CI) systems and techniques. (K21)

Apply continuous improvement techniques. Make a suggestion for improvement. (S39)

None

Written communication
K42
S41

Written communication techniques. Technical report writing techniques. (K42)

Produce written documents for example, handover notes or emails, non-conformances, design change requests. (S41)

None

Information and digital technology
K40
S40

Information and digital technology to support process industry operations. Cyber security requirements. (K40)

Use information and digital technology for example, management information systems, human machine interfaces, word processing, spreadsheet, email, virtual learning platforms, document sharing platforms. Comply with cyber security requirements. (S40)

None

Teamwork
K44
S43
B3

Principles of team working. Principles of equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace. (K44)

Apply team working principles. (S43)

Team-focus to meet work goals including support for equality, diversity and inclusion. (B3)

Continued professional development

S44
B6

None

Plan how to meet personal development needs. Carry out and record planned and unplanned learning and development (CPD) activities. (S44)

Committed to continued professional development. (B6)

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Employers involved in creating the standard: CPI, Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies, Sterling PSL, Seqens, Essar Oil, Alpek Polyester, GSK, Solenis, Conoco Philips, Seqirus UK Limited, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.0 Approved for delivery 30/11/2023 Not set Not set

Crown copyright © 2024. You may re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. Visit www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence

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