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Rail infrastructure operator

Key information

  1. Status: Approved for delivery
  2. Reference: ST0419
  3. Version: 1.1
  4. Level: 3
  5. Typical duration to gateway: 18 months
  6. Typical EPA period: 3 months
  7. Maximum funding: £15000
  8. Route: Transport and logistics
  9. Date updated: 21/09/2022
  10. Approved for delivery: 17 August 2017
  11. Lars code: 188
  12. EQA provider: National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR)
Print apprenticeship summary

Apprenticeship summary

Overview of the role

Operating the signals and electrical controls needed to keep trains running safely and on time.

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in the rail sector across different types of organisations that together deliver the United Kingdom’s integrated rail system. This includes employers operating mainline and local rail networks, underground networks, and high-speed rail lines. Depending on type of network, rail infrastructure operators can expect to typically be based either in a small control location or a major operations control room. They may at times be required to go trackside. Rail infrastructure operators usually work shift patterns, helping to keep the rail network safe 24 hours a day.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to ensure trains travel on the network safely and efficiently to plan. They do this in a number of ways. They use signalling and train control systems to manage the rail transport network in line with an agreed train plan/timetable. This means making tactical decisions about how to best implement the plan so the network runs smoothly. They also respond to incidents, where the operational integrity of the rail transport network is affected. Particular features of this occupation are being fully aware of everything that might impact rail operations, plus the ability to maintain high levels of concentration and decide complex issues very quickly.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with many other stakeholders who contribute to making rail journeys happen on the network. Depending on the type of line, they typically interact with train drivers, maintenance staff, power suppliers, infrastructure controllers and specialists e.g., emergency services to respond effectively to incidents. They also communicate with other operators in different sectors of the rail industry, such as station staff or train crew. They liaise in order to safely deliver the agreed rail timetable, as well as manage variations caused by short notice changes to demand and circumstances e.g., disruption caused by extreme weather.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for operating the signalling and train control systems that provide access to the rail network for all train service groups running in the specific geographical area. Rail infrastructure operators are responsible for monitoring the progress of all the live rail movements within their area against predetermined train plans/timetables. Rail Infrastructure operators don’t design timetables, but they have the powers to adjust planned services where this will help efficiency or avoid disruption, communicating changes to those affected. They balance the needs of passenger and freight operators within the constraints of the rules, local railway infrastructure, signalling system and rolling stock. Safety is the priority and all decisions taken by the rail infrastructure operator must be complaint with rail regulations. Throughout their shift, a rail infrastructure operator must keep a careful log of all notable events. And they are typically expected to provide reports on network performance, as required by their own organisation. At the start and end of a shift, they provide and receive handovers to colleagues, that ensures continuity of service. They are responsible for proactively identifying incidents and disruptions. When this happens, they are responsible for making the rail infrastructure safe and minimising service disruptions. Such events can range from low-level situations (e.g., level crossing failure and animals on the line) through to supporting major incidents (e.g., derailment, fatalities and fire). Depending on the nature and scale, they will either take direct action or work alongside specialists by communicating what’s needed and sharing information, to return to safe operations and minimise service disruptions. During normal working rail infrastructure operators work within defined areas of responsibility with complete autonomy for the area they control in terms of safety and performance. Decisions are sometimes escalated to a line manager or technical expert in times of disruption when the needs of the whole network need to be considered.

Typical job titles include:

Control room operators Service controller Signallers Station control manager Traffic controllers Traffic manager Train service control manager Train service manager

Duties

  • Duty 1 Operate compliantly in accordance with regulatory and organisational requirements.
  • Duty 2 Prepare and deliver a handover at the beginning and the end of your shift.
  • Duty 3 Proactively working with other stakeholders involved in enabling the rail network to operate safely and efficiently. E.g., arranging protection to maintenance working on track, station staff, train operating companies and train crew.
  • Duty 4 Control train movements in line with planned timetables.
  • Duty 5 Manage the progress of rail traffic against the timetable and adjust operations to help maintain efficient train services and avoid disruption.
  • Duty 6 Manage your area of control, be situationally aware and respond to any reports of issues and/or concerns. E.g., reports of trespasses and animals on the line.
  • Duty 7 Contribute to the handling of routine degraded working, non-routine, and emergency incidents, as necessary.
  • Duty 8 Return the rail network to normal operation following an incident or disruption including working to any service recovery and mitigating the impact to customers.
  • Duty 9 Provide reports on network performance in line with requirements
  • Duty 10 Take responsibility for information received regarding incidents and delays to proactively manage disruption to train services and return train services to normal timetable as soon as possible.
  • Duty 11 Clearly communicate any alterations to the published train service that may affect the service to the customer.
  • Duty 12 Maintain a log of activities and decisions relevant to the delivery of the train service, and during incidents.

Apprenticeship summary

ST0419, rail infrastructure operator level 3


This summary page outlines the information that you and your employer need to know about your end-point assessment (EPA). You and your employer should also read the end-point assessment plan for the full details including roles and responsibilities, assessment method requirements 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 the apprenticeship. It assesses your competence against the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) on the occupational standard. You will have been trained on them during your training, both on and off the job. The EPA is your chance to show an independent assessor you can do the occupation you have been trained for. Your employer will only recommend you start the EPA when you have finished your training and both your employer and you think you are ready. Your employer will choose an end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) to deliver the EPA. Your employer and training provider should provide you with support on what to expect and how to prepare for your EPA. 

The typical length of the on-programme (training) part of this apprenticeship is 18 months. The end-point assessment period will typically last 3 months.

The grades available for this apprenticeship are:

Simulated practical assessment with questions

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

At the end of the apprenticeship, and having passed the EPA, you will be awarded with your apprenticeship certificate.

Gateway

The gateway is the point when all on-programme training and any mandatory qualification requirements have been met. When you have completed your training and your employer says you are competent in your occupation, you enter the gateway. The EPAO will check any mandatory qualifications are complete. They will tell you how to submit any necessary documents (for example, a portfolio). After the EPAO confirms that you have met all the requirements, the EPA starts.  

When you reach the gateway, you need to complete the following: 

Have achieved English and mathematics qualifications (including those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement) as specified by the apprenticeship funding rules. British Sign Language (BSL) qualifications are an alternative to English qualifications for those who have BSL as their primary language.

For the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence you must submit: portfolio of evidence

Portfolio of evidence requirements:

Apprentices must compile a portfolio of evidence during the on-programme period of the apprenticeship. It should contain evidence related to the KSBs that will be assessed by this assessment method. Evidence should 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:

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

The portfolio 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 discussion. Independent assessors should review the portfolio of evidence to prepare questions for the professional discussion assessment method. They are not required to provide feedback after this review.



Assessment methods



Practical assessment: you will be observed by the independent assessor completing a task or set of tasks that they give you. These tasks will be similar to your normal work. All equipment and information will be provided, and you will be told where this will take place. The practical assessment will last 3 hours. You will be asked a minimum of 9 questions by the independent assessor about the task(s). You will get at least 6 weeks notice of practical assessment.




Discussion: you will meet with the independent assessor in a quiet place that is free from distractions and be asked questions. The professional discussion will last 90 hours and the independent assessor will ask a minimum of 12 questions to find out how well you can do your job. This method may take place remotely, though the EPAO will confirm the details. You will be given at least 6 weeks notice of the professional discussion.


Who to contact for help or more information

If you have a query that relates to your job, then please speak to your employer. You should speak to your training provider if you have any other questions about the apprenticeship including the end-point assessment. You should get detailed support from the EPAO before the EPA begins. Your employer and training provide should talk to you when they think you are ready to take the EPA. The EPA is for you to show how good you are at your job. You should speak to your training provider about what to expect in the EPA and how to prepare. You should speak to the EPAO if your EPA has already started, and you have a query.


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 Chartered Institution of Railway Operators (CIRO) for Associate. The experience gained and responsibility held by the apprentice on completion of the apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

Please contact the relevant professional body for more details.

Print occupational standard

Details of the occupational standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in the rail sector across different types of organisations that together deliver the United Kingdom’s integrated rail system. This includes employers operating mainline and local rail networks, underground networks, and high-speed rail lines. Depending on type of network, rail infrastructure operators can expect to typically be based either in a small control location or a major operations control room. They may at times be required to go trackside. Rail infrastructure operators usually work shift patterns, helping to keep the rail network safe 24 hours a day.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to ensure trains travel on the network safely and efficiently to plan. They do this in a number of ways. They use signalling and train control systems to manage the rail transport network in line with an agreed train plan/timetable. This means making tactical decisions about how to best implement the plan so the network runs smoothly. They also respond to incidents, where the operational integrity of the rail transport network is affected. Particular features of this occupation are being fully aware of everything that might impact rail operations, plus the ability to maintain high levels of concentration and decide complex issues very quickly.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with many other stakeholders who contribute to making rail journeys happen on the network. Depending on the type of line, they typically interact with train drivers, maintenance staff, power suppliers, infrastructure controllers and specialists e.g., emergency services to respond effectively to incidents. They also communicate with other operators in different sectors of the rail industry, such as station staff or train crew. They liaise in order to safely deliver the agreed rail timetable, as well as manage variations caused by short notice changes to demand and circumstances e.g., disruption caused by extreme weather.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for operating the signalling and train control systems that provide access to the rail network for all train service groups running in the specific geographical area. Rail infrastructure operators are responsible for monitoring the progress of all the live rail movements within their area against predetermined train plans/timetables. Rail Infrastructure operators don’t design timetables, but they have the powers to adjust planned services where this will help efficiency or avoid disruption, communicating changes to those affected. They balance the needs of passenger and freight operators within the constraints of the rules, local railway infrastructure, signalling system and rolling stock. Safety is the priority and all decisions taken by the rail infrastructure operator must be complaint with rail regulations. Throughout their shift, a rail infrastructure operator must keep a careful log of all notable events. And they are typically expected to provide reports on network performance, as required by their own organisation. At the start and end of a shift, they provide and receive handovers to colleagues, that ensures continuity of service. They are responsible for proactively identifying incidents and disruptions. When this happens, they are responsible for making the rail infrastructure safe and minimising service disruptions. Such events can range from low-level situations (e.g., level crossing failure and animals on the line) through to supporting major incidents (e.g., derailment, fatalities and fire). Depending on the nature and scale, they will either take direct action or work alongside specialists by communicating what’s needed and sharing information, to return to safe operations and minimise service disruptions. During normal working rail infrastructure operators work within defined areas of responsibility with complete autonomy for the area they control in terms of safety and performance. Decisions are sometimes escalated to a line manager or technical expert in times of disruption when the needs of the whole network need to be considered.

Typical job titles include:

Control room operators Service controller Signallers Station control manager Traffic controllers Traffic manager Train service control manager Train service manager

Entry requirements

Need to enter wording around 18 minimum age

Occupation duties

Duty

KSBs

Duty 1 Operate compliantly in accordance with regulatory and organisational requirements.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 2 Prepare and deliver a handover at the beginning and the end of your shift.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 3 Proactively working with other stakeholders involved in enabling the rail network to operate safely and efficiently. E.g., arranging protection to maintenance working on track, station staff, train operating companies and train crew.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 4 Control train movements in line with planned timetables.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 5 Manage the progress of rail traffic against the timetable and adjust operations to help maintain efficient train services and avoid disruption.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 6 Manage your area of control, be situationally aware and respond to any reports of issues and/or concerns. E.g., reports of trespasses and animals on the line.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 7 Contribute to the handling of routine degraded working, non-routine, and emergency incidents, as necessary.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 8 Return the rail network to normal operation following an incident or disruption including working to any service recovery and mitigating the impact to customers.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 9 Provide reports on network performance in line with requirements

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 10 Take responsibility for information received regarding incidents and delays to proactively manage disruption to train services and return train services to normal timetable as soon as possible.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 11 Clearly communicate any alterations to the published train service that may affect the service to the customer.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 12 Maintain a log of activities and decisions relevant to the delivery of the train service, and during incidents.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K13 K14 K15 K16 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6


KSBs

Knowledge

K1: The component parts of the railway system including different railway organisations, industry bodies and business systems such as planning, performance management and asset management. Back to Duty

K2: Events that have shaped the evolution of the railway in Great Britain and how these have influenced change in the industry, including significant train accidents, significant timetable and network disruptions, the role of the unions and modernisation programmes. Back to Duty

K3: The relevant safety legislation and procedures, where applicable, to an operating railway including risk assessments, safety management systems, and safety culture. Back to Duty

K4: The operating procedures required to support the operation of a railway system, and manage planned, unplanned, and emergency situations that can occur on the network. Back to Duty

K5: The operational planning and timetabling principles and processes that underpin an effective train plan, resource plan, and engineering works programme. Back to Duty

K6: Awareness of environment and sustainability regulations, relevance to the occupation and the operator's responsibilities. Back to Duty

K7: Principles and policies of equality, diversion and inclusion in the workplace. Back to Duty

K8: The requirements for testing operational equipment, operational work locations and systems including pre-work and in-work testing. Back to Duty

K9: Handover requirements at the beginning, during and end of a shift. Back to Duty

K10: The roles and responsibilities of different colleagues and stakeholders that combine to provide an effective network. Back to Duty

K11: Limits of authority, when to escalate tasks and issues, and to whom. Back to Duty

K12: Common complaints, their causes and mitigators, for passengers and/or freight and other users of the network, such as staffing issues, onboard train incidents, passenger incidents at stations. Back to Duty

K13: Communication techniques: verbal and written, including specific protocols for communicating safety critical information. Back to Duty

K14: Their organisations commercial or operational priorities. Back to Duty

K15: The type of incidents and events which can occur on a network, the impact they have on passengers, freight, staff, and the associated safety mitigation and recovery procedures. Back to Duty

K16: Different types of investigations that apply to train running incidents and infrastructure related events and staff accidents, and the associated reporting procedures. Back to Duty

K17: The internal and external stakeholder roles and responsibilities of those involved in the different stages of an incident including response, recovery and lessons learnt. Back to Duty

K18: Strategies for collaborative working to manage conflicting aims and objectives, resolve conflict and reach effective consensus. Back to Duty

K19: Principles of risk-based decision making to support safe network operation including knowledge of different sources of information that inform those decisions, such as drawings, plans, schedules, safe systems of work, permits, relevant stakeholders and experts. Back to Duty

K20: The principles of personal responsibility in a safety critical work environment. Back to Duty

K21: When and how to challenge others to ensure compliance with safety regulations and procedures. Back to Duty

K22: Factors that affect decision making when working under pressure in planned, unplanned and emergency situations Back to Duty

K23: Strategies for effective decision making, such as informed prioritisation, compliance with procedures, and training. Back to Duty

Skills

S1: Apply risk-based safety principles to ways of working and decision-making. Back to Duty

S2: Operate and manage train control and information systems to support the operation of a railway system. Back to Duty

S3: Apply statutory and company environmental safe working practices during planned, unplanned and emergency situations. Back to Duty

S4: Operate and manage the train service in accordance with the train plan. Respond and adapt when disruptions occur to the planned service. Back to Duty

S5: Identify, report and record information, using correct terms, standards, templates, and protocols. Back to Duty

S6: Produces and manages a train plan, resource plan or engineering works programme. Back to Duty

S7: Maintain safety and security of own work environment. Back to Duty

S8: Identify and manage personal mental and physical fitness for duty, and role model mental and physical fitness for duty for others in the context of maintaining safety. Back to Duty

S9: Negotiate with colleagues or stakeholders, for example to access equipment or arrange system outage. Back to Duty

S10: Respond to and resolve common complaints. Back to Duty

S11: Communicate with others, for example internal and external stakeholders, colleagues, and managers. Back to Duty

S12: Identify, carry out and record role and industry related CPD activities to improve own practice. Back to Duty

S13: Respond to and act upon information received regarding incidents and delays to manage the disruption to train services and return them to the scheduled timetable. Back to Duty

S14: Implement initial response and incident management plans to match the scale of the situation and minimise the impact to the wider network, stakeholders and experts. Back to Duty

S15: Initiate and facilitate investigations into incidents and events. Adhere to reporting procedures for different types of investigations including unplanned and emergency incidents or events. Back to Duty

S16: Work collaboratively with internal and external parties as appropriate to resolve problems and deliver an efficient train service. Back to Duty

S17: Explore and gather information from a range of sources needed to support operating activities and decisions. Back to Duty

S18: Takes responsibility for the safety of themselves and others in a safety critical work environment. Back to Duty

S19: Challenge others and escalate safety issues to comply with safety regulations and procedures. Back to Duty

S20: Prioritise workload, for example balancing incident and event recovery with maintaining other services. Back to Duty

Behaviours

B1: Puts safety first for themselves and others. Back to Duty

B2: Takes responsibility for the quality of work and enables others to work to high standards. Back to Duty

B3: Supports an inclusive workplace, for example respectful of different views. Back to Duty

B4: Embeds their organisations commercial, operational, ethical, and safety priorities into their own practice over time. Back to Duty

B5: Willingness and ability to learn. Back to Duty

B6: Adapt to, and resilient in, challenging or changing situations. 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:

  • Chartered Institution of Railway Operators (CIRO) for Associate
Print EPA plan

End-point assessment plan

Version 1.1

Introduction and overview

This document explains the requirements for end-point assessment (EPA) for the Rail infrastructure operator apprenticeship. End-point assessment organisations (EPAOs) must follow this when designing and delivering the EPA.

Rail infrastructure operator apprentices, their employers and training providers should read this document.

An approved EPAO must conduct the EPA for this apprenticeship. Employers must select an approved EPAO from the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s Register of end-point assessment organisations (RoEPAO).

A full-time apprentice typically spends 18 months on-programme (this means in training before the gateway) working towards competence as a rail infrastructure operator. All apprentices must spend at least 12 months on-programme. All apprentices must spend at least 20% of their on-programme time completing off-the-job training.

This EPA has 2 assessment methods.

The grades available for each assessment method are:

Assessment method 1 - simulated practical assessment with questions:

Assessment method 2 - professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

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

EPA summary table

On-programme (typically 18 months)

Training to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) of the occupational standard.

Training towards English and mathematics qualifications at Level 21, if required.

Compiling a portfolio of evidence.

End-point assessment gateway

The employer must be content that the apprentice is working at or above the level of the occupational standard.

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think the apprentice:

  • is working at or above the occupational standard as a rail infrastructure operator
  • has the evidence required to pass the gateway and is ready to take the EPA

The apprentice must have achieved English and mathematics at Level 21.

The apprentice must submit all gateway evidence to the EPAO. The EPAO must review the evidence. When the EPAO confirms the gateway requirements have been met, the EPA period starts and typically takes 3 months to complete. The expectation is that the EPAO will confirm the gateway requirements have been met as quickly as possible.

For the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence, the apprentice will be required to submit a portfolio of evidence.

The apprentices must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

End-point assessment (typically 3 months)

Grades available for each method:

Simulated practical assessment with questions

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Overall EPA and apprenticeship can be graded:

    • fail
    • pass
    • distinction

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship standard aligns with Chartered Institution of Railway Operators (CIRO) for Associate. The experience gained and responsibility held by the apprentice on completion of the apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

Re-sits and re-takes



  • Re-take and re-sit grade cap: pass
  • Re-sit timeframe: typically 1 months
  • Re-take timeframe: typically 3 months

Duration of end-point assessment period

The EPA will be taken within the EPA period. The EPA period begins when the EPAO confirms the gateway requirements are met and is typically 3 months.

The expectation is that the EPAO will confirm the gateway requirements are met and the EPA begins as quickly as possible.

EPA gateway

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think the apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard as a rail infrastructure operator. They will then enter the gateway. The employer may take advice from the apprentice's training provider(s), but the employer must make the decision.

Apprentices must meet the following gateway requirements before starting their EPA.

These are:

  • achieved English and mathematics at Level 21.

Portfolio of evidence requirements:

Apprentices must compile a portfolio of evidence during the on-programme period of the apprenticeship. It should contain evidence related to the KSBs that will be assessed by this assessment method. Evidence should 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:

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

The portfolio 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 discussion. Independent assessors should review the portfolio of evidence to prepare questions for the professional discussion assessment method. They are not required to provide feedback after this review.

Apprentices must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

The EPA period starts when the EPAO confirms all gateway requirements have been met. The expectation is they will do this as quickly as possible.

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.

Simulated practical assessment with questions

Overview

In a simulated practical assessment, the independent assessor observes the apprentice completing a series of tasks set by the EPAO. The EPAO decides where it takes place. The test environment will use equipment software or both that simulates the apprentice’s natural working environment.

The practical tasks and responses to questions must be assessed holistically by the independent assessor when they are deciding the grade for the practical assessment.

Rationale

This EPA method is being used because this is a practical occupation requiring the demonstration of knowledge, skills and behaviours. Using equipment, software or both that will ensure that safety-critical aspects can be tested in a manner that is repeatable and consistent. The breadth of knowledge, skills and behaviours are unlikely to occur in a specific real-life scenario and this method ensures consistency for candidates operating across a range of scenarios. This is a cost-effective method of testing, ensuring the availability of equipment at a specific time. Tasks will be observed live by the independent assessor. This will ensure validity.

Delivery

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

The independent assessor must only observe one apprentice to ensure quality and rigour, and they must be as unobtrusive as possible.

The EPAO must give an apprentice 6 weeks notice of the practical assessment.

The simulated practical assessment with questions must take 3 hours.

The independent assessor can increase the time of the simulated practical assessment 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 practical assessment and questioning must allow the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs at the highest possible grade.

The simulated practical assessment with questions may take place in parts but must be completed within 1 working day(s). A working day is typically considered to be 7.5 hours long. The reason for this split is it will allow for the planned, unplanned and emergency scenarios to be assessed as discrete events. this will allow the independent assessor to identify appropriate ksbs as the basis for questioning.

EPAOs must manage invigilation of apprentices at all times 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 simulated practical assessment with questions before it begins. This does not count towards the assessment time.

The independent assessor should observe the following during the practical assessment. These activities provide the apprentice with the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs as shown in the mapping:

1. planned scenario

a planned event, including but not limited to:

2. unplanned scenario

an unplanned event, including but not limited to:

3. emergency situation scenario

an emergency situation, including but not limited to:

These activities provide the apprentice with the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs as shown in the mapping.

Questions must be asked to enable the apprentice to demonstrate competency against all targeted KSBs, that have not been assessed during the practical assessment. The independent assessor will ask a minimum of 3 open questions during each of the planned, unplanned and emergency scenarios, totalling a minimum of 9 questions. The independent assessor should use questions from a question bank generated by the EPAO and they can tailor these questions based on what they observe in order to assess underpinning KSBs.

Questioning must be completed within the total time allowed for the practical assessment. There may be breaks during the practical demonstration to allow the apprentice to move from one location to another and for meal breaks. Any breaks that occur do not count towards the assessment time. KSBs observed and answers to questions must be documented by the independent assessor.

Questioning can take place both during and after the practical assessment and the time for questioning is included in the overall assessment time. To remain as unobtrusive as possible, independent assessors should ask questions during natural stops between tasks and after completion of work rather than disrupting the apprentice’s flow. Follow-up questions are allowed.

The independent assessor can ask questions to clarify answers given by the apprentice. These questions are in addition to the set number of questions for the simulated practical assessment with questions and should be kept to a minimum.

The independent assessor conducts and assesses the simulated practical assessment with questions. They must record the KSBs observed, KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions and the grade achieved. The apprentice’s answers to questions must also be recorded.

The independent assessor makes all grading decisions.

Assessment location

The simulated practical assessment with questions will take place in a simulated environment selected by the EPAO (for example the EPAO’s or employer’s premises). The simulated environment must relate to the apprentice’s natural work environment. Equipment and resources needed for the simulated practical assessment with questions must be provided by the EPAO, who can liaise with the employer to provide these.

Questioning that occurs after the simulated practical assessment with questions should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Additional venue requirements that must be in place include:

practical assessments must be conducted in one of the following locations:

prior to the practical assessment taking place the employer will provide the necessary equipment and resources.

Question and resource development

EPAOs must write an assessment specification and question bank. The specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs shown in the mapping. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. EPAOs should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting employers. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this. The assessment specification and questions must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

EPAOs must develop purpose-built question banks and ensure that appropriate quality assurance procedures are in place. For example, considering standardisation, training and moderation. EPAOs must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard.

EPAOs must ensure that apprentices have a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

EPAOs must produce the following materials to support the simulated practical assessment 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 employer

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Overview

In the discussion, an independent assessor and apprentice have a formal two-way conversation. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate their competency across the KSBs mapped to this EPA method.

Rationale

This EPA method is being used because some KSBs need more nuanced questioning than a practical assessment can provide. This is a good way in which to assess a disparate range of KSBs because they can only be carried out at specific times when incidents have occurred. The portfolio forms the basis of the discussion.

Delivery

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

The independent assessor conducts and assesses the professional discussion.

The independent assessor will conduct and assess the professional discussion. The apprentice may use their portfolio to support their responses.

The professional discussion will be conducted as set out here:

The professional discussion is to be conducted on a one-to-one basis. Apprentices must be assessed against the KSBs assigned to this assessment method as shown in the mapping of KSBs. Apprentices are expected to understand and use relevant occupational language that would be typical of a competent person in this occupation.

During this method, the independent assessor must combine questions from the EPAO's question bank and are expected to use their professional judgement to tailor those questions appropriately. The apprentice can use the portfolio of evidence to support answers being given.

KSBs met and answers to questions must be recorded by the independent assessor.

The independent assessor must use the assessment tools and procedures that are set by the EPAO to record the professional discussion.

The independent assessor will make all grading decisions.

The EPAO must give an apprentice 6 weeks notice of the professional discussion.

The independent assessor must have at least 2 week(s) to review the supporting documentation.

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

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 professional discussion must last for 90 minutes. The independent assessor can increase the time of the professional discussion by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to respond to a question if necessary.

For the professional discussion, the independent assessor must ask at least 12 questions. Follow-up questions are allowed. 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. The professional discussion must allow the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method at the highest possible grade.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. The records must include the KSBs met, the grade achieved and answers to questions.

The independent assessor will make all grading decisions.

Assessment location

The professional discussion must take place in a suitable venue selected by the EPAO (for example the EPAO’s or employer’s premises).

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

Question and resource development

The EPAO must write an assessment specification and question bank. The specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs shown in the mapping. 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 employers. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this. The assessment specification and questions must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

The EPAO must develop purpose-built question banks and ensure that appropriate quality assurance procedures are in place, for example, considering standardisation, training and moderation. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard.

The EPAO must ensure that 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 professional discussion 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

Grading

Simulated practical assessment with questions

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme

KSBs

Pass

Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors

Distinction

Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors and all of the distinction descriptors

Legislation and underpinning principles
K4 K5 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 B2

Applies procedures to operate and manage train control and information systems in different contexts and circumstances, in planned, unplanned and emergency situations, in line with company procedures. Records decisions and reports actions in line with company reporting procedures (K4, S2, S3, S4, S5, B2)

Creates and manages a train plan, resource plan or engineering works programme within own area of responsibility, balancing efficiency and passenger or freight requirements, in line with organisational guidelines. (K5, S6)

 

 

Evaluates and justifies the choices made when creating and managing a train plan, resource plan or engineering works programme, that mitigate issues and balance efficiency and passenger or freight requirements, in line with organisational guidelines (K5, S6)

Ways of Working
K9 K12 K13 S8 S10 S11

Completes the procedures to be followed for a handover at the beginning, end of and during a shift in line with organisational procedures, ensuring responsibilities for managing fitness for duty in themselves and others are met (K9, S8)

Responds to common complaints, resolving issues in order to improve performance and customer satisfaction (K12, S10)

Selects and uses verbal and written techniques to ensure information is communicated efficiently and in line with organisation and safety critical communications protocols (K13, S11)

Resolves complaints in ways that mitigate the issue from reoccurring in future, in order to maintain an efficient service with lower levels of complaints (K12, S10)

Incidents
K15 K16 S13 S14 S15 B6

Selects and applies a management and recovery plan in response to a given event or incident, adapting to changing circumstances and information, in order to minimise disruption to train service and minimise impact on the wider network (K15, S13, S14, B6)

Carries out investigations relevant to the incident or event, including those for planned and unplanned incidents or events and completes the reporting procedures in line with regulatory and organisational procedures (K16, S15)

 

N/A

Decisions
K22 K23 S20

Considers and balances differing services, stakeholders and priorities when making decisions that impact the railway, reaching outcomes that are compliant with organisational procedures and ensure a safe and efficient service (K22, K23, S20)

N/A

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme

KSBs

Pass

Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors

Distinction

Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors and all of the distinction descriptors

Legislation and underpinning principles
K1 K2 K3 K6 K7 S1 B1 B3

Discusses the structure, function and evolution of the railway in Great Britain, including significant incidents and how these have influenced change in the industry (K1, K2)

Describes how they have effectively applied the principles of risk-based safety, to mitigate risks and maintain personal and public safety and comply with relevant legislation (K3, S1, B1)

Explains how they have effectively applied environmental and sustainable practices through their actions, in line with organisational requirements (K6)

Fosters an approach to communication and workplace relationships which models the guidelines on equality, diversity and inclusion as set out by national regulatory guidance and or company policy (K7, B3)

N/A

Ways of Working
K8 K10 K11 K14 S7 S9 S12 B4 B5

Explains the different methods of testing equipment, systems and operational work locations used to ensure system safety, and the steps followed to ensure the safety and security of themselves and their work environment, in line with company requirements (K8, S7)

Describes how they have applied negotiation techniques to reach an intended outcome that supports the delivery of an effective network (K10, S9)

Describes their limits of authority, including how they would escalate issues and tasks that fall outside of their authority, and to whom they would do this, in line with the remit of their role (K11)

Explains how their organisations’ priorities, and their own Continuous Professional Development, have influenced their practice to improve and support commercial, operational, ethical and safety priorities (K14, S12, B4, B5)

N/A

Incidents
K17 K18 S16

 

Explains how they work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders to effectively manage disruption to service (K17, K18, S16)

Evaluates the impact of collaborative working in delivering an efficient train service when the resolution of problems is required (K18, S16)

Decisions
K19 K20 K21 S17 S18 S19

Describes how they source and use data and information to complete operating activities and risk based decision-making tasks in line with statutory, regulatory, and organisational procedures (K19, S17)

 

Describes when and how to challenge unsafe acts and conditions where breaches or potential to breach safety regulations and procedures occur (K20, K21, S18, S19)

Explains factors considered when prioritising and making decisions whilst working under pressure (K22)

Justifies their use of data and information sources when making risk-based decisions to support a safe network operation (K19, S17)

Overall EPA grading

The assessment methods contribute equally to the overall EPA pass grade.

Performance in the EPA determines the apprenticeship grade of:

An independent assessor must individually grade the simulated practical assessment with questions and professional discussion 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 or more assessment methods, they will be awarded an overall EPA fail. 

To achieve an overall pass, the apprentice should achieve at least a pass in all the assessment methods. Due to the safety critical nature related to competency in this occupation in order to achieve an overall EPA pass, apprentices must achieve a pass in the simulated practical assessment method and a pass in the professional discussion assessment method.

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

Simulated practical assessment with questions Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence Overall Grading
Pass Pass Pass
Pass Distinction Pass
Distinction Pass Pass
Distinction Distinction Distinction

Re-sits and re-takes

Apprentices who fail one or more EPA method(s) can take a re-sit or a re-take at the 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.

Apprentices should have a supportive action plan to prepare for a re-sit or a re-take.

The employer and EPAO agree the timescale for a re-sit or re-take. A re-sit is typically taken within 1 month 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 3 months of the EPA outcome notification.

Failed EPA 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 apprentices wishing to move from pass to a higher grade.

An apprentice will get a maximum EPA grade of pass for a re-sit or re-take, unless the EPAO determines there are exceptional circumstances.

Roles and responsibilities

Roles Responsibilities

Apprentice

As a minimum, apprentices should:

  • participate in and complete on-programme training to meet the KSBs as outlined in the occupational standard for a minimum of 12 months
  • undertake 20% off-the-job training as arranged by the employer and training provider
  • understand the purpose and importance of EPA
  • undertake the EPA including meeting all gateway requirements

 

Employer

As a minimum, employers 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 a minimum of 20% off-the-job training to be undertaken by the apprentice 
  • decide when the apprentice is working at or above the level required by the occupational standard and so is ready for EPA
  • ensure that all supporting evidence required at the gateway is submitted in accordance with this EPA plan
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA (who, when, where) in a timely manner (including providing 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 well prepared for the EPA
  • require the training provider and EPAO to ensure the EPA is booked in a timely manner

Post-gateway, employers must: 

  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA (who, when, where) in a timely manner (including providing 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 KSBs to be met
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • ensure the apprentice is given sufficient time away from regular duties to prepare for, and complete all post-gateway elements of the EPA, and that any required supervision during this time (as stated within this EPA plan) is in place
  • where the apprentice is assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the resources used on a daily basis
  • pass the certificate to the apprentice upon receipt from the EPAO

EPAO

As a minimum, EPAOs must: 

  • conform to the requirements of this EPA plan and deliver its requirements in a timely manner
  • conform to the requirements of the Register of End-Point Assessment Organisations (RoEPAO)
  • conform to the requirements of the external quality assurance provider (EQAP) for this apprenticeship
  • understand the occupational standard
  • 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)
  • appoint suitably qualified and competent independent assessors and oversee their working
  • appoint administrators (and invigilators where required) to administer the EPA as appropriate
  • provide training for independent assessors in terms of good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and grading
  • provide adequate information, advice and guidance documentation to enable apprentices, employers and training providers to prepare for the EPA
  • arrange for the EPA to take place, in consultation with the employer
  • where the apprentice is not assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary
  • develop and provide appropriate assessment recording documentation to ensure a clear and auditable process is in place for providing assessment decisions and feedback to all relevant stakeholders
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider. In all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider (i.e. HEI), there must be no conflict of interest
  • have policies and procedures for internal quality assurance (IQA), and maintain records of regular and robust IQA activity and moderation for external quality assurance (EQA) purposes
  • deliver induction training for independent assessors, and for invigilators and/or markers (where used)
  • undertake standardisation activity on this apprenticeship standard for all independent assessors before they conduct an EPA for the first time, if the EPA is updated and periodically as appropriate (a minimum of annually)
  • manage invigilation of apprentices in order to maintain security of the assessment in line with the EPAO’s malpractice policy
  • verify the identity of the apprentice being assessed
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard

Pre-gateway, EPAOs must: 

  • make all necessary contractual arrangements, including agreeing the price of the EPA
  • provide adequate information, advice and guidance documentation to enable apprentices, employers and training providers to prepare for the EPA
  • arrange for the EPA to take place, in consultation with the employer.

At the Gateway, EPAOs must: 

  • confirm all gateway requirements have been met as quickly as possible.

Post-gateway, EPAOs must: 

  • where the apprentice is not assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary

Independent assessor

As a minimum, independent assessors must: 

  • have the competence to assess the apprentice at this level and hold any required qualifications and experience in line with the requirements of the independent assessor as detailed in the IQA section of this EPA plan
  • understand the occupational standard and the requirements of this EPA
  • have, maintain and be able to evidence, up-to-date knowledge and expertise of the subject matter
  • deliver the end-point assessment in-line with the EPA plan
  • comply with the IQA requirements of the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider (i.e. HEI)
  • attend induction training
  • attend standardisation events when they begin working for the EPAO, before they conduct an EPA for the first time and a minimum of annually on this apprenticeship standard
  • assess each assessment method, as determined by the EPA plan, and without extending the EPA unnecessarily
  • assess against the KSBs assigned to each assessment method, as shown in the mapping of assessment methods and as determined by the EPAO, and without extending the EPA unnecessarily
  • make all grading decisions
  • record and report all assessment outcome decisions, for each apprentice, following instructions and using assessment recording documentation provided by the EPAO, in a timely manner
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard
  • mark open (constructed) test answers accurately according to the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures

Training provider

As a minimum, training providers should:

  • work with the employer and support the apprentice during the off-the-job training to provide the opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours as listed in the occupational standard
  • conduct training covering any knowledge, skill or behaviour requirement agreed as part of the Commitment Statement (often known as the Individual Learning Plan)
  • monitor the apprentice’s progress during any training provider led on-programme learning
  • advise the employer, upon request, on the apprentice’s readiness for EPA
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA. Where the training provider is the EPAO (i.e. a HEI), there must be procures in place to mitigate against any conflict of interest. 

Reasonable adjustments

The EPAO must have reasonable adjustments arrangements for the EPA.

This should include:

  • how an apprentice qualifies for 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.

Internal quality assurance (IQA)

Internal quality assurance refers to how EPAOs ensure valid, consistent and reliable EPA decisions. EPAOs must adhere to the requirements within the roles and responsibilities section and:

  • have effective and rigorous quality assurance systems and procedures that ensure fair, reliable and consistent EPA regardless of employer, place, time or independent assessor
  • appoint independent assessors who are competent to deliver the EPA and who:
    • have recent relevant experience of the occupation or sector to at least occupational level 3 gained in the last 2 years or significant experience of the occupation or sector
  • operate induction training for anyone involved in the delivery and/or assessment of the EPA
  • provide training for independent assessors in good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and making grading decisions
  • provide ongoing training for markers and invigilators
  • provide standardisation activity for this apprenticeship standard for all independent assessors:
    • before they conduct an EPA for the first time
    • if the EPA is updated
    • periodically as appropriate (a minimum of annually)
  • conduct effective moderation of EPA decisions and grades
  • conduct appeals where required, according to the EPAO’s appeals procedure, reviewing and making final decisions on EPA decisions and grades
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider. In all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider (for example a higher education institution)

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with:

Chartered Institution of Railway Operators (CIRO) for Associate

Mapping of KSBs to assessment methods

Knowledge Assessment methods
K1

The component parts of the railway system including different railway organisations, industry bodies and business systems such as planning, performance management and asset management.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K2

Events that have shaped the evolution of the railway in Great Britain and how these have influenced change in the industry, including significant train accidents, significant timetable and network disruptions, the role of the unions and modernisation programmes.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K3

The relevant safety legislation and procedures, where applicable, to an operating railway including risk assessments, safety management systems, and safety culture.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K4

The operating procedures required to support the operation of a railway system, and manage planned, unplanned, and emergency situations that can occur on the network.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K5

The operational planning and timetabling principles and processes that underpin an effective train plan, resource plan, and engineering works programme.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K6

Awareness of environment and sustainability regulations, relevance to the occupation and the operator's responsibilities.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K7

Principles and policies of equality, diversion and inclusion in the workplace.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K8

The requirements for testing operational equipment, operational work locations and systems including pre-work and in-work testing.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K9

Handover requirements at the beginning, during and end of a shift.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K10

The roles and responsibilities of different colleagues and stakeholders that combine to provide an effective network.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K11

Limits of authority, when to escalate tasks and issues, and to whom.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K12

Common complaints, their causes and mitigators, for passengers and/or freight and other users of the network, such as staffing issues, onboard train incidents, passenger incidents at stations.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K13

Communication techniques: verbal and written, including specific protocols for communicating safety critical information.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K14

Their organisations commercial or operational priorities.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K15

The type of incidents and events which can occur on a network, the impact they have on passengers, freight, staff, and the associated safety mitigation and recovery procedures.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K16

Different types of investigations that apply to train running incidents and infrastructure related events and staff accidents, and the associated reporting procedures.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K17

The internal and external stakeholder roles and responsibilities of those involved in the different stages of an incident including response, recovery and lessons learnt.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K18

Strategies for collaborative working to manage conflicting aims and objectives, resolve conflict and reach effective consensus.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K19

Principles of risk-based decision making to support safe network operation including knowledge of different sources of information that inform those decisions, such as drawings, plans, schedules, safe systems of work, permits, relevant stakeholders and experts.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K20

The principles of personal responsibility in a safety critical work environment.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K21

When and how to challenge others to ensure compliance with safety regulations and procedures.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K22

Factors that affect decision making when working under pressure in planned, unplanned and emergency situations

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
K23

Strategies for effective decision making, such as informed prioritisation, compliance with procedures, and training.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
Skill Assessment methods
S1

Apply risk-based safety principles to ways of working and decision-making.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S2

Operate and manage train control and information systems to support the operation of a railway system.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S3

Apply statutory and company environmental safe working practices during planned, unplanned and emergency situations.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S4

Operate and manage the train service in accordance with the train plan. Respond and adapt when disruptions occur to the planned service.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S5

Identify, report and record information, using correct terms, standards, templates, and protocols.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S6

Produces and manages a train plan, resource plan or engineering works programme.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S7

Maintain safety and security of own work environment.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S8

Identify and manage personal mental and physical fitness for duty, and role model mental and physical fitness for duty for others in the context of maintaining safety.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S9

Negotiate with colleagues or stakeholders, for example to access equipment or arrange system outage.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S10

Respond to and resolve common complaints.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S11

Communicate with others, for example internal and external stakeholders, colleagues, and managers.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S12

Identify, carry out and record role and industry related CPD activities to improve own practice.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S13

Respond to and act upon information received regarding incidents and delays to manage the disruption to train services and return them to the scheduled timetable.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S14

Implement initial response and incident management plans to match the scale of the situation and minimise the impact to the wider network, stakeholders and experts.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S15

Initiate and facilitate investigations into incidents and events. Adhere to reporting procedures for different types of investigations including unplanned and emergency incidents or events.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
S16

Work collaboratively with internal and external parties as appropriate to resolve problems and deliver an efficient train service.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S17

Explore and gather information from a range of sources needed to support operating activities and decisions.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S18

Takes responsibility for the safety of themselves and others in a safety critical work environment.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S19

Challenge others and escalate safety issues to comply with safety regulations and procedures.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S20

Prioritise workload, for example balancing incident and event recovery with maintaining other services.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
Behaviour Assessment methods
B1

Puts safety first for themselves and others.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B2

Takes responsibility for the quality of work and enables others to work to high standards.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions
B3

Supports an inclusive workplace, for example respectful of different views.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B4

Embeds their organisations commercial, operational, ethical, and safety priorities into their own practice over time.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B5

Willingness and ability to learn.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B6

Adapt to, and resilient in, challenging or changing situations.

Back to Grading
Simulated practical assessment with questions

Mapping of KSBs to grade themes

Simulated practical assessment with questions - PracticalAssessment

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Legislation and underpinning principles
K4 K5
S2 S3 S4 S5 S6
B2

The operating procedures required to support the operation of a railway system, and manage planned, unplanned, and emergency situations that can occur on the network. (K4)

The operational planning and timetabling principles and processes that underpin an effective train plan, resource plan, and engineering works programme. (K5)

Operate and manage train control and information systems to support the operation of a railway system. (S2)

Apply statutory and company environmental safe working practices during planned, unplanned and emergency situations. (S3)

Operate and manage the train service in accordance with the train plan. Respond and adapt when disruptions occur to the planned service. (S4)

Identify, report and record information, using correct terms, standards, templates, and protocols. (S5)

Produces and manages a train plan, resource plan or engineering works programme. (S6)

Takes responsibility for the quality of work and enables others to work to high standards. (B2)

Ways of Working
K9 K12 K13
S8 S10 S11

Handover requirements at the beginning, during and end of a shift. (K9)

Common complaints, their causes and mitigators, for passengers and/or freight and other users of the network, such as staffing issues, onboard train incidents, passenger incidents at stations. (K12)

Communication techniques: verbal and written, including specific protocols for communicating safety critical information. (K13)

Identify and manage personal mental and physical fitness for duty, and role model mental and physical fitness for duty for others in the context of maintaining safety. (S8)

Respond to and resolve common complaints. (S10)

Communicate with others, for example internal and external stakeholders, colleagues, and managers. (S11)

N/A

Incidents
K15 K16
S13 S14 S15
B6

The type of incidents and events which can occur on a network, the impact they have on passengers, freight, staff, and the associated safety mitigation and recovery procedures. (K15)

Different types of investigations that apply to train running incidents and infrastructure related events and staff accidents, and the associated reporting procedures. (K16)

Respond to and act upon information received regarding incidents and delays to manage the disruption to train services and return them to the scheduled timetable. (S13)

Implement initial response and incident management plans to match the scale of the situation and minimise the impact to the wider network, stakeholders and experts. (S14)

Initiate and facilitate investigations into incidents and events. Adhere to reporting procedures for different types of investigations including unplanned and emergency incidents or events. (S15)

Adapt to, and resilient in, challenging or changing situations. (B6)

Decisions
K22 K23
S20

Factors that affect decision making when working under pressure in planned, unplanned and emergency situations (K22)

Strategies for effective decision making, such as informed prioritisation, compliance with procedures, and training. (K23)

Prioritise workload, for example balancing incident and event recovery with maintaining other services. (S20)

N/A

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence - Discussion

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Legislation and underpinning principles
K1 K2 K3 K6 K7
S1
B1 B3

The component parts of the railway system including different railway organisations, industry bodies and business systems such as planning, performance management and asset management. (K1)

Events that have shaped the evolution of the railway in Great Britain and how these have influenced change in the industry, including significant train accidents, significant timetable and network disruptions, the role of the unions and modernisation programmes. (K2)

The relevant safety legislation and procedures, where applicable, to an operating railway including risk assessments, safety management systems, and safety culture. (K3)

Awareness of environment and sustainability regulations, relevance to the occupation and the operator's responsibilities. (K6)

Principles and policies of equality, diversion and inclusion in the workplace. (K7)

Apply risk-based safety principles to ways of working and decision-making. (S1)

Puts safety first for themselves and others. (B1)

Supports an inclusive workplace, for example respectful of different views. (B3)

Ways of Working
K8 K10 K11 K14
S7 S9 S12
B4 B5

The requirements for testing operational equipment, operational work locations and systems including pre-work and in-work testing. (K8)

The roles and responsibilities of different colleagues and stakeholders that combine to provide an effective network. (K10)

Limits of authority, when to escalate tasks and issues, and to whom. (K11)

Their organisations commercial or operational priorities. (K14)

Maintain safety and security of own work environment. (S7)

Negotiate with colleagues or stakeholders, for example to access equipment or arrange system outage. (S9)

Identify, carry out and record role and industry related CPD activities to improve own practice. (S12)

Embeds their organisations commercial, operational, ethical, and safety priorities into their own practice over time. (B4)

Willingness and ability to learn. (B5)

Incidents
K17 K18
S16

The internal and external stakeholder roles and responsibilities of those involved in the different stages of an incident including response, recovery and lessons learnt. (K17)

Strategies for collaborative working to manage conflicting aims and objectives, resolve conflict and reach effective consensus. (K18)

Work collaboratively with internal and external parties as appropriate to resolve problems and deliver an efficient train service. (S16)

N/A

Decisions
K19 K20 K21
S17 S18 S19

Principles of risk-based decision making to support safe network operation including knowledge of different sources of information that inform those decisions, such as drawings, plans, schedules, safe systems of work, permits, relevant stakeholders and experts. (K19)

The principles of personal responsibility in a safety critical work environment. (K20)

When and how to challenge others to ensure compliance with safety regulations and procedures. (K21)

Explore and gather information from a range of sources needed to support operating activities and decisions. (S17)

Takes responsibility for the safety of themselves and others in a safety critical work environment. (S18)

Challenge others and escalate safety issues to comply with safety regulations and procedures. (S19)

N/A

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Employers involved in creating the standard: Crossrail, Network Rail, HS1, Transport for London , GWR

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.1 End-point assessment plan, funding band and standard revised 21/09/2022 Not set Not set
1.0 Approved for delivery 17/08/2017 20/09/2022 Not set

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