End-point assessment (EPA) is an independent assessment that takes place at the end of the apprenticeship training. This is to test that the apprentice is competent in their occupation.
All apprentices must complete an EPA. There are a variety of assessment methods to test apprentices’ competency.
Apprentices, like any student, should be aware of the nature and demands of the assessment they are working towards from the very start. All apprenticeships should start with the goal of achieving the best grade possible. It is important for apprentices to be familiar with what is needed to achieve those grades.
The apprentice panel survey 2020 found preparation for end-point-assessment had low proportions satisfied (32%) or very satisfied (11%). Also, 38% of respondents did not know who their end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) is. Apprentices nearing gateway should be aware of who their EPAO is and the EPAO is expected to engage with the apprentice to prepare them for EPA.
Before the apprentice starts, providing them with an overview of what an apprenticeship is and how it is assessed can help with what is expected of them.
The end-point assessment plan should be given to the apprentice during the induction to their apprenticeship. The Institute is currently in the process of creating clear and simple summaries of assessment plans for apprentices.
The employer should have an overall understanding of the apprentice’s training - requirements and should try to match on-the-job training to their end-point assessment requirements.
Everyone involved should be equally familiar with the grading criteria and offer feedback and support.
Preparation for end-point assessment should be discussed at progress meetings with the training provider, employer and apprentice. This is to check progress of specific assessment criteria and agree to a strategy to address areas for improvement.
The employer should be aware that 20% off-the-job training is a minimum and that if extra study leave is required, it should be supported.
Training plans should include regular opportunities for apprentices to practise requirements of their end-point assessments that are linked to the knowledge, skills and behaviours.
The employer and training provider need to work together and address areas where the apprentice needs to make more progress towards the requirements of their EPA.
Gateway sits between the end of training and the beginning of the assessment period when the EPA will take place.
At gateway, the employer and training provider will review their apprentice’s knowledge, skills and behaviours to see if they are ready to take their EPA.
The gateway review takes place near the end of an apprenticeship to make sure the apprentice has completed the mandatory aspects of the apprenticeship and is ready to take their assessment.
Apprentices must meet the gateway requirements set out in the assessment plan before taking their EPA.
During your apprenticeship, you will be assessed to make sure you’re achieving the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed for your apprenticeship.
Your end-point assessment or EPA is carried out by an independent organisation known as an end-point assessment organisation (EPAO).
If you are unsure about your EPA, speak to your training provider.
There are lots of different types of assessment methods.
You can find the assessment plan for your apprenticeship on our website. This tells you which assessment method is used in your apprenticeship.
For each assessment method, an assessor might ask you questions. This is to make sure you show the assessor all the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed for your occupation.