EPA Frequently Asked Questions

What is end-point assessment?
In October 2013 the Government announced they were stopping the Apprenticeship Frameworks and instead were going to introduce new Apprenticeship Standards written by employers. In 2015 groups of employers “”Trailblazers”” started writing the new apprenticeship standards, ensuring apprentices would be trained in the skills, knowledge and behaviours industry needed. Apprenticeship Standards have now replaced the old Frameworks. Historically apprentices would undertake assessment throughout their apprenticeship programme. However, as part of the Governments Apprenticeship Reforms apprentices now have their formal assessments at the end of their apprenticeship programme and this is called End-Point Assessment (EPA). Each Apprenticeship Standard has its very own End-Point Assessment Plan written by the same Trailblazer Group who wrote the Standard. Every end-point assessment plan clearly details what the end-point assessment looks like, who is involved, the assessment methods that are required and the amount of time to complete the assessments. ELS produce very detailed guides to support our apprentices.

What assessment methods are used?
Every end-point assessment plan is different. Some required practical demonstrations, knowledge tests, presentations, a professional discussion etc. Our Scheduling Team will explain the full process to you and everything that is involved. We will also provide you with all the support materials you require t help prepare you for your end-point assessments.

What is “Gateway”?
“Gateway” is a new term used in Apprenticeships. Apprentices now go through two main key stages in their apprentice programme. The first stage is called the “In-Training” stage. This is completed with the Training Provider. The second stage is called the “End-Point Assessment” stage. In between these two key stages you have a process called the “”Gateway””. This is basically a formal meeting which takes places between the Employer, Training Provider and the Apprentice. The Employer must be confident and confirm, during this meeting, that the apprentice is deemed competent in all of the Apprenticeship Standard areas and any pre-requisites have been achieved i.e. Functional Skills tests have been achieved and certificates have been or can be uploaded to the End-Point Assessment Organisation. ELS provide Declaration and Readiness Reports to help the Employer.

Who conducts the End-Point Assessment?
An independent end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) must carry out the end-point assessment with each apprentice. ELS is a registered independent EPAO.

Who chooses the End-Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO)?
The EPAO must be chosen by the employer

What is the cost of end-point assessment?
The cost of each end-point assessment is different for each apprenticeship standard and depends on the assessments involved, durations and locations.
The cost of an end-point assessment will not usually exceed 20 percent (%) of the funding band maximum. This does not, however, mean that end-point assessment must cost the full 20 percent.
ELS calculate the cost of our end-point assessment based on the cost to deliver.

Who pays for end-point assessment?
Payment for end-point assessment is made from the employer’s National Apprenticeship Service account, with the actual payment routed through the main provider.
ELS will agree the end-point assessment price with the employer. Once agreed, ELS will send an agreement to the employer to be signed which must also be countersigned by the Training Provider.
The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) are undertaking a policy and process review to allow EPAOs to directly access the employer’s National Apprenticeship Service account in the future.

Retake and re-sit information
When undertaking a retake or resit, the assessment method(s) will need to be re-attempted in full, regardless of any individual assessment criteria that were passed on any prior attempt. Apprentices who achieve a pass grade cannot re-sit or retake the end-point assessment to achieve a higher grade.
When the Apprentice fails the end-point assessment it becomes a collective decision between the Employer, Provider and Apprentice as to whether a resit or retake is attempted.
For a retake, the Apprentice will need a period of further learning and, will need to complete a new gateway readiness meeting and report.
On a re-sit, please contact ELS to schedule.
A comprehensive information on the retake and re-sit clauses can also be found on the agreement ELS will provide the Employer and Training Provider at the start of the process.