Apprenticeships are gradually changing from the SASE framework (Specification of Apprenticeship Standards in England) to new, employer-led, apprenticeship standards. The idea is to put employers in the driving seat as they play a full and active part in deciding the Standard and also actively manage their involvement and contracts with training providers.
Apprentices must learn and evidence skills, knowledge and behaviours set down in the apprenticeship standard. The standard is made up of on-programme training and learning, with 20% of this taking place “off the job”
End Point Assessments
Possibly the biggest change is the introduction of End Point Assessments (EPA).
This has to be delivered by an independent end-point assessment organisation who has had no involvement with the training of the Apprentice. The apprentice cannot achieve their apprenticeship without passing the end-point assessment.
All end-point assessment providers must be approved by the ESFA before being added to the Register of Apprentice Assessment Organisations (RoAAO).
When an employer takes on an apprentice, they can select the end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) from the register and then confirm their selection with their training provider.
GQA Qualifications and End Point Assessment
GQA Qualifications is in the process of making their first application to become an End Point Assessment Organisation and will look to apply for other Standards where we have the correct background and occupational competence.
As part of our service as an EPAO, we are developing resources to help Apprentices prepare for EPA. The plan is to give an Apprentice registered with GQA for EPA access to relevant support material, depending on the EPA methods this could include revision material, practice tests, advice on professional discussion and interview skills etc.
These resources will be accessed through a secure portal once the Apprentice is registered.