Guidance

Register of end-point assessment organisations - introduction

Of interest to organisations involved in the end-point assessment of apprenticeship standards - April 2019

1. Introduction

1.1 Employers are working together to design new Standards and assessment plans for apprenticeships. The Standard describes the skills, knowledge and behaviours that an individual needs to be fully competent in an occupation. The assessment plan sets out how the apprentice will be assessed to demonstrate that they have met the standard.

1.2 The sole purpose of the Register of End-point Assessment Organisations (the Register) is to provide employers with a list of organisations who have shown us that they are capable of delivering independent end-point assessment. The Register is not for the training elements of the apprenticeship. If you are interested in training apprentices, you should refer to our recent guidance.

1.3 The Register will enable the delivery of end-point assessments and help employers select who should deliver their end-point assessment. Employers can only select organisations to conduct end-point assessment from the Register.

1.4 Because the decision to select an organisation will be made by the employer, we will not be contracting with organisations on the Register. Being on the Register does not guarantee that an organisation will be selected to deliver end-point assessment. Once the employer selects their end-point assessment organisation they will confirm this with their training provider.

1.5 There is no link between this Register and other registers such as our Register of Training Organisations, Register of Apprentice Training Providers or Ofqual’s Register of Regulated Qualifications

2. About end-point assessment

2.1 Although each standard has an employer designed synoptic end-point assessment, the nature and approach to assessment varies across standards.The detail of the assessment is set out explicitly in each assessment plan.

2.2 The end-point assessment is separate to any qualifications or other assessment that the apprentice may undertake during training. The apprentice will not be able to achieve the apprenticeship without passing the end-point assessment.

2.3 As well as being separate to the delivery of the apprenticeship, the end-point assessment must be independent. Assessment plans are developed according to published guidance, from which an extract is included below:

An independent EPA ensures that those making a decision on the competency of the apprentice have nothing to gain from the outcome of the assessment. To ensure high quality apprenticeships, it is vital that all apprentices are assessed in a fair and objective manner. Independence and impartiality are critical to ensuring rigorous and high quality assessment and that the standard is maintained over time.

3.The end-point assessment organisation

3.1 The end-point assessment organisation will, in line with the assessment plan:

  • design and develop the content of the end-point assessment. For example, test questions, project topics or interview scripts.
  • check and verify that the apprentice has completed any prerequisites to endpoint assessment, including any mandatory qualifications
  • conduct end-point assessment of apprentices
  • quality assure the end-point assessments they deliver
  • adhere to the external quality assurance arrangements
  • ensure end-point assessment is synoptic and independent
  • identify and record when the apprentice has passed the end-point assessment apply and pay for the apprenticeship certificate

4. How the Register will assist employers

4.1 Employers will use the Register to select an organisation to deliver end-point assessment for them. Once the employer has selected their end-point assessment organisation, their lead training provider will contract with them for their services, on behalf of the employer. We have produced information for employers on the overall funding of apprenticeships.

4.2 Employers may use the Register in different ways. Employers will determine who they will select and the process for selection. The ESFA will have no involvement in selection decisions.

5. The Register process

5.1 You can apply to join the Register at any time. Through the application process we ask organisations to give us evidence of their corporate governance, financial standing, occupational and assessment capacity and capability and delivery model, including conflict of interest policy. We then assess these, to seek assurance that they have the right experience, personnel and procedures in place to deliver independent end-point assessment.

5.2 The list of standards we invite applications against is available within a separate document. Organisations will be able to apply against other standards that are approved for delivery as they are added.

5.3 Some assessment plans are specific about the type of organisation that can carry out end-point assessment. We do not assess applications from organisations not permitted to deliver end-point assessment by the assessment plan. For example:

  • where the assessment plan states Ofqual will be the external quality assuror, we will only accept applications from organisations who meet Ofqual’s General Conditions of Recognition.
  • if the assessment plan names one organisation as the sole end-point assessment organisation for the standard we will invite them to apply.

5.4 We will continue to evaluate and refine the Register in its position to support the reformed apprenticeships as more standards become available for delivery and more organisations are approved to deliver end-point assessment.

Published 11 April 2019