FAQs 2018-04-26T12:50:39+00:00
When do you need to appoint an EPA organisation? 2018-02-12T09:24:09+00:00

You should decide on your End Point Assessment quite early into the apprenticeship journey. There is a register of approved End Point Organisations that explains which particular organisations are approved to offer independent assessment. It is the decision of the employer working with the apprentice to select an End Point Assessment Organisation.

How will assessments be conducted? 2018-02-12T09:25:00+00:00

Each assessment is defined within each individual apprenticeship standard assessment plan. The synoptic assessments are designed to be holistic, and evaluate the skills, knowledge and behaviours over a broad range of the relevant standard. A range of assessment methods will be used at each End-Point Assessment. These can include: tests, observations, projects, professional discussions, competency interviews and portfolio reviews.

How much does it cost? 2018-02-12T09:25:25+00:00

Fees will often vary by apprenticeship standard. Our fees include quality assurance and certification costs, and are constructed in accordance with the standard pay structure. Discounts on fees can be offered when there will be a number of assessments, or where multiple assessments can be undertaken in one day in one location. Contact us for more information on fees.

Who can administer the End Point Assessment? 2018-04-19T08:51:12+00:00

The end-point assessment must be conducted by a registered assessment organisation that is independent from the apprentice’s training provider and/or employer, to ensure everyone following the same apprenticeship standard is assessed consistently.

What is the cost of End Point Assessment (EPA)? 2018-04-19T08:53:40+00:00

All of our prices fall within the ‘Affordability’ criterion published in most assessment plans. Pricing is available and all prices are negotiable. Please contact info@professionalassessment.co.uk

On what basis will costs be negotiated? 2018-04-19T08:54:33+00:00

There are a number of factors that will be considered.  For example, number of learners, facilities available and possibly location. Please contact info@professionlassesmeent.co.uk

Will Professional Assessment Ltd be making an upfront charge for registration of apprentices for end-point assessment? 2018-04-19T08:55:31+00:00

There will be no up-front registration fee for end-point assessment before the gateway. We would encourage early registration to enable planning .Please see our pricing structure and discuss with our senior management team, the benefits of early EPAO registration. We will charge £200 for assessment planning. Al other assessment charges will be invoiced post the full assessment

How much will you charge for a re-sit? 2018-04-19T08:56:25+00:00

There will be one free re-sit for all multiple-choice tests. All other component assessments that need to be retaken will be charged at a set rate based on the standard and the assessment type; please discuss with us and review our fee structures for re-takes and re-sits

How do I become an end-point assessor with Professional Assessment? 2018-04-19T08:58:55+00:00

Please review our assessor academy page

What support material will IAO make available for training providers, employers and apprentices? 2018-04-19T08:59:45+00:00

We are phasing development of support materials so that there will be a bank of resources available for 2018 starts, such as sample questions, professional discussion and practical observation guidance. These will then be developed further to be a full support package before the end of 2018. All support materials will be accessible through the IAO EPA Portal and will be available free across all standards.

What system will you be using to manage the end-point assessment process? 2018-04-19T09:00:32+00:00

We are currently developing a fully integrated EPA IT system designed specifically for end-point assessment.

Will training providers or employers have to become approved centres to work with Professional Assessment Ltd for end-point assessment? 2018-04-19T09:01:35+00:00

No, the EPA arrangement will be covered by a contract.  Where regulated qualifications are involved, however, centre approval will be required as it is currently.

How will apprentices be certificated? 2018-04-19T09:04:37+00:00

Final certification will be from the ESFA once EPAO and the Training Organisation have notified them of apprenticeship completion. As an additional service Professional Assessment will also provide e-certificates for all component assessments taken as part of the end-point assessment process. These certificates, are certificates of assessment and do not supersede any apprenticeship certificate.

Are functional skills a requirement? 2018-04-19T09:05:29+00:00

Each standard has its own specific requirement for maths and English and completion of the appropriate functional skills and appropriate evidence must be presented at the gateway review meeting.

Are qualifications required as part of the standards? 2018-04-19T09:06:30+00:00

Some employer groups have identified qualifications that are required to be taken during the on-programme training for certain standards. These are either mandatory or recommended but would have to be completed prior to the end-point assessment process. Training Organisations need to ensure they are compliant with relevant assessment plans and design and implement their programmes accordingly.

Does the business project have to be completed in a test environment or is this done by the learner at home/work? 2018-04-19T09:07:36+00:00

The business project does not have to be completed in controlled conditions however the apprentice does have to sign a declaration form stating that it is their own work. All parties should read the relevant assessment plan to ascertain the parameters and conditions of any business project

Will it be the same assessor to complete all parts of the EPA programme? 2018-04-19T09:09:03+00:00

Ideally yes, the aim is that the same assessor will be responsible for all the assessments for the apprentice. Where multiple assessments exist he assessor may differ, but at PAL our overriding consideration is to ensure the best possible end point assessment experience for assessors.

Do Professional Assessment prices include the EQA fee? 2018-04-19T09:09:44+00:00

Yes, all prices set by Professional Assessment will include fees charged by the External Quality Assurance organisation.

Who pays for EPA? 2018-04-19T09:11:52+00:00

Costs for EPA are paid by the training provider who contracts with the assessment organisation on the employer’s behalf. This will often be colleges or training providers, so they should factor in the costs of EPA when they negotiate their contract with employers. Levy funding will cover EPA costs, and may cover resits – subject to restrictions and their own negotiations. For non-levy paying employers, the funding source is different (10% from the employer, 90% from government funding) but the payment set up is the same – paid by the training provider who contracts with the assessment organisation on the employer’s behalf.

Do I have to pay for resits? 2018-04-19T09:12:41+00:00

Usually, yes. Some standards specify that all components of the EPA have to be retaken if an apprentice fails a section. Some standards let an apprentice take only the components they’ve failed. Assessment plans detail re-sit requirements and contact Professional Assessment for further information

Can I get a discount? 2018-04-19T09:13:44+00:00

There may be some discounts if you bring a high number of apprentices, or there is the option for multiple assessments.

Can qualifications be paid for out of apprenticeship funding? 2018-04-19T09:15:33+00:00

If the qualification is mandatory, then you can use funding for this. Optional qualifications aren’t covered by funding. Employers and providers will have to agree how they’re going to pay for any optional qualifications they use.

What is the organisation ID number for Professional Assessment Ltd? 2018-04-19T09:16:44+00:00

On the register of apprenticeship awarding organisations, our ID number is EPA00095. You will need this when you register your apprentice on the ILR to start their apprenticeship.

How is an apprentice registered with an EPAO? 2018-04-19T09:17:40+00:00

Once an employer has selected the EPAO, the Training Organisation acting on behalf of the employer notifies the EPAO organisation and the Training Organisation will add this information to the Apprentice ILR and the EPAO will advise the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) that they have been selected as the EPAO.

How do I book the EPA for my apprentice? 2018-04-19T09:18:48+00:00

When the apprentice has completed the minimum amount of training and achieved their functional skills and where required additional qualifications and successfully passed their gateway review, the EPAO can be contacted to arrange for an assessment planning meeting to discuss the assessment schedule.

When can I reserve EPA? 2018-04-19T09:19:40+00:00

An End point organisation must be approved by the ESFA to deliver end-point assessment before it can take bookings. Remember that standards specify the amount of learning for an apprentice – the shortest possible is 12 months. A gateway meeting should be completed and the employer must confirm assessment readiness

How quickly can I get an apprentice from reservation request to assessment? 2018-04-19T09:21:00+00:00

Once you make a reservation request, our team will manage the scheduling with you. Post the gateway meeting, we ask you to provide three possible dates for an assessment planning meeting, the first date being no earlier than seven days after the gateway meeting. At the assessment planning meeting, the assessment schedule will be agreed and ideally all assessment activities will be completed within an eight week timescale.

How do I know if my apprentice is ready for the EPA? 2018-04-19T09:23:40+00:00

Employers and providers, along with the respective apprentice must decide together if the apprentice is ready for assessment by judging their learning and behaviours at the gateway review.

Remember that getting to gateway always means passing English and maths at a level set by the standard.

Our offer includes the provision of assessment guidance, assessment for learning materials and mock assessments and we recommend that apprentices have the opportunity to complete mock assessments, to evaluate readiness.

When do we get the apprenticeship certificate? 2018-04-19T09:24:48+00:00

The ESFA issues apprenticeship certificates after the training organisation and the EPAO have sent them the EPA results and managed any queries they have. They send the certificate directly to the employer. We cannot guarantee the ESFA’s timelines though bear in mind they let organisations claim certificates only once a month.

We also issue our own Professional Assessment-branded EPA statement of achievement and these are sent out within four weeks from the last assessment to the apprentice

Who sets the criteria for End-point assessment? 2018-04-19T09:25:54+00:00

Each standard has an approved assessment plan that has been compiled and agreed by a trailblazer employer led group. The assessment plan details the nature of the end-point assessment and details the grading system to be applied. Additionally the plans set out the roles and responsibilities of the assessor, the internal quality assurance function and the role of the external quality assurance body. The plan in the affordability section indicates the charges for end-point assessment and EPAOs will structure their offer accordingly.

How do employers and training providers agree which EPA organisation to use? 2018-04-19T09:26:39+00:00

Employers get to choose which apprentice assessment organisation to use for EPA. This might be based on reputation and good standing or their trust in the organisation helping their apprentice to learn and demonstrate the right knowledge, skills and behaviours.

How do employers and training providers manage the EPA process? 2018-04-19T09:27:56+00:00

It’s really important that employers and providers understand each other clearly from the outset. Both sides must manage the contract negotiation and processes well so that it’s clear who pays what and when – and also what counts as success at each stage of the apprenticeship journey. The Professional Assessment team have experience of apprenticeship delivery, so we are able to support discussions around how best to plan for EPA

What evidence do I need to show my apprentice has met the maths and English level set by the standard? 2018-04-19T09:30:26+00:00

After sitting the functional skills assessment, you should have the results online and certificates and you need to upload these to the EPA portal. If your apprentice had already achieved the level of English and/or maths set by the standard, you would submit these results in the same way.

Acceptable evidence is full certificate or e-certificate, statement of results issued by an awarding organisation, screenshot of the awarding organisation’s system showing the qualification has been achieved/awarded or a copy of the personal learner record.

Can my apprentices sit their English and maths assessments with the rest of the EPA? 2018-04-19T09:31:33+00:00

No. As reaching the set level of English and maths is a requirement of gateway, the apprentice must show this before we can confirm them on EPA. You’ll need to submit proof of achievement to us and, in some cases, sitting the next level of functional skills too.

What if my apprentice doesn’t reach the English or maths level between making a reservation request and getting to gateway? 2018-04-19T09:32:23+00:00

Because of ESFA rules, we cannot put an apprentice through EPA unless they’ve reached gateway with the right level of English and maths, we will not undertake assessment planning until we have received the functional skills evidence and a gateway review report that clearly details EPA readiness.

Can my apprentice get an exemptions from the functional skills requirement? 2018-04-19T09:33:23+00:00

Yes, if they can show prior achievement at the right level. The ESFA sets the English and maths qualifications and grades apprentices need to be exempted from the English and maths requirements of the standard. Your Training Organisation should be able to provide information regarding exemptions.

How do I know your assessors are high quality? 2018-04-19T09:34:22+00:00

To add to our network of independent assessors, we use strict recruitment criteria such as membership of professional bodies or years of industry experience. We run bespoke assessment training for all new assessors plus on-going help and support to keep them up-to- date with quality assurance and apprenticeship requirements.

How do I become a Professional Assessment Ltd independent end assessor? 2018-04-19T09:36:27+00:00

We’re always interested in hearing from talented and experienced people who can assess apprentices’ performance. Please contact us at info@professionalassessment.co.uk if you are interested in becoming an assessor.