What is the apprenticeship End Point Assessment (EPA)? It is an independent assessment of the knowledge, skills and behaviours which have been learnt throughout the apprenticeship and tests the apprentice’s ability to apply them in the workplace.

The EPA was introduced with apprenticeship Standards in 2017, these replaced the old Frameworks which were built up of various units for assessment which doesn’t necessarily teach them the skills for their specific job role. Standards were introduced with more emphasis on learning, prior skills, the job role and the employer needs.

Back to the EPA…it is an impartial assessment designed BY industry professionals and employers and the guidelines and assessment are hosted by a non-partial company known as end-point assessment organisations (EPAOs).

As well as successfully completing the EPA, your apprentice may need to complete several additional requirements before completion. This might include mandatory English and maths qualifications.

Once all elements of the apprenticeship are completed, you can achieve either a Pass, Merit or Distinction, and the apprentice will receive their apprenticeship certificate.

A number of employers felt a lack of confidence in the EPA because they hadn’t been through it, and therefore didn’t know what to expect. However, End Point Assessments have been completed for a number of years now, and the process has become much clearer.

We have put together this guide to help employers and learners understand what to expect.

Why you shouldn’t be worried?


The entire purpose of the EPA is to ensure that apprentices are adequately trained and ready to gain their qualifications.

Each apprenticeship includes an end-point assessment plan which describes how the apprentice should be tested against the appropriate criteria using suitable methods. For example, your apprentice may need to complete:

  • a practical assessment
  • an interview
  • a project
  • written and/or multiple choice tests
  • a presentation

Each of our apprenticeship programmes follows different criteria, contact us to learn more.

How to support your apprentice through the End-Point Assessment?

At Next Level, all of our courses are accredited by City & Guilds, or the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) making them our EPAO.

Not only are our learners provided with an initial assessment plan, they are given regular reviews, 1:2:1’s and checkpoints to ensure they are on target to achieve the very best at point of the assessment.

What could you do?

    • Provide study leave and support for the assignments
    • Read the assessment plan and materials given by Next Level
    • Attend the reviews to know where your apprentice is in the programme
    • Ensure you are providing your learner with variety of roles and new knowledge
    • Provide training in other areas such as Health & Safety
    • Encourage personal development
    • Allocate an average of 6 hours a week to CPD/learner development

During and after the assessment


Your apprentice may require some space to complete other assessments, such as our digital marketing synoptic project which required 4 days out of a normal working week!

They might need space for the interviews, time to prep and even a practice run and also time to travel to our academy in order to sit invigilated knowledge tests.

Successful apprentices who pass their assessment will be awarded with a certificate. We will request the certificate on your behalf.

Check with your apprentice how their end-point assessment went. Provide any support they need while waiting for the results.

If your apprentice is successful


Awaiting the call from your tutor can be nerve-wracking, please be mindful that the result can take anywhere up to 10 days to come through.

Over 2021/22 Next Level have a 100% pass rate with 50% of our learners achieving a distinction, 4.5% a merit and 45.5% pass rate. If your apprentice is successful, you should let them know the next steps in their career within your organisation.

Are you looking to promote the learner?

You might consider putting them on another course? Here is the A-Z of apprenticeships that are available, and it’s easy to find a provider using your Digital Account Service (DAS).

Make sure the apprentice has received their certificate; these will be delivered to their home, employer or the academy depending on what works best. You can also nominate your apprentice for the National Apprenticeship Awards and any in-house awards programmes.

If your apprentice is unsuccessful


If the apprentice is unsuccessful in any part of their end-point assessment, you can resist or retake.

A resit involves the apprentice resitting whatever the failed component was. This might be one or more components of their assessment. We will provide extra training, revision sessions and guidance to help the apprentice where possible. And normally the assessor themselves work well with learners to encourage more from them in discussions and interviews. 

A resit or a retake cannot be taken to improve the original grade if an apprentice has passed their end-point assessment. Please also bear in mind, if you fail you apprenticeship the first time, the highest you can achieve will be a pass grade.

If you have any further questions, contact us 0117 9221440