Sam Sleight, Head of Marketing, Brooks and Kirk (Assessor Training) Ltd

What is the Difference Between an Assessor and an End Point Assessor (EPA)?

Sam Sleight explains the changes that are happening to Apprenticeships and the different roles of an Assessor:

Before 2017, the question "How to become an assessor?" was a relatively simple one to answer. And in many ways, it still is.

However, now that there are so many websites saying different things and two new types of assessors, the answer can vary depending on your situation. 

In this article, I am going to take a look at difference between the various assessor roles that exist now and the factors you need to take into account when looking at becoming that type of assessor. 

Types of Assessors

There are basically 3 main types of assessors. These are: 

  • NVQ Assessors
  • On-Programme (OP) Assessors / Trainer
  • End Point Assessors

NVQ and On-Programme Assessors

The roles and responsibilities of both NVQ assessors and on-programme assessors are extremely similar.

In fact, in any apprenticeship where the apprentice is required to complete a vocational qualification, the on-programme assessor is also an NVQ assessor and vice versa.

OP assessors are responsible for supporting an apprentice through the 'On-Programme' element of their apprenticeship.

They carry out assessments and facilitate training where necessary, to gather the evidence required from the apprentice to ensure that they meet the standards and are ready for the end-point assessment.

For most apprenticeships, this also involves the completion of a vocational qualification. 

Similarly, an NVQ assessor also carries out assessments and provides training where necessary to evidence the learning outcomes from all of their learner's NVQ units. 

End Point Assessors

The role of an end-point assessor differs quite significantly to the two aforementioned types of assessors.

Whereas NVQ and OP assessors need to guide and support learners to help them achieve certain standards, end-point assessors just carry out one-off synoptic assessments.

The assessor scores the apprentice based on their performance during the End-Point Assessment (EPA); these scores then determine what grade they get on their apprenticeship. 

For anyone that wants to become an NVQ or On-Programme assessor, you should find our recently updated post on ‘how to become an assessor’ worth a read. It covers absolutely everything you possibly need to know.’

If on the other hand, you would just like to find out more about end-point assessment then here’s everything you need to know about becoming an End-Point assessor.

But just before you go, there are a couple of things that we would just like to clarify regarding EPA and the new apprenticeships…

Worth knowing!

As I’m sure you will have noticed, there will now be two assessors involved in every apprenticeship. However, they won’t both be referred to as assessors.

In the context of apprenticeships, the End-Point Assessor will be referred to as the ‘assessor’ and the person responsible for the delivery and assessing of the learner’s vocational qualifications (the on-programme element), will be referred to as the ‘trainer’.

Also, I will end the article on quite an important note; End-Point Assessments only occur in apprenticeships.

A lot of people that we have spoken to thought that EPAs were part of all vocational courses. That is not the case. If you are just looking to assess NVQs/BTECs as standalone qualifications, then you don’t need to concern yourself with End-Point Assessments.

We hope this article has helped you to identify your next steps, whatever they may be!

Sam Sleight, Head of Marketing, Brooks and Kirk (Assessor Training) Ltd

About Sam Sleight: Sam is the Marketing Manager at Brooks and Kirk. Whenever he’s not working away on websites, managing advertising campaigns or creating new content, he’s probably watching football. But aside from his passion for football and Chelsea in particular, he is also passionate about helping those that are eager to start a new career in the FE industry to receive the best advice, guidance and support possible.

About Brooks and Kirk: Brooks and Kirk are an independent training provider with over 20 years’ experience in delivering assessor and internal quality assurance qualifications. They have loads of great content on their assessor training website for anyone that is interested in becoming an assessor. If you are interested in finding out more here is a link to the Brooks and Kirk assessor training website.

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