From education to employment

The art of unifying integrated degree assessment and end-point assessment (EPA)

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In the ever-evolving landscape of higher education, the integration of degree assessment and end-point assessment (EPA) for apprenticeships is a growing requirement that universities need to get right to reduce duplication and improve the experience for learners.

On a policy level, since the review of degree apprenticeships in 2021, the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education’s (IfATE) recommendation to implement degree and apprenticeship in tandem was seen as crucial for maintaining the integrity and value of degree apprenticeships.

So how do curriculum designers at universities wed the two assessments together? The challenge lies in crafting an assessment framework that serves dual purposes without compromising on quality. It’s about striking a balance between academic rigour and the practical skills required in the workplace. But how can this be achieved effectively?

This blog considers five steps you might take to review and improve your process:

  1. Align apprenticeship learning objectives with credit module learning outcomes:

Start by identifying the core competencies required for the apprenticeship and map them against the learning outcomes of the degree. This makes sure that every aspect of the learner’s journey is geared towards a cohesive set of outcomes.

  1. Simplify key knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs):

Break down complex apprenticeship standards into clear, manageable component modules. This simplification helps learners focus on what’s essential, aiding in better retention and application of skills.

  1. Develop dual-purpose assessment materials:

Create assessments that serve both the academic module and the end-point assessment. This dual-purpose design reduces duplication and provides a consistent measurement of learner progress.

  1. Craft a unified rubric:

Design an assessment rubric that can be applied to both degree assessments and EPA. This rubric should be transparent, fair, and adaptable, providing clear criteria for grading across both contexts.

  1. Consider practical grading strategies:

Assessors and examiners must be equipped to grade assessments fairly for a joint purpose. This involves understanding the nuances of both academic and professional standards and applying them judiciously during the grading process.

Seamlessly integrating degree assessment and end-point assessment for apprenticeships – Online workshop

If you want to take a deeper dive into this subject, attend the upcoming webinar with assessment specialist and SDN Strategic Associate, Chris Cherry. Curriculum designers will gain valuable insights into developing an effective plan for a unified assessment rubric.

This interactive workshop promises to provide practical considerations, a chance to share ideas and best practices with your peers, and real-world examples to empower you to develop a single point of assessment that is both rigorous and relevant for degree apprenticeships.

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