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What is End-point Assessment (EPA) in apprenticeships?

Struggling to understand what End-Point Assessment is? Check out our guide and get clarity on the process and how you fit in as an employer.

The End-point Assessment (EPA) is the final test that apprentices need to pass in order to meet a recognised standard. This assessment can take up to three months and is done by an independent organisation known as an End-Point Assessment organisation. In our case, we work with two, the CIM and Innovative Awarding.

During the EPA, apprentices are evaluated on the skills, knowledge, and behaviours (KSBs) they learned during their training. The assessment demonstrates their competency and can be different for each apprenticeship standard.

How does End-point Assessment work?

The EPA begins with a planning meeting involving the employer, apprentice, and training provider. This is conducted to plan the required activities associated with the standards EPA requirements. For instance, on the Multi-Channel Marketer, apprentices will be required to complete a workplace project which they will have up to 12 weeks to complete. This project has to meet a list of pre-defined KSBs.  Before starting the EPA, apprentices need to achieve Functional Skills in English and maths (or have a level 4/C or above in GCSE maths and English or an equivalent qualification).

A typical End-point Assessment may include:

Different standards will utilise different assessment methods. However, here are some of the typical methods used within marketing standards:

  • A multiple-choice test on what the apprentice has learned;
  • A professional discussion to confirm competency;
  • Review of a portfolio of evidence;
  • A workplace project was completed after gateway;
  • An interview or presentation element.


Older standards

Older standards like Digital Marketer still use an EPA process but have multiple components that are submitted at gateway and assessed during EPA. Components consist of an Employer Reference, a portfolio of evidence, and a Synoptic Project. These are all completed before an interview takes place. You can find out more about the differences between Digital Marketer and Multi-Channel Marketer here.

How does grading work?

In more modern standards, apprentices can receive a pass, merit, distinction, or referral grade. Arguably, the newer KSB-based standards are tougher to pass and we’ve seen more referrals as a result.


Managing End-point Assessment

As an employer, you’ll likely be involved in the End-Point Assessment both directly and indirectly. You should actively work with your learner and training provider to plan and prepare your learner for their EPA. Additionally, at The Marketing Trainer, we support you every step of the End-point Assessment (EPA) process. If you have any questions about EPA, feel free to get in touch at

Let’s grow your team and build a brighter future for your business

Get in contact with one of our team to find out more and discover how your business can grow through apprenticeships!

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