One really common subject that our learners get confused by is the difference between an NVQ Assessor and an End-Point Assessor (EPA). Now a couple of years ago, an EPA didn’t even exist, and there was only one Assessor involved in apprenticeship. So it isn’t surprising that there is often confusion between the two different roles. Let’s have a look at both of these two different roles separately.
Just to confuse things even more, there are actually 3 types of assessors:
- NVQ/SVQ Assessors
- On-Programme (OP) Assessors
- End-Point Assessors
NVQ and On-Programme Assessors
We didn’t want to leave the OP Assessors out, so we have included them too! The roles and responsibilities of the NVQ and OP Assessors are fairly similar though. Actually, when an apprentice completes a vocational qualification, the on-programme Assessor doubles up as an NVQ Assessor, and vice-versa.
An on-programme Assessor supports an apprentice through the ‘on-programme’ element of their apprenticeship. They carry out assessments and training, gathering evidence from the apprentice. An OP Assessor is also responsible for ensuring the learner meets the standards, and is therefore ready for the End-Point Assessment.
Going back to the NVQ Assessor, they also carry out assessments and training to evidence the learning outcomes from the units of the learner’s NVQ. They help to guide the learner through every step of their apprenticeship.
The role of an End-Point Assessor is completely different to both an NVQ Assessor and an OP Assessor. An EPA carries out a one-off synoptic assessment at the end of the apprenticeship. They should be completely independent to both the apprentice and the learning institution, and are referred to as Independent End-Point Assessors (IEPAs).
The IEPA grades the apprentice based solely on their performance during the EPA. This grade then determines the overall grade they receive on their apprenticeship.
It is very important that the on-programme Assessor knows about the EPA, even though they won’t be taking the apprentice through it. By having this knowledge, it will allow them to answer any questions a learner may have about the EPA. It will also help them to prepare the apprentice fully – they could carry out mock assessments to run through it with their learner.
We hope this has helped to clearly explain the different roles of the NVQ Assessor and the End-Point Assessor. One thing that is worth mentioning is that End-Point Assessments are unique to apprenticeships. They are not part of all vocational courses – if you are looking to assess NVQs or BTECs as standalone qualifications, you don’t need to worry about the EPA.
If you would like any help on choosing the right assessor qualification, please feel free to email our team on firstname.lastname@example.org, or give us a call on 01205 805 155. We have also written a blog on choosing the right assessor qualification, which will give you lots more information on the topic.