So what does an apprenticeship consist of?
In May 2017, Apprenticeship Standards came into being. This is sometimes known as Trailblazer Apprenticeships and has completely replaced frameworks since September 2020.
To check the latest standards, head over to the Institute for Apprenticeships website.
Standards are more akin to a job description. Each role profile describes what the apprentice is likely to be doing. It also lists the Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours (KSB’s) that will need to be recorded before progressing through a gateway.
Understand the impact your service provision has on the wider organisation and the value it adds (Customer Service)
Understanding of general engineering/manufacturing mathematical and scientific principles, methods, techniques, graphical expressions, symbols formulae and calculations used by engineering technicians (Engineering Technician)
Find solutions that meet your organisations needs as well as the customer requirements (Customer Service)
Undertaking the work activity using the correct processes, procedures and equipment (Engineering Technician)
Personally commit to and take ownership for actions to resolve customer issues to the satisfaction of the customer and your organisation (Customer Service)
Focus on quality and problem solving. Follow instructions and guidance, demonstrates attention to detail, follow a logical approach to problem solving and seek opportunities to improve quality, speed and efficiency (Engineering Technician)
Some standards will list a mandatory qualification, others won’t. We will devise a programme of learning that will meet the KSB’s. We may include additional qualifications or individual units that we feel will be beneficial.
So for instance, the Engineering Technician Apprenticeship specifies qualifications, that we deliver, whereas the IT Technical Salesperson does not. In this case we will devise a programme of learning that will allow the apprentice to meet the KSB’s and deliver qualifications around that.
Semester: Learning & Development Ltd deliver learning using the Moodle Learning Management System (LMS). This gives the apprentice a structured approach to learning and access 24/7. The assessment is recorded via the industry standard OneFile e-portfolio. Employers will also have an account so they can access their apprentice’s work and take part in reviews. OneFile is also used to record Off The Job (OJT) Training time and progress.
Each Role also has an Assessment Plan. This details how the evidence will be evaluated and when. Some apprenticeships have a midway gateway, where a certain amount of knowledge(such as level 2 qualification) has to be achieved and agreed with the employer. The apprentice then continues until all the KSB’s have been completed and can progress to the End Point Assessment (EPA).
End Point Assessment
Each apprenticeship has a defined End Point Assessment which will be carried out by a separate company than the training provider. We can source one for you, or use one which you already have a agreement with.
Typically, the EPA will consist of 3 things:
1-Portfolio based validation Interview – this is where the EPA will interview the candidate, the basis of which will be the portfolio of evidence on OneFile.
2-Competence Assessment – this may take the form of a project or task under supervision of the EPA
3-Employer Validation – where the employer signs off that the apprentice has completed all the KSB’s.
Each standard is slightly different in the approach to EPA, some even have an exam that needs to be passed as well as the portfolio.
The basic apprenticeship at level 2 is on a par with GCSE levels. In Wales it is called the Foundation Apprenticeship. Typically this will give the learner an insight into the industry and allow them to perform basic routine tasks.
The level 3 Advanced apprentice will already have achieved qualifications or an apprenticeship at level 2 and will learn more in depth knowledge and skills in their industry. When complete they will be the team leaders and typically rise quickly in their chosen industry, compared to those that do not follow an apprenticeship route.
A level 4, Higher Apprenticeship is for those who have level 3 knowledge and skills, possibly some A’ Levels and are looking to become leaders in their industry. They will follow a level 4 program which is equivalent in depth to the 1st year of a university Bachelors Degree course.
It is possible for learners to progress through all the levels. It will take time, patience and hard work but all apprenticeships that are worth doing will require this input.
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