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Section 6: Apprentice Support and Success

Published for 2021-22


6.1 Initial Assessment6.4 Gateway and End-Point Assessment
6.2 Planning Apprenticeship Training6.5 Apprentice File
6.3 Progress Monitoring and Tripartite Reviews 

1.Every apprentice will benefit from an integrated package of support that identifies their specific needs, adapts their apprenticeship training and programme to those needs, and supports them to fulfil their potential in achieving a successful outcome. 
2.Academic departments must design degree apprenticeship programmes to incorporate this package of support, using the requirements set out below as a baseline.

6.1 Initial Assessment

1.Apprenticeship funding should not be used to pay for, or accredit, existing knowledge, skills and behaviours.
2.Initial assessment checks that the degree apprenticeship is an appropriate programme for the apprentice and ensures they will not undertake training they do not need.
3.Before an apprenticeship is planned and begins, the academic department must undertake an initial assessment of an applicant’s prior learning to establish their starting point, or baseline, and inform how much of the apprenticeship training and the programme they require.
4.In addition to assessing the applicant’s prior learning, the academic department must also collect evidence that the applicant has a qualification in Maths and English at level 2 at a minimum. 
5.The process and template for initial assessment in Annex 11.4 should always be used unless otherwise agreed by Academic Services for a particular programme.
6.Staff with responsibility for undertaking initial assessments on behalf of UCL must be familiar with and operate with the boundaries of UCL’s policy on the Recognition of Prior Learning in Chapter 1, Section 2.8 of the Academic Manual
7.Where prior attainment, knowledge and skills are identified, the costs of training must be adjusted.

6.2 Planning Apprenticeship Training

1.Prior to an apprentice commencing their apprenticeship training, the following must be developed, agreed and added to the apprentice’s file:
 a.A Commitment Statement
 b.An Individual Learning Plan (ILP)
2.UCL’s standard templates for Commitment Statements and Individual Learning Plans (Annex 11.5) should be used unless otherwise agreed in advance with Academic Services.
3.Where a signature is required, this must be supplied before a document can be considered to be in place and active.
4.To enable apprenticeship training to be planned in line with the expectations of the apprentice’s employer and UCL, an Employer Contract must be signed in advance of any applications being received and must be valid for the duration of the apprenticeship training being planned.
5.Where a change in circumstances, such as a break in learning and interruption of study, impacts an apprentice’s ability to complete their apprenticeship training according to their Commitment Statement and Individual Learning Plan, their training should be replanned, and updated versions of these documents agreed and added to their file.

6.3 Progress Monitoring and Tripartite Reviews

1.The engagement and progress of individual apprentices must be monitored through robust departmental systems and support structures, which should be designed in advance of the programme being delivered and regularly evaluated through quality monitoring and review processes. 
 Tripartite Reviews
2.Tripartite reviews between the apprentice, employer and UCL ensure that all parties are clear on the apprentice’s progress towards the targets set out in their apprentice commitment statement and learning plan.
3.Tripartite reviews should provide an opportunity for apprentices and employers to offer feedback on their experience of the degree apprenticeship programme and the apprenticeship training more generally.
4.Tripartite reviews may identify and should note concerns about the quality of the employer’s training or support for an individual apprentice, including the time being protected for off-the-job training, but there must also be a mechanism for collating and addressing such concerns through regular corporate-level engagement between the academic department and the employer.
5.Tripartite reviews must be held every three months throughout the degree apprenticeship programme and apprentices are required to engage with each review fully.
6.Tripartite review meetings should be held in-person where possible or alternatively online via a video call where this is not possible, but they must always be ‘face-to-face’ to enable a more comprehensive review of the apprentice’s progress, engagement and wellbeing.
7.All apprentices are required to engage with regular tripartite reviews throughout their programme.
8.A summary of each tripartite review must be agreed with all parties and documented in the Apprentice File, and should include any areas of concern and the actions agreed to address these areas of concern ready to be monitored through subsequent reviews.
9.It is the responsibility of UCL and the academic department to plan, arrange and document tripartite reviews.

6.4 Gateway and End-Point Assessment

1.UCL offers two types of degree apprenticeship:
 a.Integrated degree apprenticeships where UCL is both the apprenticeship training provider and the end-point assessment organisation. 
 b.Non-integrated degree apprenticeships where UCL is the apprenticeship training provider but contracts with another end-point assessment organisation.
 Gateway
2.The assessment strategy for each degree apprenticeship programme must define the requirements to be met before an apprentice can proceed to the end-point assessment and the process for confirming that these requirements have been met, known as the Gateway.
3.The Gateway must meet the requirements of the assessment plan for the relevant Apprenticeship Standard and confirm the employer is satisfied that the apprentice is already consistently working at or above the level of knowledge, skills and behaviours set out in the occupational standard.
4.An apprentice must only be allowed to proceed to the end-point assessment once they have met the requirements of the Gateway, including evidence that they have competence in Maths and English at level 2 at a minimum.
 End-Point Assessment
5.Each degree apprenticeship programme concludes with a holistic and independent assessment of the knowledge, skills and behaviours that have been developed throughout an apprenticeship, known as the end-point assessment (EPA).
6.The end-point assessment is specified in the assessment plan for the relevant Apprenticeship Standard and must not be deviated away from.
7.The end-point assessment is administered by an end-point assessment organisation.
8.For integrated degree apprenticeships, UCL is the end-point assessment organisation.
 a.The assessment strategy for the degree apprenticeship programme must be designed to ensure that the final assessments meet the requirements of the assessment plan for the relevant Assessment Standard, and this should be confirmed through the programme approval and amendment process.
 b.Assessments that contribute to the end-point assessment must be conducted by someone who has not been involved in the delivery of the apprenticeship.
 c.By meeting the requirements for the award of the intended qualification, the apprentice should have met the requirements to pass an integrated degree apprenticeship, and the Boards of Examiners should assure itself of this.
9.For non-integrated degree apprenticeships, the academic department must secure the services of a third-party provider included on the ESFA’s register of end-point assessment organisations.
 a.A contract must be in place with the end-point assessment organisation in good time before the first apprentices are due to pass through the Gateway.
 b.Academic departments are responsible for procuring the services of and leading UCL’s engagement with the end-point assessment organisation within the requirements of relevant UCL policies, including those on procurement and data protection.
 c.Academic Services and Legal Services must be consulted on the draft contract.

6.5 Apprentice File

1.Alongside the core Student Record held in Portico and the apprentice’s assessments, the following form part of the Apprentice File that must be maintained for each apprentice by their academic department:
 a.Initial Assessment
 b.Apprenticeship Agreement between the employer and apprentice
 c.Commitment Statement and Individual Learning Plan
 d.Tripartite Review Forms
2.The apprentice and/or employer must confirm the information they provide is correct when it is collected and the Apprentice File must include evidence of this, such as a signature, in a scanned or digital format.
3.Employer Contracts and contracts with end-point assessment organisations must be retained and stored by academic departments alongside Apprentice Files.
4.Apprentice Files, Employer Contracts and contracts with end-point assessment organisations must be kept up to date, readily available for audit and inspection and retained within the parameters of UCL’s Records Retention Schedule.
5.Apprentice Files Employer Contracts and contracts with end-point assessment organisations constitute the evidence pack required by the ESFA.