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Machining technician

This is not the latest approved version of this apprenticeship. View the latest version

This apprenticeship has been retired

Key information

  1. Status: Retired
  2. Reference: ST1305
  3. Version: 1.0
  4. Level: 3
  5. Typical duration to gateway: 42 months
  6. Typical EPA period: 3 months
  7. Maximum funding: £27000
  8. Route: Engineering and manufacturing
  9. Date updated: 17/11/2022
  10. Lars code: 691
  11. EQA provider: Ofqual
  12. Example progression routes:
  13. Review:

    This apprenticeship standard will be reviewed after three years

Print EPA plan

End-point assessment plan

V1.0

Introduction and overview

This document explains the requirements for end-point assessment (EPA) for the machining technician apprenticeship. End-point assessment organisations (EPAOs) must follow this when designing and delivering the EPA.

Machining technician apprentices, their employers and training providers should read this document.

An approved EPAO must conduct the EPA for this apprenticeship. Employers must select an approved EPAO from the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s Register of end-point assessment organisations (RoEPAO).

A full-time apprentice typically spends 42 months on-programme (this means in training before the gateway) working towards competence as a machining technician. All apprentices must spend at least 12 months on-programme. All apprentices must complete the required amount of off-the-job training specified by the apprenticeship funding rules.

This EPA has 3 assessment methods.

The grades available for each assessment method are:

Assessment method 1 - practical demonstration with questions:

  • fail
  • pass

Assessment method 2 - interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Assessment method 3 - knowledge test:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

The result from each assessment method is combined to decide the overall apprenticeship grade. The following grades are available for the apprenticeship:

  • fail
  • pass
  • merit
  • distinction

EPA summary table

On-programme (typically 42 months)
The apprentice must complete training to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) of the occupational standard.

The apprentice must complete training towards English and mathematics qualifications (including those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement) as specified by the apprenticeship funding rules, if required. British Sign Language (BSL) qualifications are an alternative to English qualifications for those who have BSL as their primary language.

The apprentice must complete training towards any other qualifications listed in the occupational standard.

The qualification(s) required are:

Extended diploma in machining knowledge, (City and Guilds or EAL), or

Diploma in advanced manufacturing engineering (machining), (Pearson BTEC, City and Guilds or EAL)

End-point assessment gateway
The employer must be content that the apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard.

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think the apprentice:

  • is working at or above the occupational standard as a machining technician
  • has the evidence required to pass the gateway and is ready to take the EPA

The apprentice must have passed any other qualifications listed in the machining technician occupational standard ST1305.

The qualification(s) required are:

Extended diploma in machining knowledge, City and Guilds or EAL or Diploma in advanced manufacturing engineering (machining), Pearson BTEC, City and Guilds or EAL

The apprentice must have achieved English and maths qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules. This includes those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement. British sign language (BSL) qualifications are an alternative to English qualifications for those who have BSL as their primary language.

For the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence the apprentice must submit a portfolio of evidence.

For the practical assessment with questions the EPAO must discuss with the employer the suitable machine(s) type and components produced by the apprentice in the workplace in the normal course of the role. The EPAO will then use this information to select an appropriate assessment task from a bank of tasks that have been developed in consultation with employers. The apprentice and employer are not to be told the machine type and component to be produced in advance of the assessment.




The apprentice must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

End-point assessment (typically 3 months)
Grades available for each assessment method:

Practical demonstration with questions

  • fail
  • pass

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Knowledge test

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Overall EPA and apprenticeship can be graded:

    • fail
    • pass
    • merit
    • distinction
Professional recognition
This apprenticeship aligns with Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

The apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

This apprenticeship aligns with Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

The apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

This apprenticeship aligns with Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

The apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.





Re-sits and re-takes



  • Re-take and re-sit grade cap: pass
  • Re-sit timeframe: typically 2 months
  • Re-take timeframe: typically 4 months

Duration of end-point assessment period

The EPA is taken in the EPA period. The EPA period starts when the EPAO confirms the gateway requirements have been met and is typically 3 months.

The expectation is that the EPAO will confirm the gateway requirements have been met and the EPA starts as quickly as possible.

EPA gateway

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think their apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard. The apprentice will then enter the gateway. The employer may take advice from the apprentice's training provider(s), but the employer must make the decision.

The apprentice must meet the gateway requirements before starting their EPA.

These are:

  • achieved English and maths qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules. This includes those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement. British sign language (BSL) qualifications are an alternative to English qualifications for those who have BSL as their primary language
  • achieved Extended diploma in machining knowledge, City and Guilds or EAL or Diploma in advanced manufacturing engineering (machining), Pearson BTEC, City and Guilds or EAL
  • for the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence the apprentice must submit: portfolio of evidence

  • for the practical assessment with questions the EPAO must discuss with the employer the suitable machine(s) type and components produced by the apprentice in the workplace in the normal course of the role. The EPAO will then use this information to select an appropriate assessment task from a bank of tasks that have been developed in consultation with employers. The apprentice and employer are not to be told the machine type and component to be produced in advance of the assessment

Where geometric tolerances are appropriate to the specific features these will be set by the EPAO in accordance with the practical demonstration task.

Portfolio of evidence requirements:

The apprentice must compile a portfolio of evidence during the on-programme period of the apprenticeship. It should only contain evidence related to the KSBs that will be assessed by this assessment method. It will typically contain 8 discrete pieces of evidence. Evidence must be mapped against the KSBs. Evidence may be used to demonstrate more than one KSB; a qualitative as opposed to quantitative approach is suggested.

Evidence sources may include:

  • workplace documentation and records, for example:
  • workplace policies and procedures
  • witness statements
  • annotated photographs
  • video clips (maximum total duration 10 minutes); the apprentice must be in view and identifiable

This is not a definitive list; other evidence sources can be included.

The portfolio of evidence should not include reflective accounts or any methods of self-assessment. Any employer contributions should focus on direct observation of performance (for example, witness statements) rather than opinions. The evidence provided should be valid and attributable to the apprentice; the portfolio of evidence should contain a statement from the employer and apprentice confirming this.

The EPAO should not assess the portfolio of evidence directly as it underpins the interview. Independent assessors should review the portfolio of evidence to prepare questions for the interview assessment method. They are not required to provide feedback after this review.

The apprentice must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

Assessment methods

The assessment methods can be delivered in any order.

The result of one assessment method does not need to be known before starting the next.

Practical demonstration with questions

Overview

In a practical demonstration with questions, an independent assessor observes the apprentice completing a task or series of tasks set by the EPAO. The EPAO decides where it takes place. The assessment environment must closely relate to the apprentice’s natural working environment. This allows the apprentice to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. 

Rationale

This EPA assessment method is being used because:

  • while this occupation involves practical tasks best assessed through observation on-the-job, the opportunity to demonstrate the transferable skills required may be limited in a real work context due to accessibility and scheduling issues
  • a practical demonstration has been selected as this enables all apprentices to have the same opportunity to demonstrate their competence against the KSBs
  • questioning allows for the assessment of the breadth and depth of underpinning knowledge against the grading descriptors

  • it is a holistic assessment method

Delivery

The practical demonstration with questions must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the practical demonstration with questions.

The independent assessor must only observe one apprentice at a time to ensure quality and rigour. They must be as unobtrusive as possible.

The EPAO must give an apprentice at least 2 weeks notice of the practical demonstration with questions.

The practical demonstration with questions must take 4.5 hours.

The independent assessor can increase the time of the practical demonstration with questions by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to complete a task or respond to a question if necessary.

The practical demonstration with questions cannot be split, other than for comfort breaks or to allow apprentices to move from one location to another. Where breaks occur, they will not count towards the total EPA time.

EPAOs must manage invigilation of the apprentice during the assessment, to maintain security of the EPA, in line with their malpractice policy. This includes breaks and moving between locations during the working day.

The independent assessor must explain to the apprentice the format and timescales of the practical demonstration with questions before it starts. This does not count towards the assessment time.

The independent assessor must observe the following during the practical assessment:

a. preparing work area; using health and safety controls

b. use of information and documentation, including drawings and risk assessments

c. selecting appropriate tools and work holding devices; prepare and setup either:

  • conventional machine including tool setting or,
  • CNC (computer numerical control) machine including loading and editing programmes. Editing programmes must include adding substantive features to the existing programme as described in the operations listed below.

d. performing machining operation; setting and adjusting operating parameters; selecting speeds and feeds; combining a minimum of 3 different operations to produce complex components with a minimum of 3 different features using one type of machine that could include:

Conventional or CNC lathe

  • screw-cutting internal or external threads
  • bored holes
  • tapered diameters
  • profile forms
  • eccentric features
  • grooves or undercuts

Conventional or CNC Milling machine

  • internal pockets or profiles
  • internal circular or curved profiles
  • external curved profiles
  • holes or features linearly pitched
  • holes or features spaced on a PCD (pitched circle diameter)
  • bored holes
  • treadmilling or tapping
  • keyway or tee shots
  • steps or shoulders
  • open ended shots or enclosed shots and recesses

Conventional or CNC surface or cylindrical grinding machine

  • internal profiles
  • external profiles
  • stepped diameters
  • eccentric diameters
  • flat face
  • stepped faces
  • angled faces
  • profiled faces
  • parallel faces
  • recessed features

e. using equipment to measure and check the machined component with a minimum of 3 features. The manufactured component with a minimum of 3 features must conform to all quality and accuracy standards applicable to the machine and operations being performed and must be verified by the independent assessor. Quality and accuracy standards must include applicable tolerances below:

  • components to be free from false tool cuts, burrs and sharp edges
  • general dimension tolerance. Up to plus or minus 0.25mm or plus or minus 0.010 inch
  • one or more specific dimensional tolerances. Specific dimensional tolerances depend on the type of component and feature and must be agreed with the EPAO in advance. Up to plus or minus 0.05mm or plus or minus 0.002 inch or BS EN 20286 or BS 1916 Grade 7 (BS (british standard) standards limits and fits)
  • reamed and bored holes within H8
  • screw threads BS medium fit
  • geometric tolerances of 0.1mm or 0.004 inch
  • angles and tapers within plus or minus 0.5 degree
  • in grinding operations, flatness and squareness within 0.012mm per 25mm or 0.0005 inch per inch

f. maintaining a safe machine and work area throughout the machining process; checking the condition of tools and equipment identifying and actioning issues

The list above is not exhaustive and the EPAO and the employer should discuss suitable machine types. Tolerances will be set by the EPAO if the machine is not specified.

These activities provide the apprentice with the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

The independent assessor must ask questions. The purpose of the independent assessor's questions will be to support assessment in the following themes:

  • work environment
  • tools and equipment
  • planning
  • machine preparation
  • manufacture complex components with features

The independent assessor's questions will also test the apprentice’s breadth and depth of underpinning knowledge against the grading descriptors.

Questions must be asked after the practical. The total duration of the practical is 4.5 hours and the time for questioning is included in the overall assessment time. The total time for the practical element is 4 hours. The time allocated for questioning is 30 minutes.

The independent assessor must ask at least 5 questions. The independent assessor must use the questions from their EPAO’s question bank or create their own questions in-line with the EPAO’s training.

The independent assessor can ask follow-up questions to clarify answers given by the apprentice. These questions are in addition to the above set number of questions for the practical demonstration with questions and should be kept to a minimum.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the KSBs observed
  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved

The independent assessor must make the grading decision. The practical assessment and responses to questions must be assessed holistically by the independent assessor when they are deciding the grade. 

Assessment location

The practical demonstration with questions will take place in a simulated environment selected by the EPAO (for example the EPAO’s or employer’s premises). The simulated environment must relate to the apprentice’s natural work environment. Equipment and resources needed for the practical demonstration with questions must be provided by the EPAO, who can liaise with the employer to provide these.

Questioning that occurs after the practical demonstration with questions should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.  

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the practical demonstration with questions:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Overview

In the interview, an independent assessor asks the apprentice questions. The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this EPA method.

Rationale

This EPA method is being used because:

  • it allows for assessment of KSBs that do not occur on a predictable or regular basis
  • it is underpinned by a portfolio of evidence, enabling the apprentice to demonstrate the application of skills and behaviours as well as knowledge
  • it allows for testing of responses where there are a number of potential answers that couldn’t be tested through a multiple-choice test
  • it can be conducted remotely, potentially reducing cost

Delivery

The interview must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the interview.

The purpose of the independent assessor's questions will be to cover the following themes:

  • working in a machining environment
  • communications
  • quality assurance
  • fault finding and taking action
  • arranging stock and supplies
  • contributing to continuous improvement

The EPAO must give an apprentice at least 2 weeks notice of the interview.

The independent assessor must have at least 2 week(s) to review the supporting documentation.

The apprentice must have access to their portfolio of evidence during the interview.

The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence. However, the portfolio of evidence is not directly assessed.

The interview must last for 60 minutes. The independent assessor can increase the time of the interview by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to respond to a question if necessary.

The independent assessor must ask at least 10 questions. Follow-up questions are allowed where clarification is required. The independent assessor must use the questions from their EPAO’s question bank or create their own questions in-line with the EPAO’s training.

The independent assessor must make the grading decision. The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • the KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved 

Assessment location

The interview must take place in a suitable venue selected by the EPAO (for example the EPAO’s or employer’s premises).

The interview can be conducted by video conferencing. The EPAO must have processes in place to verify the identity of the apprentice and ensure the apprentice is not being aided.

The interview should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.  

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must ensure that apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
  • training materials
  • administration materials
  • moderation and standardisation materials
  • guidance materials
  • grading guidance
  • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation, training, and moderation.

Knowledge test

Overview

A test is an assessment for asking questions in a controlled and invigilated environment.

Rationale

This EPA method is being used because it:

  • allows for the efficient testing of knowledge where there is a right or wrong answer
  • allows for flexibility in terms of when, where and how it is taken
  • allows larger volumes of apprentices to be assessed at one time

Delivery

This method must be appropriately structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

The knowledge test can be computer or paper based.

The knowledge test will consist of 30 multiple-choice questions.

Multiple-choice questions will have four options, including one correct answer.

The apprentice must be given at least 2 weeks notice of the date and time of the knowledge test.

Test administration

The apprentice must have 60 minutes to complete the test.

The knowledge test is closed book which means that the apprentice cannot refer to reference books or materials whilst taking the test.

The following equipment is allowed to be used during the knowledge test:

scientific calculator

The knowledge test must be taken in the presence of an invigilator who is the responsibility of the EPAO. Specialised (proctor) software can be used if the test can be taken on-line, to ensure the security of the test.

The EPAO must have an invigilation policy setting out how the knowledge test must be conducted. It must state the ratio of apprentices to invigilators for the setting and allow the test to take place in a secure way.

The EPAO must verify the identity of the apprentice.

The EPAO is responsible for the security of the knowledge test including the arrangements for on-line testing. The EPAO must ensure that their security arrangements maintain the validity and reliability of the knowledge test.

Marking

The knowledge test must be marked by independent assessors or markers employed by the EPAO. They must follow a marking scheme produced by the EPAO. Marking by computer is allowed where question types support this.

A correct answer gets 1 mark.

Any incorrect or missing answers get zero marks.

The EPAO is responsible for overseeing the marking of the knowledge test. The EPAO must ensure standardisation and moderation of written response test.

Assessment location

The apprentices must take the knowledge test in a suitably controlled and invigilated environment that is a quiet room, free from distractions and influence. The EPAO must check the venue is suitable.

The knowledge test could take place remotely if the appropriate technology and systems are in place to prevent malpractice. The EPAO must verify the apprentice’s identity and ensure invigilation of the apprentice for example with, and not limited to, 360-degree cameras and screen sharing facilities.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must write a test specification and question bank. The specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting employers. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this. The test specification and questions must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

The EPAO must develop purpose-built question banks and ensure that appropriate quality assurance procedures are in place, for example, considering previous item performance data, item analysis, standardisation, training and moderation. EPAOs must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard.

The EPAO must ensure that apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the knowledge test:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • test specification
    • sample test and mark schemes
    • live tests and mark schemes
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

Grading

Practical demonstration with questions

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme
KSBs
Pass
Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors
Work environment
S1 S2 S5 S20 B1

Priorities health and safety and complies with statutory health and safety regulations and procedures throughout the activity. Applies risk assessment principles and hazard identification processes throughout the activity in line with organisational policy and procedure.  (S1, S5, B1)

Complies with environmental, ethical and sustainability regulations and procedures, throughout the activity, demonstrating the safe disposal of waste created and the efficient use of resources by reusing and recycling materials where possible. (S2)

Maintains a clean, tidy and safe working area and returns any unused resources and consumables following organisational procedure. (S20)

 

Tools and equipment
K10 S17

Selects the tools and equipment required for the activity and checks their condition, identifying and actioning any issues before work commences. (K10, S17)

Planning
K4 K6 S8 S10

Plans and organises the work by reading and interpreting information and documentation and applying planning, time management, workflow and scheduling techniques. (K4, K6, S8, S10)

 

Machine preparation
K9 S3 S12 S13 S14

Selects the machining process and prepares and sets up CNC or conventional machines including tooling and work holding devices to manufacture complex components with features. (S3, S12, S13)

Sets up and adjusts machine operating parameters. For example, setting and editing CNC machine programmes, setting feeds and speeds for roughing and finishing operations in line with manufacturer’s instructions. (K9, S14)

 

Manufacture complex components with features
K11 K14 S4 S15 S16 S18

Operates and adjusts CNC or conventional machines, applying machining operations and techniques to manufacture complex components with features within given tolerances, identifying and resolving any issues that arise during the manufacturing process. (K11, S4, S15, S18)

Uses measurement, calibration and testing equipment to check component manufactured meets specification within given tolerances. (K14, S16)

 

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Fail - does not meet pass criteria

Theme
KSBs
Pass
Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors
Distinction
Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors and all of the distinction descriptors
Working in a machining environment
K18 K22 S22 S24 S25 B2 B4 B6

Explains how they apply ethical principles, and support diversity, equality, and an inclusive culture in the workplace. (K22, B2, B6, S24)

Describes how they apply team working principles to meet their team's work goals. (S25, B4)

Describes how they follow organisational procedures in the start up or warm up, shut down and hand over of machines. Explains how they have escalated issues in the process. (S22)

Explains how machining processes, culture and work values vary between organisations. (K18)

 

Justifies their use of procedures in the start up or warm up, shut down and hand over of machines. (S22)

 

Communications
K15 K16 S7 S21

Describes how they have used verbal communication techniques and machining terminology which reflects the audience. (K15, S21)

Describes how they record information using paper based and electronic techniques relevant to the machining role. (K16, S7)

None.

Quality assurance
K12 K19 S11 B3

Explains how they take responsibility for their work by following and applying inspection and quality assurance principles, processes and procedures to ensure products meet specification. States the escalation and recording procedures when issues are found. (K12, K19, S11, B3)

None.

Fault finding and taking action
K13 S19

Explains how they have used fault finding and diagnostic methods to diagnose and resolve faults. Describes where they have escalated issues they are unable to resolve. (K13, S19)

 

Justifies diagnostic methods they have used in the identification, resolution and reporting of faults and issues. (K13, S19)

Arranging stock and supplies
K23 S6

Describes how they monitor, obtain and check stock and supplies, and how they complete stock returns in line with company procedures. Explains stock availability, value and lead times. (K23, S6)

 

Explains how they have or would manage difficulty with sourcing stock or supplies. (K23, S6)

 

Contributing to continuous improvement
K21 S23 B5

Describes how they have applied continuous improvement techniques and devised suggestions for improvement which add value to the organisation. (K21, S23)

Describes how they reflect on their own practise and seek CPD opportunities. Explaining how they keep up to date with industry developments. (B5)

Justifies continuous improvement suggestions which they have devised. (K21, S23)

 

Knowledge test

Grade Minimum marks required Maximum marks required
Fail 0 20
Pass 21 25
Distinction 26 30

Overall EPA grading

Performance in the EPA determines the apprenticeship grade of:

    • fail
    • pass
    • merit
    • distinction

An independent assessor must individually grade the: practical demonstration with questions and interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence in line with this EPA plan.

The EPAO must combine the individual assessment method grades to determine the overall EPA grade.

If the apprentice fails one or more assessment methods, they will be awarded an overall fail. 

To achieve an overall pass, the apprentice must achieve at least a pass in all the assessment methods. To achieve an overall EPA merit, apprentices must achieve a pass in the multiple-choice test, a pass in the practical demonstration with questions and a distinction in the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence. To achieve an overall EPA distinction, apprentices must achieve a pass in the practical demonstration with questions, a distinction in the multiple-choice test and a distinction in the interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.

Grades from individual assessment methods must be combined in the following way to determine the grade of the EPA overall.

Practical demonstration with questions Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence Knowledge test Overall Grading
Fail Any grade Any grade Fail
Any grade Fail Any grade Fail
Any grade Any grade Fail Fail
Pass Pass Pass Pass
Pass Pass Distinction Pass
Pass Distinction Pass Merit
Pass Distinction Distinction Distinction

Re-sits and re-takes

An apprentice who fails one or more assessment method(s) can take a re-sit or a re-take at their employer’s discretion. The apprentice’s employer needs to agree that a re-sit or re-take is appropriate. A re-sit does not need further learning, whereas a re-take does.

An apprentice should have a supportive action plan to prepare for a re-sit or a re-take.

The employer and EPAO agree the timescale for a re-sit or re-take. A re-sit is typically taken within 2 months of the EPA outcome notification. The timescale for a re-take is dependent on how much re-training is required and is typically taken within 4 months of the EPA outcome notification.

Failed assessment methods must be re-sat or re-taken within a 6-month period from the EPA outcome notification, otherwise the entire EPA will need to be re-sat or re-taken in full.

Re-sits and re-takes are not offered to an apprentice wishing to move from pass to a higher grade.

An apprentice will get a maximum EPA grade of pass for a re-sit or re-take, unless the EPAO determines there are exceptional circumstances.

Roles and responsibilities

Roles Responsibilities

Apprentice

As a minimum, the apprentice should:

  • participate in and complete on-programme training to meet the KSBs as outlined in the occupational standard for a minimum of 12 months
  • undertake 20% off-the-job training as arranged by the employer and training provider
  • understand the purpose and importance of EPA
  • undertake the EPA including meeting all gateway requirements

 

Employer

As a minimum, the apprentice's employer must:

  • select the EPAO and training provider 
  • work with the training provider (where applicable) to support the apprentice in the workplace and to provide the opportunities for the apprentice to develop the KSBs
  • arrange and support a minimum of 20% off-the-job training to be undertaken by the apprentice 
  • decide when the apprentice is working at or above the level required by the occupational standard and so is ready for EPA
  • ensure that all supporting evidence required at the gateway is submitted in accordance with this EPA plan
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA (who, when, where) in a timely manner (including providing access to any employer-specific documentation as required, for example company policies)
  • ensure that the EPA is scheduled with the EPAO for a date and time which allows appropriate opportunity for the apprentice to meet the KSBs
  • ensure the apprentice is well prepared for the EPA
  • require the training provider and EPAO to ensure the EPA is booked in a timely manner

Post-gateway, the employer must: 

  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA (who, when, where) in a timely manner (including providing access to any employer-specific documentation as required, for example company policies)
  • ensure that the EPA is scheduled with the EPAO for a date and time which allows appropriate opportunity for the KSBs to be met
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • ensure the apprentice is given sufficient time away from regular duties to prepare for, and complete all post-gateway elements of the EPA, and that any required supervision during this time (as stated within this EPA plan) is in place
  • where the apprentice is assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the resources used on a daily basis
  • pass the certificate to the apprentice upon receipt from the EPAO

EPAO

As a minimum, the EPAO must: 

  • conform to the requirements of this EPA plan and deliver its requirements in a timely manner
  • conform to the requirements of the Register of end-point assessment organisations (RoEPAO)
  • conform to the requirements of the external quality assurance provider (EQAP) for this apprenticeship
  • understand the occupational standard
  • make all necessary contractual arrangements, including agreeing the price of the EPA
  • develop and produce assessment materials including specifications and marking materials (for example mark schemes, practice materials, training material)
  • appoint suitably qualified and competent independent assessors and oversee their working
  • appoint administrators (and invigilators where required) to administer the EPA as appropriate
  • provide training for independent assessors in terms of good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and grading
  • provide adequate information, advice and guidance documentation to enable apprentices, employers and training providers to prepare for the EPA
  • arrange for the EPA to take place, in consultation with the employer
  • where the apprentice is not assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary
  • develop and provide appropriate assessment recording documentation to ensure a clear and auditable process is in place for providing assessment decisions and feedback to all relevant stakeholders
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider for example, a HEI), there must be no conflict of interest
  • have policies and procedures for internal quality assurance (IQA), and maintain records of regular and robust IQA activity and moderation for external quality assurance (EQA) purposes
  • deliver induction training for independent assessors, and for invigilators and/or markers (where used)
  • undertake standardisation activity on this apprenticeship for all independent assessors before they conduct an EPA for the first time, if the EPA is updated and periodically as appropriate (a minimum of annually)
  • manage invigilation of the apprentice to maintain security of the assessment in line with the EPAO’s malpractice policy
  • verify the identity of the apprentice being assessed
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard

Pre-gateway, the EPAO must: 

  • make all necessary contractual arrangements, including agreeing the price of the EPA
  • provide adequate information, advice and guidance documentation to enable the apprentice, employers and training provider to prepare for the EPA
  • arrange for the EPA to take place, in consultation with the employer

At the gateway, the EPAO must: 

  • confirm all gateway requirements have been met as quickly as possible

Post-gateway, EPAOs must: 

  • where the apprentice is not assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary.

Independent assessor

As a minimum, an independent assessor must: 

  • have the competence to assess the apprentice at the level of this apprenticeship and hold any required qualifications and experience in line with the requirements of the independent assessor as detailed in the IQA section of this EPA plan
  • understand the occupational standard and the requirements of this EPA
  • have, maintain and be able to evidence, up-to-date knowledge and expertise of the subject matter
  • deliver the end-point assessment in-line with this EPA plan
  • comply with the IQA requirements of the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider for example HEI
  • attend induction training
  • attend standardisation events when they begin working for the EPAO, before they conduct an EPA for the first time and a minimum of annually on this apprenticeship 
  • assess each assessment method, as determined by the EPA plan, and without extending the EPA unnecessarily
  • assess against the KSBs assigned to each assessment method, as shown in the mapping of KSBs to assessment methods and as determined by the EPAO, and without extending the EPA unnecessarily
  • make all grading decisions
  • record and report all assessment outcome decisions, for each apprentice, following instructions and using assessment recording documentation provided by the EPAO, in a timely manner
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard
  • mark open (constructed) test answers accurately according to the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures

Training provider

As a minimum, the training provider should:

  • work with the employer and support the apprentice during the off-the-job training to provide the opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours as listed in the occupational standard
  • conduct training covering any knowledge, skill or behaviour requirement agreed as part of the Commitment Statement or the Individual Learning Plan
  • monitor the apprentice’s progress during any training provider led on-programme learning
  • advise the employer, upon request, on the apprentice’s readiness for EPA
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA. Where the training provider is the EPAO for example HEI, there must be procedures in place to mitigate against any conflict of interest

Marker

As a minimum, the marker should:

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider in all instances including when the EPAO is the training provider for example HEI
  • mark test answers accurately according to the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures

Invigilator

As a minimum, the invigilators should:

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in all instances, including when the EPAO is the training provider for example HEI
  • invigilate and supervise apprentices during tests and in breaks during assessment methods to prevent malpractice in accordance with the EPAO’s invigilation procedures

Reasonable adjustments

The EPAO must have reasonable adjustments arrangements for the EPA.

This should include:

  • how an apprentice qualifies for reasonable adjustment
  • what reasonable adjustments may be made

Adjustments must maintain the validity, reliability and integrity of the EPA as outlined in this EPA plan.

Internal quality assurance (IQA)

Internal quality assurance refers to how the EPAO ensures valid, consistent and reliable EPA decisions. The EPAO must adhere to the requirements within the roles and responsibilities section and:

  • have effective and rigorous quality assurance systems and procedures that ensure fair, reliable and consistent EPA regardless of employer, place, time or independent assessor
  • appoint independent assessors who are competent to deliver the EPA and who:
    • have recent relevant experience of the occupation or sector to at least occupational level 3 gained in the last 3 years or significant experience of the occupation or sector
  • operate induction training for anyone involved in the delivery or assessment of the EPA
  • provide training for independent assessors in good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and making grading decisions
  • provide ongoing training for markers and invigilators
  • provide standardisation activity for this apprenticeship standard for all independent assessors:
    • before they conduct an EPA for the first time
    • if the EPA is updated
    • periodically as appropriate (a minimum of annually)
  • conduct effective moderation of EPA decisions and grades
  • conduct appeals where required, according to the EPAO’s appeals procedure, reviewing and making final decisions on EPA decisions and grades
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in HEI.

Value for money

Affordability of the EPA will be aided by using at least some of the following:

  • completing applicable assessment methods online (for example computer-based assessment)
  • utilising digital remote platforms to conduct applicable assessment methods
  • using the employer’s premises
  • conducting assessment methods on the same day

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with:

Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for Engineering Technician (EngTech)

Mapping of KSBs to assessment methods

Knowledge Assessment methods
K1

Awareness of health and safety regulations, relevance to the occupation and the Machinist's responsibilities. Health and Safety at Work Act; Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH); Working in Confined Spaces; Lone Working; Provision of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER); Electrical Safety and Compliance; Noise Regulation; Slips Trips and Falls; Display Screen Equipment; The Reporting of Injuries, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR), Manual Handling, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), risk assessments and method statements and the implications of not adhering to guidelines and procedures.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K2

Awareness of hazardous waste regulations; Recyclable materials and waste disposal procedures and the implications of not complying with regulations and procedures.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K3

Awareness of environment and sustainability regulations, relevance to the occupation and the Machining Technician's responsibilities. Environmental Protection Act; Sustainability; Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE); Energy monitoring; Data logging to optimise energy performance; The Climate Change Agreements; Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC).

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K4

Engineering representations, drawings, graphical information and specifications.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K5

Engineering mathematical and scientific principles: calculations, conversions, flow rates and equipment sizing.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K6

Planning techniques, time management, workflow, work scheduling, work plans, documents and work categorisation systems.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K7

Engineering materials and their structure, properties and characteristics; impact on use, how and why engineering materials can fail.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K8

Awareness of engineering standards and regulations: British Standards (BS); International Organisation for Standardisation standards (ISO); European Norm (EN); Standard Operating Procedures (SOP).

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K9

Tooling and work-holding devices: purpose and operation of devices for carrying out complex machining tasks.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K10

Engineering machining processes tools and equipment: Milling; Turning; Grinding; Electro Discharge Machine (EDM); Gear Cutting.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K11

Machining operations and techniques to produce complex components.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K12

Quality assurance: principles, practices and record keeping.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K13

Fault finding, diagnostic methods and techniques for identifying engineering and manufacturing problems. Escalation techniques.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K14

Use and application of measurement, calibration and testing equipment.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
K15

Communication techniques: verbal. Machining industry terminology.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K16

Documentation - electronic and paper.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K17

Housekeeping and maintenance practices and techniques: planned, preventative and predictive methods, frequency, and reactive activities.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K18

How organisations vary regarding their work, culture, values and production processes in the Machining industry.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K19

Inspection processes and procedures; documentation and escalation.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K20

Technological development and innovation in the machining sector; Industry 4.0; digitalisation.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
K21

Continuous improvement principles and practices: Lean; Six Sigma; Kaizen.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K22

Equality, diversity and inclusion requirements in the workplace.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
K23

Stock and services considerations. Availability, stock lead times. Correct handling. Stock value. Faulty stock and returns process.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
Skill Assessment methods
S1

Comply with statutory health and safety regulations and procedures.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S2

Comply with environmental, ethical and sustainability regulations and procedures: safe disposal of waste, re-cycling or re-use of materials and efficient use of resources.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S3

Prepare and set up conventional or CNC machines.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S4

Operate and adjust conventional or CNC machines.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S5

Apply risk assessment and hazard identification processes and procedures in the work area.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S6

Monitor, obtain and check stock and supplies, and complete stock returns.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S7

Record information - paper based or electronic. For example, energy usage, job sheets, risk assessments, equipment service records, test results, handover documents and manufacturers' documentation, asset management records, work sheets, checklists, waste environmental records and any legal reporting requirements.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S8

Read and interpret information. For example, data and documentation used to produce machined components.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S9

Apply engineering, mathematical and scientific principles.

Back to Grading
Knowledge test
S10

Plan and organise own work and resources.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S11

Follow and apply inspection, quality assurance procedures and processes.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S12

Select machining process.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S13

Select and setup tooling and work holding devices.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S14

Set and adjust machine operating parameters. For example, setting feeds and speeds for roughing and finishing operations, downloading and editing programmes when using a CNC machine tool.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S15

Apply machining operations and techniques to produce complex components with features. For example, parallel; stepped; angular diameters and faces; grooves; slots; recesses and undercuts; radii and chamfers; internal and external forms and profiles; reamed; bored; drilled and electro eroded holes; internal and external screw threads.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S16

Measure and check components.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S17

Select and check condition of tools and equipment. Identify issues, resolve and take action as needed.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S18

Identify and action issues in the manufacturing process.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S19

Apply fault-finding and diagnostic testing procedures to identify faults. Diagnose and resolve issues. Escalate issues.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S20

Maintain the work area and return any resources and consumables.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
S21

Communicate with others verbally. For example, colleagues and stakeholders.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S22

Follow machine shut down, safe isolation, handover, start up or warm up procedures. Escalate issues.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S23

Apply continuous improvement techniques. Devise suggestions for improvement.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S24

Apply ethical principles.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
S25

Apply team working principles.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
Behaviour Assessment methods
B1

Prioritise health and safety.

Back to Grading
Practical demonstration with questions
B2

Act ethically.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B3

Take responsibility for work.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B4

Team-focus to meet work goals, for example, work effectively with others, resolves issues in discussion with others.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B5

Committed to continued professional development (CPD) to maintain and enhance competence in their own area of practice.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence
B6

Support an equality, diverse and inclusive culture.

Back to Grading
Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence

Mapping of KSBs to grade themes

Practical demonstration with questions - PracticalAssessment

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Work environment

S1 S2 S5 S20
B1

N/A

Comply with statutory health and safety regulations and procedures. (S1)

Comply with environmental, ethical and sustainability regulations and procedures: safe disposal of waste, re-cycling or re-use of materials and efficient use of resources. (S2)

Apply risk assessment and hazard identification processes and procedures in the work area. (S5)

Maintain the work area and return any resources and consumables. (S20)

Prioritise health and safety. (B1)

Tools and equipment
K10
S17

Engineering machining processes tools and equipment: Milling; Turning; Grinding; Electro Discharge Machine (EDM); Gear Cutting. (K10)

Select and check condition of tools and equipment. Identify issues, resolve and take action as needed. (S17)

N/A

Planning
K4 K6
S8 S10

Engineering representations, drawings, graphical information and specifications. (K4)

Planning techniques, time management, workflow, work scheduling, work plans, documents and work categorisation systems. (K6)

Read and interpret information. For example, data and documentation used to produce machined components. (S8)

Plan and organise own work and resources. (S10)

N/A

Machine preparation
K9
S3 S12 S13 S14

Tooling and work-holding devices: purpose and operation of devices for carrying out complex machining tasks. (K9)

Prepare and set up conventional or CNC machines. (S3)

Select machining process. (S12)

Select and setup tooling and work holding devices. (S13)

Set and adjust machine operating parameters. For example, setting feeds and speeds for roughing and finishing operations, downloading and editing programmes when using a CNC machine tool. (S14)

N/A

Manufacture complex components with features
K11 K14
S4 S15 S16 S18

Machining operations and techniques to produce complex components. (K11)

Use and application of measurement, calibration and testing equipment. (K14)

Operate and adjust conventional or CNC machines. (S4)

Apply machining operations and techniques to produce complex components with features. For example, parallel; stepped; angular diameters and faces; grooves; slots; recesses and undercuts; radii and chamfers; internal and external forms and profiles; reamed; bored; drilled and electro eroded holes; internal and external screw threads. (S15)

Measure and check components. (S16)

Identify and action issues in the manufacturing process. (S18)

N/A

Interview underpinned by a portfolio of evidence - Discussion

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Working in a machining environment
K18 K22
S22 S24 S25
B2 B4 B6

How organisations vary regarding their work, culture, values and production processes in the Machining industry. (K18)

Equality, diversity and inclusion requirements in the workplace. (K22)

Follow machine shut down, safe isolation, handover, start up or warm up procedures. Escalate issues. (S22)

Apply ethical principles. (S24)

Apply team working principles. (S25)

Act ethically. (B2)

Team-focus to meet work goals, for example, work effectively with others, resolves issues in discussion with others. (B4)

Support an equality, diverse and inclusive culture. (B6)

Communications
K15 K16
S7 S21

Communication techniques: verbal. Machining industry terminology. (K15)

Documentation - electronic and paper. (K16)

Record information - paper based or electronic. For example, energy usage, job sheets, risk assessments, equipment service records, test results, handover documents and manufacturers' documentation, asset management records, work sheets, checklists, waste environmental records and any legal reporting requirements. (S7)

Communicate with others verbally. For example, colleagues and stakeholders. (S21)

N/A

Quality assurance
K12 K19
S11
B3

Quality assurance: principles, practices and record keeping. (K12)

Inspection processes and procedures; documentation and escalation. (K19)

Follow and apply inspection, quality assurance procedures and processes. (S11)

Take responsibility for work. (B3)

Fault finding and taking action
K13
S19

Fault finding, diagnostic methods and techniques for identifying engineering and manufacturing problems. Escalation techniques. (K13)

Apply fault-finding and diagnostic testing procedures to identify faults. Diagnose and resolve issues. Escalate issues. (S19)

N/A

Arranging stock and supplies
K23
S6

Stock and services considerations. Availability, stock lead times. Correct handling. Stock value. Faulty stock and returns process. (K23)

Monitor, obtain and check stock and supplies, and complete stock returns. (S6)

N/A

Contributing to continuous improvement
K21
S23
B5

Continuous improvement principles and practices: Lean; Six Sigma; Kaizen. (K21)

Apply continuous improvement techniques. Devise suggestions for improvement. (S23)

Committed to continued professional development (CPD) to maintain and enhance competence in their own area of practice. (B5)

Contact us about this apprenticeship

Employers involved in creating the standard: AESSEAL, Apex Pumps, AWE, Babcock International, BEP-Surface Technologies, Blackrow, Borg Warner, Collins Aerospace, DS Machining, Fort Vale Engineering, JCB, Jaguar Land Rover, McBraida, Manufax, Rolls-Royce, Scott Aerospace, Techni Grind, Xtrac

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.1 Standard and end-point assessment plan revised 24/11/2022 Not set Not set
1.0 Approved for delivery 09/11/2022 23/11/2022 Not set

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