Chris Jones, HMI, Specialist Adviser for apprenticeships, on recording the progress that apprentices make.

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The Institute for Apprenticeships is rising the variety of apprenticeship requirements obtainable to employers and apprentices. These adjustments have been launched alongside the apprenticeship levy. At current, when an apprenticeship commonplace isn’t obtainable, apprentices full the technical and vocational {qualifications} related to an apprenticeship framework.

Now, a brand new mannequin of apprenticeship is rising and the construction is altering, as I wrote about in a earlier weblog. This method is way more occupationally particular and is instantly linked to the wants of employers.

Most apprenticeship requirements don’t include {qualifications}. They deal with the information, expertise and behaviours anticipated of the apprentices. An end-point evaluation, particular to the apprenticeship commonplace, validates the usual.

Apprenticeship frameworks

We all know that many frameworks will disappear in 2020. Apprenticeship requirements will change the frameworks as a part of the apprenticeship reform programme. Most apprentices work at ranges 2 and three, with round 11% of apprentices working at degree 4 and above. The proportion working at larger ranges is rising as a result of over 40% of requirements are for larger and diploma degree apprenticeships. For areas like enterprise administration there isn’t any alternative apprenticeship commonplace at degree 2.

It is clear from the vary of frameworks which might be nonetheless obtainable, that many apprentices working at ranges 2 and three will proceed to work in the direction of an apprenticeship framework for a while, and therefore will proceed to finish nationally recognised {qualifications}. Suppliers and inspectors can evaluate qualification achievement charges and search for patterns and adjustments to assist them determine how effectively apprentices are doing.

As a result of most apprenticeship requirements haven’t any {qualifications}, inspectors and suppliers have to be clear concerning the other ways of measuring achievement. As inspectors, we have to take into account what these adjustments imply for inspection follow.

Two apprentices concentrate on sawing a piece of wood

Apprenticeship requirements

The present inspection framework helps us deal with the achievements of apprentices working to a typical. If an apprenticeship commonplace doesn’t have {qualifications}, how will we measure achievement?

Implications for suppliers

Suppliers want to guage what apprentices learn about, and might do, after they begin their apprenticeship. They should measure the apprentice’s progress towards the information, expertise and behaviours set out in the usual and evaluation plan. We see suppliers asking apprentices to notice their occupational information, expertise and their degree of confidence as they begin their apprenticeship, adopted by a expertise take a look at in English and arithmetic.

This method units a ‘baseline’ for suppliers, employers and apprentices. How effectively apprentices achieve information and develop and enhance expertise all signifies progress. This helps to point out that apprentices enhance over time.

Accomplished models or modules of {qualifications} aren’t the one indicators of progress. On their very own, these inform us little concerning the required information, expertise and behaviours. We need to see if leaders and managers plan the apprenticeship with employers. Do they know what they’re searching for and assessing at every progress assessment?

For instance, what ought to an apprentice learn about or do by their first progress assessment? What variations will we count on to see on the second assessment? What expertise should apprentices present by the final assessment and earlier than the end-point evaluation?

An apprentice brushing a dog.

Recording progress

Once they have a transparent plan for his or her apprenticeships, suppliers and employers can report and measure apprentices’ progress. Measured beginning factors and set expectations can present how apprentices have improved, no matter the place they started. This could assist apprentices recognise their progress and clarify how their information, expertise and behaviours have improved.

Suppliers might want to examine how they report progress. If the instruments and software program they use solely deal with {qualifications}, they might want to search out different strategies to measure proof of the usual particular information, expertise and behaviours.

For example, within the Youngsters, Younger Folks and Households Practitioner commonplace, apprentices have to point out braveness. How do we all know that an apprentice is aware of about battle decision, or has subtle tough conditions? Do they learn about specific reporting procedures? A qualification will not present this. The supplier might want to be sure that they know the apprentice has developed these behaviours and be capable to present proof of this to an inspector if requested.

In apprenticeship requirements, what apprentices know, what they’ll do and what they present, is extra necessary than any measure of progress by way of a qualification. Three-quarters of a qualification, two-thirds of a talent, or half a behaviour are meaningless measures of progress. As they are saying, the satan is within the element.

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