Fact sheet—Meeting trainer and assessor requirements

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This fact sheet aims to help registered training organisations (RTOs) understand the requirements of the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015, specifically Clauses 1.13 – 1.16.

Trainers and assessors who deliver any Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) qualification or skill set from the Training and Education Training Package (or its successor) are also required to meet additional requirements, outlined in Clauses 1.21 – 1.24.

As part of the Standards, an RTO’s training and assessment may only be delivered by trainers and assessors who have:

  • the vocational competencies at least to the level being delivered and assessed
  • current industry skills directly relevant to the training and assessment being provided, and
  • current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning that informs their training and assessment.

In addition, training and assessment may only be delivered by persons who have:

  • TAE40110 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, or its successor*, or
  • a diploma or higher level qualification in adult education.

* Prior to 1 January 2016, a person may demonstrate equivalence of competencies in the training and assessment qualification. From 1 January 2016, demonstrating equivalence of competencies will not be sufficient—trainers and assessors must hold the TAE40110 or its successor.

Your RTO must also ensure that all trainers and assessors undertake professional development in the fields of:

  • knowledge and practice of vocational training, and
  • learning and assessment, including competency-based training and assessment.

1. Meeting vocational competency requirements

A trainer’s vocational competency means that they have the particular skills and knowledge relevant to the industry area in which they are delivering. The training product identifies the competencies that the relevant industry requires.

When considering the vocational competencies required to deliver a training product, consider the requirements listed in the training product, both at the qualification and unit of competency/module level.

Your RTO must ensure it has trainers and assessors who are vocationally competent to deliver all units you intend on offering.

Example

Heavy Vehicles Training has developed a training and assessment strategy to deliver AUR31114 Certificate III in Heavy Commercial Vehicle Mechanical Technology.

The strategy comprises 36 units of competency. To make up the strategy, Heavy Vehicles Training can also:

  • select elective units of its own choice from a named list of 38 units, and
  • six elective units from any training package, provided the units were at an appropriate level of competency and relevant to the vocation.

Depending on the units selected for delivery, the vocational competencies a trainer and assessor requires could be considerable.

Heavy Vehicles Training’s training and assessment strategy for AUR31114 Certificate III in Heavy Commercial Vehicle Mechanical Technology has been developed to include the unit AURVTW2001 Carry out manual metal arc welding procedures. The trainer and assessor for this unit must have the skills and knowledge to be able to carry out manual metal arc welding procedures.

1.1 How trainers and assessors demonstrate vocational competencies

Trainers and assessors can demonstrate they have vocational competencies at least to the level being delivered and assessed either by:

  • holding the competency they are delivering, or
  • demonstrating equivalence of competency.

How trainers and assessors demonstrate equivalence of competency is subject to the discretion of your RTO, however, your RTO must be able to provide evidence showing how it determined its trainer and assessors’ vocational skills and knowledge are equivalent to the requirements of the training product being delivered.

Evidence of equivalence could be captured by mapping the requirements of the training product and comparing these to the trainer and assessor’s actual industry skills and knowledge. If conducting a mapping exercise, your RTO should document all skills and knowledge requirements of each unit of competency / module being delivered by the trainer and assessor. Your RTO would then collect evidence of a trainer and assessor’s vocational competencies, verify the evidence provided, and record a documented analysis between the evidence and the competency requirements.

2. Meeting current industry skills requirements

To provide training that reflects current industry practice and valid assessment, your RTO’s trainers and assessors must have current skills in their industry area.

The current industry skills held by trainers and assessors:

  • need to be consistent with the requirements of the training packages/accredited courses they are delivering, and
  • need to be consistent with the required skills for trainers and assessors that your RTO has identified through industry engagement.

The implementation guide that accompanies a training package may also include advice on the maintenance of current industry-specific skills.

Currency in skills will depend on the industry area. Some industries operate in an environment where continual changes to technology or societal needs could mean that resources and processes are quickly out of date. It is only through keeping up to date with the requirements of industry, and by regularly engaging with industry, that an RTO operating in such industries will understand which industry skills a trainer and assessor needs.

2.1 How trainers and assessors demonstrate current industry skills

Your trainers/assessors need to show how they have maintained, upgraded or developed new skills relevant to the current industry needs. Evidence relating to trainers and assessors’ industry skills can take many forms.

Your RTO should ideally ensure that trainers and assessors are regularly exposed to industry workplaces and that they have the ability to participate in workplace tasks. The purpose of a trainer/assessor visit to a workplace will determine whether the visit counts towards evidence of current industry skills. Delivering training and assessment in a workplace does not constitute the development of current industry skills. However, attending a workplace to experience the latest techniques, processes and resources could contribute to the demonstration of current industry skills.

Other activities which a trainer and assessor could participate in to contribute to the demonstration of current industry skills include:

  • Participation in relevant professional development activities: the implementation guide may provide a list of relevant industry associations. A trainer and assessor could consult with these industry associations to identify relevant development activities they could attend.
  • Participation in networks: this could include attendance at industry breakfasts, workplace health and safety meetings and discussions with employers.
  • Personal development: through reading of industry journals, with subscriptions both online and in print.
  • Undertaking accredited training: including single units of competency, skill sets and qualifications and demonstrating recent completion of a VET training product.
  • Returning to work: that is, working in the relevant industry on a part-time or casual basis.

Your RTO must ensure that the outcome of any industry engagement confirms the relevance of your trainers and assessors’ current industry skills. Consultation with industry will help identify the most appropriate activities to undertake and the frequency of participation in these activities required.

3. Meeting vocational training, learning and assessment requirements

Your RTO must ensure that:

  • training and assessment is only delivered by trainers and assessors who have current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning, and
  • it has ensured all trainers and assessors undertake professional development in the fields of the knowledge and practice of vocational training, learning and assessment, including competency-based training and assessment.

Your RTO must also ensure trainers and assessors have particular training and assessment qualifications or, until 1 January 2016, can demonstrate equivalence of competency.

3.1 Training and assessment qualifications

Until 1 January 2016, trainers and assessors must:

  • hold the TAE40110 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, or its successor
  • be able to demonstrate equivalence of competencies, or
  • hold a diploma or higher level qualification in adult education.

From 1 January 2016, trainers and assessors must:

  • hold the TAE40110 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, or its successor, or
  • hold a diploma or higher level qualification in adult education.

4. Meeting ‘current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning’ requirements

Training and assessment can only be delivered by trainers and assessors who have current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning. This is to ensure that training and assessment is relevant to a learner’s needs.

Having current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning means that a trainer and assessor has contemporary knowledge of the vocational education and training (VET) environment and is able to apply this knowledge to the training and assessment they deliver.

4.1 How trainers and assessors demonstrate current vocational training and learning knowledge and skills

Currency in vocational training and learning also encompasses having current skills and knowledge to deliver in the adult vocational education environment. A trainer and assessor who has recently completed any qualification or skill set from the Training and Education Training Package would be able to demonstrate current vocational training and learning knowledge and skills.

Your RTO should ensure your trainers and assessors understand the requirements of the VET environment and that they continue to develop this knowledge after obtaining their training and assessment competencies.

Your RTO must develop and implement a plan for professional development for each of your trainers and assessors. Ensuring that all trainers and assessors undertake professional development will help contribute to the demonstration of vocational training and learning requirements.

5. Undertaking professional development in vocational training, learning and assessment

You RTO must ensure that all trainers and assessors undertake professional development in the knowledge and practice of vocational training, learning and assessment and specifically in competency-based training and assessment.

Definition—competency-based training and assessment

Competency based training and assessment means that a person is trained and assessed to meet the performance and knowledge requirements to safely and effectively complete workplace activities in a range of different situations and environments, to an industry standard that is expected in the workplace.

Competency based training and assessment does not compare the training outcomes between learners. Learners are assessed against the requirements of a training product.

Undertaking professional development means a trainer and assessor has participated in activities to maintain, upgrade and/or develop the way in which they train and assess. The professional development activities must be relevant to the provision of training and assessment in a competency-based environment.

5.1 Demonstrating I have undertaken professional development in vocational training, learning and assessment

Simply delivering training and assessment does not constitute professional development. Professional development activities are planned activities with the primary purpose of developing a trainer and assessor’s own knowledge and skills.

Your RTO must ensure your trainers and assessors undertake professional development. Your RTO must demonstrate that you have developed and implemented a plan for professional development for all trainers and assessors (including new employees, long-term staff, subcontractors and third-party providers).

Examples of professional development activities include:

  • Participating in courses, workshops, seminars, and conferences: trainers and assessors can attend both external and internal courses—that is, courses developed by professional development providers and internal programs developed and delivered by your RTO.
  • Demonstrating recent completion of a VET training product.
  • Participation in learning networks—there are various professional associations which provide educative forums about vocational training and assessment.
  • Personal development through reading of publications and other relevant information.
  • Participation in validation or moderation activities.
  • Shadowing or working closely with other trainers’ and assessors’.

You must record evidence of professional development, including positive results of professional development activities.

In summary

In demonstrating requirements, an RTO must be assured that the amount of evidence collated to show competency, currency and professional development of a trainer or assessor is sufficient.

In all cases, RTOs are expected to take appropriate steps to verify information presented by the trainer and assessor. This may include:

  • contacting the provider named on the person’s evidence (including qualifications) to confirm that the document is genuine
  • conducting referee checks at the time of employment to confirm relevant industry experience.

The evidence collected then needs to be kept so that you can demonstrate how you have appropriately verified this information.

For more information

  • Refer to the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015 Users’ Guide.


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