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What fees apply to accredit a course?

The application fee for accreditation of a vocational education and training course with ASQA is $8070 per course.

Where can I identify co-requisite unit relationships?

Some courses identify units that can be completed in conjunction with other units. Where co-requisite unit relationships exist they must be identified in the ‘Assessment conditions’ field of an enterprise unit developed for inclusion in a course.

Are equivalent training products automatically added to CRICOS providers’ scopes?

Where a superseded training product is replaced on an RTO’s scope of registration with an equivalent product, and the same superseded training product is on the provider’s CRICOS registration the equivalent training product is automatically added. The superseded training products end dates are changed to reflect the end of the transition period.

How long must CRICOS student assessment items be kept for?

The Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act 2000 requires Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) and English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) providers to keep student assessment records for a minimum of two years.

In addition, an registered training organisation (RTO) is required to securely retain, and be able to produce in full at audit if requested to do so, all completed student assessment items for each student for a period of six months from the date on which the judgement of competence for the student has been made.

Completed student assessment items include the actual piece(s) of work completed by a student or evidence of that work, including evidence collected for a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) process. An assessor’s completed marking guide, criteria, and observation checklist for each student may be sufficient where it is not possible to retain the student’s actual work. However, the retained evidence must have enough detail to demonstrate the assessor’s judgement of the student’s performance against the standard required.

Qualifications, courses or units of competency that lead to regulated/licensed outcomes may also impose specific records retention requirements. RTOs should refer to specific regulatory requirements relating to that delivery.

Is a CRICOS provider required to provide health cover for its students?

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection requires all overseas students to have health insurance while in Australia.

It is not compulsory for the registered training organisation (RTO) to provide students with Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC); however, all providers should ensure that their students have this cover.

Further information is available from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

Is there a requirement for specific holiday periods for CRICOS courses?

Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) providers may choose when their holiday periods are.

Can I sell my RTO?

Yes—if a business, including its legal entity, is being sold, ASQA needs to be notified of the sale via a Notification of material change or event using asqanet.

However, registered training organisation (RTO) registration is not transferable. The new owners of the business will have to apply to ASQA for initial registration as an RTO.

How can I add an Australian delivery location to my scope of registration?

You must submit an Notification of change of provider details using asqanet to add an Australian delivery location to your scope of registration.

How do I notify ASQA if my RTO business is entering liquidation?

You can notify ASQA of your business is entering liquidation by submitting a Notification of material change or event using asqanet.

How do I notify ASQA of a change of CEO?

You can notify ASQA of a change of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) by submitting a Notification of material change or event using asqanet.

How do I update my RTO contact details on training.gov.au?

You can change update your registered training organisation (RTO) contact details by submitting a Notification of change of provider details using asqanet.

If I want to issue units relating to licensing outcomes, do I need to inform ASQA?

You will need to apply to ASQA if you wish to issue a unit leading to a licensed outcome as a 'standalone' unit.

You will also need to apply to ASQA to list these units on your scope using the Application to change RTO scope of registration on the asqanet website.

What RTO changes need to be reported to ASQA?

It is a condition of registration that all registered training organisations notify the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) of any changes to contact details and changes or events that affect the operation of the registered training organisation (RTO).

RTOs must notify ASQA of these changes as soon as possible after they happen (preferably within 20 working days).

Can I advertise a qualification or unit of competency if I have applied to ASQA to add it to my scope of registration (if ASQA has not yet approved the application)?

No—it is an offense under the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011 to advertise a qualification or unit of competency that is not on your scope of registration.

Can I put the Nationally Recognised Training (NRT) logo on marketing material?

If you want to use the NRT logo, your promotional material must clearly distinguish what is nationally recognised training within the scope of your registration and what is not nationally recognised.

Do I have to include my CRICOS code on marketing material for a CRICOS course?

Yes—all written material (including websites) promoting a course, or inviting a student to apply for a course, must list the registered provider’s Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) number.

Do I have to specify whether a course is accredited or non-accredited in my marketing material?

All promotional material should clearly define which courses are accredited and which are not accredited.

It is an offence to imply that non-accredited training is accredited training.

Can I submit a change of scope application when my application to renew RTO registration is still pending?

Yes―as your registration continues during this period, there are no additional restrictions on your trading.

How do I appeal an ASQA decision about my application?

If you are dissatisfied with a decision made by ASQA you have a number of options:

  1. Consider the reasons for the decision, address the outstanding areas of non-compliance and submit a new application
  2. Ask ASQA to reassess its position 
  3. Ask ASQA to review the decision 
  4. Apply to have the decision reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). Refer to the ASQA fact sheet―AAT review of an ASQA decision.

How long will it take for my application to be processed?

ASQA completes the majority of Applications to renew RTO registration within six months.

If my renewal application is being considered by ASQA, can I enrol students in classes due to commence after my expiry date?

Yes―as your registration continues during this period, there are no additional restrictions on enrolling students.

Is there a deadline for submitting an application to renew RTO registration? What happens if I don’t meet the deadline?

If you intend to renew your registered training organisation (RTO) registration, you must submit a completed application to renew registration at least 90 days prior to the expiry date of your registration. Your registration expiry date is listed on the national register, training.gov.au.

If you fail to submit a complete application at least 90 days prior to your expiry date, your registration may not be renewed.

ASQA will not consider your application complete until all fees have been paid in full and the payment has cleared.

When will my RTO registration expiry date be updated on training.gov.au after my application has been approved?

If your application is approved following a risk assessment (e.g. without an audit), ASQA will update the information in asqanet within 1-2 working days.

If your application progresses to audit, once the audit is complete, your auditor prepares a report.

Once the report is completed, ASQA commissioners or their delegates will then make a decision about your application based on the report’s recommendations. In some cases, this decision will be made by all of ASQA’s commissioners.

Once your application is finalised, you will be notified in writing and provided with a copy of the audit report. If your application is approved following an audit, the relevant information in training.gov.au will usually be updated within 10 working days of the date your application is finalised.

When your expiry date is updated on training.gov.au, if your current expiry date is in the future, the new expiry date will not appear in the ‘current’ section of training.gov.au. You will need to select ‘View History’ to view all registration periods, past, current and future.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the Standards for RTOs 2015

Are electronic signatures instead of original signatures acceptable on testamurs and statements of attainment?

Electronic signatures are acceptable if you can demonstrate that there are effective systems in place to prevent fraudulent use of the signature.

Can I put the ASQA logo on testamurs or statements of attainment?

No—the Commonwealth Coat of Arms is used by Australian Government departments and agencies, statutory and non-statutory authorities, the Parliament and Commonwealth courts and tribunals.

The only logo required on testamurs and statements of attainment is the Nationally Recognised Training (NRT) logo. The NRT logo is not to be used on the record of results.

You can request the NRT logo by emailing ASQA at enquiries [at] asqa.gov.au

Will RTOs that are currently registered for five years have their registration extended to seven years?

If ASQA approves your application for renewal of RTO registration, you will be granted a registration period of up to seven years. In some cases, ASQA grants a shorter registration period. If you are granted a shorter registration period, ASQA will explain to you the reasons for this.v

Are providers required to print all testamur and statements of attainment?

There is no specific requirement in the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) regarding printing testamurs and statements of attainment. Providers should retain a soft copy.

ASQA auditors will often require that you provide a sample of testamurs and statements of attainment.

The National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011 requires that you retain student records for a period of 30 years.

Can a non-RTO in a partnering arrangement with an RTO issue a testamur or statement of attainment?

No—the student must enrol with one registered training organisation (RTO). The RTO that the student is enrolled with must issue the statement of attainment or testamur. The RTO issuing the statement of attainment or testamur must have all the relevant items on their scope of registration.

Can a trainer or assessor sign a testamur or statement of attainment?

The AQF Qualifications Issuance Policy requires that testamurs and statements of attainment include the authorised signatory. In most cases, that is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). The CEO is able to delegate that authority; however, there needs to be a formal delegation of that authority.