ASQA has recently considered feedback from providers in relation to the General direction—transition and teach-out, which came into effect on 1 January 2014. Providers have contacted ASQA with concerns about the lack of flexibility in the teach-out provisions and the potential effects of this on students.
What will change?
ASQA has made a decision to reintroduce flexibility to the teach-out arrangements.
In addition, and in accordance with the principle that students should graduate with contemporary industry skills (as reflected in the most up-to-date qualification), providers will shortly be required to notify ASQA in every case where a student cannot complete their training or assessment within the prescribed period.
ASQA will use the information garnered through these notifications to:
- develop a more comprehensive understanding of the reasons training or assessment cannot always be completed in accordance with the timeframes required, and
- address any factors which may be impeding the timely completion of a student’s training.
When will this happen?
ASQA is currently revising the general direction to reintroduce flexibility in teach-out arrangements and to explain the notification process (including the date the notification requirement commences).
The revised general direction will be published on ASQA’s website and notification included in an ASQA Update email.
What happens in the meantime?
To respond to the immediate issue of students who cannot be completed in accordance with the existing general direction, ASQA approves that training organisations are permitted to operate under the arrangements detailed in the previous general direction:
- in exceptional circumstances, and
- where there would be genuine disadvantage to the student.
Specifically, training organisations which are unable to comply with the teach-out periods detailed in the general direction for a cohort of students should be prepared to demonstrate, if requested, why exceptional circumstances apply that would cause disadvantage to continuing students if made to transfer to a new training product within the required timeframes (i.e. keep records of decisions and reasons).
Please note that the notification process will not commence until the date specified in the revised general direction.