ASQA | Spotlight On trainers and assessors, Chapter 2
Vocational competence and currency
Chapter 2 aims to help RTOs determine the workplace competencies of trainers and assessors.
It is important that RTOs know they are responsible for confirming that trainers and assessors have the required workplace skills and experience to confidently and competently train students, as required in the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015 (the Standards).
Workplace competency requirements
Understanding vocational competencies
The Standards require that a trainer and assessor is capable and experienced in the requirements of each training product being delivered by that person, at least to the level described in that specific product.
Your RTO should be sure that your trainers and assessors are vocationally competent in all units of competencies they are delivering. Many training packages are structured to enable an RTO to flexibly design a qualification and select from a range of units. Where your trainers and assessors are not vocationally competent in a particular unit, this may mean that unit cannot be advertised or offered to prospective students, because your RTO is not resourced in that area.
Many trainers and assessors will hold the units of competency that they are delivering. But vocational competency can also be demonstrated through equivalence of competency. Demonstrating equivalence of competency means that the trainer and assessor has the broad knowledge, skill and experience requirements similar to actually holding the unit of competency.
A consistent approach to equivalence
Your RTO should apply a consistent approach to assess whether a prospective trainer and assessor has an equivalent unit of competency. Your approach should:
Understanding current industry skills
When recruiting trainers and assessors, it is crucial that candidates are able to demonstrate current understanding and skills relevant to the vocational industry in which they are looking to deliver. Their currency means your students can be taught in a way that reflects relevant industry practice, allowing them to progress more easily into the workforce.
Managing your RTO’s staff skillset
While the method and frequency of maintaining current industry skills will vary for each trainer and assessor, the method your RTO applies to manage this process for trainers and assessors should remain consistent. Steps for efficient RTO skillset management include:
Other requirements to consider
Some units of competency require assessors to hold additional, specific vocational and/or industry skills and experience.
These extra requirements will be found in the Assessment Conditions of the unit of competency.
An example of Assessment Conditions which have these extra requirements can be found in the unit of competency SHBHCUT002 - Create one length or solid haircut structures. This unit requires any assessor delivering the unit to hold the following competencies and experience:
Assessors need to satisfy the Standards for Registered Training Organisation’s requirements for assessors; and:
- hold a Certificate III in Hairdressing, or a Certificate III in Barbering, or a Certificate IV in Hairdressing, or be able to demonstrate equivalence of competencies; and
- have at least three years full time employment experience as a hairdresser in a salon environment where they have applied the skills and knowledge covered in this unit of competency to assess this unit as part of a hairdressing qualification; this cannot include any indentured traineeship or apprenticeship period; or
- have at least three years full time employment experience as a barber in a shop or salon environment where they have applied the skills and knowledge covered in this unit of competency to assess this unit as part of a barbering qualification ; this cannot include any indentured traineeship or apprenticeship period.
Useful tips to help determine competencies
More Spotlight On
View the webinar recording on trainers and assessors
ASQA held a webinar on 4 April 2021 to wrap up our first Spotlight On series about trainers and assessors.
The presenters include ASQA Stakeholder Liaison Group members, TAFE Queensland and ASQA Director, Education and Guidance, Emma Marks.