This chapter focuses on the student’s enrolment experience with their registered training organisation (RTO), the second phase of the student’s journey.
Under the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015 (the Standards) relevant to the enrolment phase of the student journey, RTOs are responsible for:
- informing and protecting students (clauses 5.1 to 5.3)
- protecting pre-paid fees by students (clause 7.3)
- providing credit for prior studies (clause 3.5).
Students have told ASQA that it is important that they:
- receive accurate advice about a course to ensure it meets their needs before they enrol
- can understand details about the course—such as how long the course will take, the study requirements and assessment methods
- understand their own rights and responsibilities as well as their RTO’s
- are aware of costs, payment terms and conditions (including refund policies).
ASQA continues to focus on learner protection because the results of successive ASQA strategic reviews have shown that many students are not receiving adequate or accurate information before enrolment. This means that students are often not fully informed before making decisions about their training. This lack of information can have a significant impact on students—increasing the potential for them to drop out of the course and/or suffer financial loss. For RTOs, this can lead to a loss of reputation and higher numbers of complaints.
ASQA receives a significant number of complaints about fees and refunds, as well as complaints about student information and enrolment. Students need to know that their exposure to financial loss is limited in the case of a provider closing or not being able to provide the training.