COVID-19: Changing your training and assessment strategies and practices

As the coronavirus pandemic is continuing to make its impact on our way of life, training providers are increasingly looking at ways they can continue to provide training and assessment services to their learners, but still being mindful that they must maintain the minimum standards.

As we’re all dealing with the disruption to our regular way of life, people are increasingly working from home and self-isolating. As such, training and learning is taking place away from traditional campuses and workplaces and now being delivered into people’s homes.

Registered Training Organisations, Higher Education Providers and schools now need to adapt their training and assessment strategies to continue providing learning opportunities for their students.

As businesses pivot their existing strategies and practices to adapt to these changes it is vitally important to continue to maintain the minimum standards with respect to the competency standards and curriculum. We must ensure that the adjustments made to the way we teach and assess does not compromise the integrity of the units of competency or curriculum.

In order to make these immediate changes, education providers need to ensure they are quick to apply these changes and maintain the minimum standards.

Audit Express provides the following tips for pivoting your business to adapt to the current crisis:

  1. Plan, not only for the worst-case but also for the unthinkable.
  2. What existing systems do you have that can be used for the current situation.
  3. Use the free tools available on the market. 
  4. Don’t waste money on things you don’t need.
  5. Innovate for what you don’t have
  6. Maintain compliance – rapid changes shouldn’t mean you lower your standards.
  7. Be agile – use your time wisely
  8. Make fast and decisive decisions – but always be considered.
  9. Learn and teach how to work from home effectively
  10. Be safe and sanitise

As we make our agile, fast and decisive changes, we also need to ensure we keep records of what we do and why we did it. At this time, you should ensure you keep good records of what you’ve done to adjust your training and assessment strategies and practices and how you’ve ensured you support your learners during this time.

To make fast and decisive decisions, re-writing your training and assessment strategies seems like an unnecessary burden to quickly pivot your business to support your learners. Likewise, you’ll need to ensure you effectively communicate these changes to our trainers, assessors and education managers.

Audit Express has designed an example form and repository for you to use and amend and implement in your organisation to maintain records of the changes you’ve made to your training and assessment strategies and practices.

The vocational education and training regulators have also indicated that they are willing to work with registered training organisations to get through this difficult time. I encourage you to visit your respective regulator’s website for more information on how they can assist and to communicate your changes with them:



WA TAC:—COVID-19-impact-on-the-VET-sector-and-RTOs.aspx

This is an example of an online form you could use and adapt in your organisation to record the changes to your delivery and assessment strategies and practices. We highly recommend you amend and contextualise this document to meet the requirements of your organisation.

If you would like to get a copy of this online form, please email:

We are all in this together, and only together can we get through this incredibly difficult time. If you need any assistance, the team at Audit Express are available.

Take care.

Volume of Learning….. Do we have to follow the AQF or can we deliver our courses in shorter timeframes?

One question that we are frequently asked is:

“Can our RTO deliver a qualification in a shorter time frame than what is listed in the AQF Volume of Learning?”

ASQA has clearly answered this question in their latest FAQs update:

“Each learner must gain and be assessed against all the knowledge and skills described in the training package or accredited course. Depending on the circumstances and the characteristics of your learners, it may be possible to achieve this in a shorter period than that described in the AQF….. [emaillocker id=6291]

Your RTO may structure a course to be completed in a shorter time period than that described in the AQF. In this case, you will need to clearly describe, using a rationale based on the previous skills and knowledge and the needs of learners, how a specific learner cohort:
• has the characteristics to achieve the required rigour and depth of training, and
• can meet all of the competency requirements in a shorter time frame.

Your description must take into account the need to allow learners to reflect on and absorb the knowledge, to practice the skills in different contexts and to learn to apply the skills and knowledge in the varied environments that the ‘real world’ offers before being assessed”.

The AQF Volume of Learning Explanation states that:

“Provider decisions about the duration of the delivery of a qualification must take into account the students’ likelihood of successfully achieving the learning outcomes and ensure that the integrity of the qualification outcomes is maintained. If the duration of delivery is substantially different from the volume of learning specified by the qualification type specification, providers should be able to provide pedagogical rationale to support the variation.”

What does this mean for your RTO?

Well firstly, as an organisation if you have determined the need or demand to deliver your training programs over a duration that is shorter than the AQF Volume of Learning, be sure to undertake some industry consultation that demonstrates support for the proposed duration of the training program. You should also make sure that your training and assessment strategy clearly explains how and why you have determined the need to deliver the training program in this way. In addition you should also document how your learners have the capacity and capability to achieve the requirements of the training program; and exactly how the learners will meet all of the competency requirements in a shorter time frame.

You really need to outline this in a way that makes the regulator confident that the training package requirements and the level of quality outlined in the Standards for RTOs will not be compromised by the shortened duration of your training program.

The team at AuditExpress often come across brilliant training programs that are delivered in durations that are shorter than those outlined in the AQF Volume of Learning. The key to both success and compliance is making sure that you have undertaken quality industry consultation for all of your training programs and that you maintain detailed and accurate training and assessment strategies.

For more information on Volume of Learning, check out ASQA’s User Guide for the New Standards for RTOs and the AQF Volume of Learning Explained.


Do your trainer files comply with the New Standards for RTOs 2015?

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]We have updated our original post from 2015 about trainer file compliance with a new factsheet & template.

Click below to access our free trainer profile compliance video, factsheet and template…


Compliance with the New Standards for RTOs

Compliance with the New Standards for RTOs

The time to check your organisation’s compliance with the New Standards for RTOs 2015 is now.

audit express

The New Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015 have arrived. Have you given any thought to how your organisation will demonstrate compliance with the New Standards for RTOs? [emaillocker id=6291]

If your RTO is registered with ASQA or the TAC by now your RTO should have started to implement the new standards. For information about the ASQA’s arrangements for implementing the New Standards – CLICK HERE

If your RTO is still registered with the VRQA you should continue to ensure that your RTO remains compliant with the AQTF Standards for RTOs and the VRQA Guidelines, however it is expected that at some point in 2015 the VRQA may adopt the new Standards as we saw with TAC in Western Australia last year.

Either way the time to act is now! Is your RTO compliant with the New Standards for RTOs 2015?

Audit Express have played a significant role in the consultation process with both the Minister and the Department of Industry. Also in the stages of developing and reviewing the New Standards for RTOs 2015.

We have developed a unique set of tools and techniques to audit your RTOs compliance with the New Standards for RTOs 2015.

Call Audit Express today on 1300 73 55 41 to discuss your organisation’s compliance with the New Standards for RTOs 2015. [/emaillocker]