​​The following Frequently Ask Questions have been developed to assist RTOs maintain compliance with the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015.
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If you have any further queries please contact the Training Accreditation Council Secretariat via tac@dtwd.wa.gov.au  or phone (08) 9224 6510.​

Standard One

​​​Standard 1 - The RTO's training and assessment strategies and practices are responsive to industry​​ and learner needs and meet the requirements of training packages and VET accredited courses

Q: What does an RTO need to consider when determining the amount of training required? (Clause 1.2)

A: An RTO's training and assessment strategies and practices, including the amount of training they provide, must be consistent with the requirements of training packages and VET accredited courses and enable each learner to meet the requirements for each unit of competency or module in which they are enrolled.

In determining the amount of training required for each student the following factors should be considered:

a. the existing skills, knowledge and the experience of the learner

b. the mode of delivery; and

c. where a full qualification is not being delivered, the number of units and/or modules being delivered as a proportion of the full qualification.

A shorter course may be acceptable if, for example the learner cohort comprises experienced workers who already have most of the required skills and knowledge. Assessment requirements must still be met in such programs, although some assessment may be undertaken by recognising existing skills and knowledge.​

More information is available in the TAC Fact Sheet: Amount of Training (opens in new window)

Q: What are some strategies for engaging with industry? (Clauses 1.5-1.6)

A: RTOs must engage with relevant industry stakeholders to establish appropriate contexts, methods, resources and trainers and assessors to deliver training and to conduct assessment.

Strategies for industry engagement can include partnering with local employers, regional/national businesses, relevant industry bodies, relevant committees or other RTOs.

There is no specific method or approach you must use to engage with industry.

More information is available in the TAC Fact Sheet: Industry Engagement (opens in new window)

Q: What are the Trainer and Assessor Requirements? (Clauses 1.13-1.16)

A: For all training products (except qualifications or skill sets from the Training and Education Training Package), the Standards for RTOs state that trainers and assessors must:

  • have the vocational competencies at least to the level being delivered and assessed;
  • have current relevant industry skills;
  • have current knowledge and skills in VET; and
  • be involved in ongoing professional development in VET.​

In addition, for RTOs providing training and assessment the trainer and assessor requires one or more of:

  • Certificate IV in Training and Assessment;
  • Diploma or higher qualification in adult education; or
  • Prior to 1 January 2016, equivalent competencies to one of the above. ​

More information is available in the TAC Fact Sheet: Trainer and Assessor Regulatory Requirements (opens in new window)

Standard Two

Stand​​ard 2 - The operations of the RTO are quality assured

Q: How can RTOs demonstrate continuous improvement? (Clause 2.2)

A: RTOs can conduct a regular, systematic review of training and assessment strategies and practice to determine whether any changes are required. A range of information can be collected to inform continuous improvement, including:

  • quality indicator data (collected under Clause 7.5);
  • validation outcomes;
  • client feedback;
  • trainer and assessor feedback; and
  • complaints and appeals. 

Standard Three

​Standard 3 - The RTO issues, maintains and accepts AQF certification documentation in ​​accordance with these Standards and provides access to learner records

Q: What is the difference between Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and providing credit for prior studies? (Clause 3.5)

A: RPL is a form of assessment that assesses the competency of an individual that may have been achieved through formal or non-formal learning. This is used to determine the extent to which the person meets the requirements specified in the training package or accredited course.

RPL should not be confused with providing credit for prior studies, which is not a form of assessment – it is recognising the equivalence of studies previously undertaken and completed successfully. Where a student presents evidence that they have completed one or more units or modules through another RTO or AQF authorised issuing organisation (e.g. AQF certification documentation or an authenticated VET transcript), the RTO must accept and provide credit for the unit(s) or module(s) completed. Learners must not be required to repeat any unit or module in which they have already been assessed as competent. The only exception is when doing so is a license condition or a regulatory requirement.

More information is available in the TAC Fact Sheet: Recognition of Prior Learning (opens in new window)

Q: A student has completed all the requirements for a qualification and paid all fees but fails to, or refuses to, provide a USI within 30 days of completion. Should the RTO issue the qualification? (Clause 3.6)

A: No. From 1 January 2015, your RTO may only issue a qualification or statement of attainment to a student after that student has provided you with a verified USI, or after your RTO has applied for a USI on the student's behalf.

To avoid delays in issuing certification documentation, it is recommended you apply for, or verify the learner's USI at the time of enrolment. 

A student can apply to be granted an exemption from the USI Office. You can issue a qualification or statement of attainment to a student that holds an exemption, but you will first need to sight and verify the exemption with the USI Office. For further information on applications for individual exemptions from the USI, please refer to the USI Website.

Standard Eight

​Standard 8 - The RTO c​​ooperates with the VET Regulator and is legally compliant at all times

Q: How do RTOs make an annual declaration? (Clause 8.4)

A: The annual declaration covers the RTO's entire scope of operations, including all services provided on its behalf by other organisations under third party arrangements, and for all locations where the RTO operates in Western Australia, Victoria or overseas. View the Annual Declaration page for more information. 

Q: Is Quality Indicator Reporting (Competency Completion, Learner and Employer Survey data) still a requirement? (Clause 8.1)

A: If you have submitted Total VET Activity (TVA) reports for all nationally recognised training activity, you are not required to submit Competency Completion Online System (CCOS) data. RTOs accessing an exemption to TVA must instead report CCOS. There has been no change to the Learner and Employer Survey reporting, and this remains a requirement under the Standards for RTOs 2015.

Accredited Courses

Q: Is an accredited course an 'AQF qualification' or an 'accredited short course' under the Standards for RTOs?

A: It can be either, depending on the AQF level of the course. An accredited short course is defined as an accredited course that leads only to a statement of attainment (e.g. a 'Course in'). An accredited course at Certificate I level or higher is considered an AQF qualification.

​Q: How do the requirements for 'Transition of training products' apply to accredited courses? (Clause 1.26)

A: All of Clause 1.26 applies to accredited courses. If an accredited course is re-accredited, it supersedes or replaces its predecessor and 1.26a applies. If the course is not re-accredited, either 1.26b or 1.26c applies depending on whether the course is an AQF qualification (Certificate I or higher) or an accredited short course ('Course in'). In any case, 1.26d applies to an accredited course that has expired.

​Q: What AQF certification documentation does an RTO need to issue for full or partial completion of an accredited short course ('Course in')?

A: An RTO must issue a statement of attainment for full or partial completion of an accredited short course. The wording to be included will depend on whether the competencies were attained in completion of the course (full completion) or as part of the course (partial completion). For further information on the specific elements to be included, please see Section 6 of Schedule 5 of the Standards for RTOs.​

More information is available in the TAC Fact Sheet: Issuing Testamurs and Statements of Attainment(opens in new window)