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Review of TAE Training Package

Review of TAE Training Package

The AISC has now approved a complete review of the TAE Training Package. The details and time-frame for the review can be found on PwC’s website at this link: https://www.skillsforaustralia.com/project-page/education-tae/.

This time, I am hopeful that we will have qualifications and skill sets that are actually fit-for-purpose. If you have read my research report dated November 2019, I argued that TAE40116 was not fit-for-purpose.

My colleagues Nancy Pavlovic (Pavlov Group), Chemène Sinson (Blackwater Projects), Douwlene Burdett (Healthy Business Academy) and Carolyn Fletcher (ITTA) have had a number of meetings and put together our main recommendations, which we have presented to Andrew Shea, Chair of the Education IRC and to PwC’s Skills for Australia.

At the moment, the Education IRC is concentrating on the new e-learning skill set which will comprise 2 new units, one for e-learning and one for e-assessment. This is in response to an AISC request to consider how the Covid pandemic has changed the way we work. My colleagues and I are not sure that’s the best way to go, but it looks like the decision is made. We are expecting these 2 new units to be endorsed around February and, needless to say, once they are endorsed, I will be developing resources for them. At the moment I’m considering the same clustered approach that I used for TAELLN412 / TAELLN413.

Our main concern is the Cert IV qualification as a whole. It seems that there’s consensus everywhere to remove TAEASS502 from the core so that’s one battle we don’t have to fight. I was able to attend a PwC focus group meeting recently and was the only representative of a private RTO. All the other RTO representatives were from various TAFEs. Overall, I was surprised at the amount of consensus in the meeting.

I would urge everyone who has a vested interest in this training package to make submissions to PwC or directly to the IRC members if you can. There is a survey you can access on PwC’s website.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
0407 131 075

Quality of VET Training

We have seen many changes in the past few years, but very little actual improvement. It was hoped with ASQA taking a national role in policing quality of training that they would target and de-register those RTOs who are only interested in making money. I have just attended the ASQA briefing and it was interesting that, in spite of talking for nearly 2 hours, David Garner didn’t address the “elephant in the room”.

The quality of VET training depends upon two things: the expertise and quality of the trainers and ASQA’s role in ensuring poor quality RTOs are targeted and either de-registered or rectify their practices.

It was said (but not by me) that TAE40110 was to blame for poor training and assessment practices. When it was replaced with TAE40116, all RTOs were required to undertake a complex and time-consuming application for scope. ASQA couldn’t cope with this and, as a result, many months went by before any RTOs were awarded scope.

Despite this, there are now RTOs with scope for TAE40116 who are well-known to be focused on making money rather than providing quality training. We know who they are but for some reason it appears ASQA doesn’t. How could they have been approved for scope? Most RTOs want to do the right thing, but they can’t compete with RTOs who are advertising TAE40116 for less than $1,000. There is no way the qualification can be delivered at this price.

I decided to take on some training for TAE Cert IV and Diploma and at the moment have over 100 students enrolled with International Teacher Training Academy. My reason was to discover how my resources (and the evidence requirements of the qualification) worked in practice. Clearly, this qualification is not fit for purpose. It is an entry-level qualification which permits a trainer to work in an RTO delivering and assessing nationally recognised qualifications and skill sets but the requirements are well above entry-level.

There are also some ridiculous evidence requirements. Imagine you are not yet employed by an RTO. You have been offered a job but first you need TAE40116. It will take you a year in most cases and by that time the job has gone. Also, some evidence requirements cannot be achieved unless you are working in an RTO. Take TAEASS402. It requires you to conduct 5 assessments of a full unit of competency under the supervision of a qualified trainer/assessor. The candidates for assessment must be “real VET learners”. This is Catch-22. You can’t provide the evidence except in an RTO. You can’t work in an RTO unless you hold TAE40116.

The other main problem is that TAEASS502 Design and Develop Assessment Tools is now a core unit. This is a Diploma level unit. If you are working in an RTO and hold TAE40110 then, as at 1 July this year you are out of a job unless you also hold TAEASS502 and TAELLN411. Let’s assume you train apprentices in carpentry at TAFE. You don’t use computers to create complex documents. Nor are you an academic. Nevertheless, somehow or other you need to plan, design, develop, trial and review 3 different assessment tools for 3 full units of competency – one being RPL.

I have spoken to my local MP who promises that the Minister for VET will contact me directly. Hopefully this will happen, because so far, every letter I have written to the numerous VET Ministers in the past has been answered by a bureaucrat. I doubt the letter was even read by the Minister.

Hope springs eternal. I’m not giving up.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
0407 131 075

Changes to the BSB Training Package

BSB Training Package Changes

PwC has made changes to a number of qualifications in the BSB Business Services Training Package.  These have come out of the blue.  I know that PwC asked for submissions and consultation earlier in the year but in the past the ISCs used to release the draft qualification and units prior to actually putting them up for endorsement, so that RTOs had time to prepare for the change.

This didn’t happen.  The first I knew was today when I received the notification from training.gov.au.  So now it will be a mad scramble to revise everything.

 

My concern is with 2 qualifications in particular:

BSB51915 Diploma of Leadership and Management – now BSB51918 (Release 1).  An equivalent qualification and the main changes are to:

  • Develop and use emotional intelligence (now BSBLDR511) and
  • Communicate with influence (now BSBLDR513).

These 2 units will be my priority to update.  There is also a Release 2.0 of BSBCUS501 but it’s just a minor change to the assessment conditions.  With the other units, PwC still has the old assessment conditions which is probably an oversight.

 

BSB41415 Certificate IV in Work Health and Safety (Release 3).  Again equivalent to the previous release.

  • Analyse and present research information (now BSBRES411) has been changed, so that will be my next step.

The only other change is to update the codes for TAEASS301 and TAEDEL301 so that they are current.  I already have these 2 units.

 

Sandy Welton

sandytrainer@dodo.com.au

0407 131 075

My Submission to PwC

My Feedback to PwC on TAE40116 Package

This document is in response to PwC’s request for feedback on the TAE Training Package.

I am an instructional designer with several RTOs who use my resources for TAE40116 and TAE50116. I am also a trainer/assessor for International Teacher Training Academy (ITTA), supporting over 50 students undertaking TAE qualifications. This gives me valuable information on the practicalities of delivery and assessment of TAE40116.

Firstly, we should look at the intent of the qualification, as stated in its description, namely:
This qualification reflects the roles of individuals delivering training and assessment services in the vocational education and training (VET) sector.
This qualification (or the skill sets derived from units of competency within it) is also suitable preparation for those engaged in the delivery of training and assessment of competence in a workplace context, as a component of a structured VET program.

Therefore, this is an entry level qualification, designed for those who have vocational qualifications and expertise and wish to become trainer/assessors either in an RTO or an enterprise.

We must therefore bear in mind, when considering the evidence requirements in the units of competency, that the candidate for assessment will not currently be working in an RTO. This means that the evidence requirements must be designed to be practical and achievable – which currently is not the case.

Trainer/assessors in the VET sector (an RTO)

Tasks they perform
An entry level trainer/assessor in an RTO performs the following tasks:
• Planning to deliver training and developing session plans.
• Delivering training:
This may be group training, individual coaching or (more frequently) training of remote learners through an on-line portal with electronic interaction and support.
• Reviewing learning resources provided to them and, in some cases, supplementing these. Learning resources are normally provided by the RTO. They are either developed in-house by experienced personnel or purchased                             (as with my resources).
• Conducting formative assessment to confirm that the learner is ready to move to the next phase in their learning pathway. Formative assessment resources are normally provided by the RTO and align with the learning resources.
• Conducting assessment through a learning and assessment pathway, providing feedback and support to candidates and complying with the Principles of Assessment in the process of conducting the assessment.
• Making the assessment judgement and ensuring that evidence is recorded and reported which meets the Rules of Evidence.
• Participating in validation of assessment tools and assessment judgements.
• Collaborating in moderation of assessment judgements, knowing when to seek the opinion of a lead assessor where they may have a borderline case.
• Participating, with the support of an experienced lead assessor, in conducting RPL evidence gathering and assessment.

Tasks they do not perform
An entry-level trainer/assessor does not perform the following tasks:
• Designing learning programs, delivery plans and assessment plans.
These are provided by the RTO. They must understand what these are and follow them – not create them.
• Designing assessment instruments and assessment tools.
These are provided by the RTO. They must understand what constitutes a valid assessment tool and they must be able to evaluate whether a tool which is provided to them meets the requirements of the unit of
competency or cluster.
If a trainer/assessor has the knowledge and skills to validate an assessment tool (TAEASS403) this is sufficient.

Enterprise trainers and assessors
TAE40116 is inappropriate for this cohort. There should be a separate qualification (not a skill set of units from TAE40116) which is designed specifically for this type of trainer/assessor, using industry consultation to identify exactly what skills and knowledge they require.

Background to issues with TAE40116
This qualification was intended to overcome issues related to “tick and flick” qualifications being issued by some RTOs for TAE40110. It does not follow that there was anything seriously wrong with the qualification TAE40110. The issue was, in fact, the failure to “police” the system through audit processes.

The introduction of TAE40116 was used as an opportunity to require all RTOs who needed scope to complete a new scope application, rather than the usual automatic approval if they held scope for the superseded qualification. Although the application process was extremely detailed, it is now clear that the problem has not been resolved. There are RTOs who have been granted scope for TAE40116 who are not providing quality training and assessment. Complaints to ASQA have been made. However, these RTOs continue to have scope.

Several of my client RTOs have received complaints from trainees about training received elsewhere. I have personally received calls from trainees who located me via my own website about one RTO which is registered in Australia but actually operates out of the Philippines. These people are always encouraged to make a formal complaint to ASQA.

TAE40116 as a “licence to practice”
The RTO Standards require all trainer/assessors in an RTO to hold this qualification (or, currently, TAE40110). It is possible to employ an unqualified trainer/assessor, provided they work under supervision. However, most RTOs are not prepared to do so for fear of non-compliance at audit. There is no clear definition of the term “under supervision” and is therefore open to interpretation at audit. This is too much of a risk.

For this reason, the TAE Certificate IV is, in effect, a licence to practice as a trainer/assessor in an RTO. For other licenced outcome qualifications, there are usually nationally adopted assessment tools that must be used. This does not apply to TAE40116.

Therefore, it would be valuable to develop a set of national assessment tools that must be used for the qualification. I have offered to assist with this development and so have a number of my colleagues who are highly experienced in this area.

Reviewing the current units of competency

TAEDES402 Use training packages and accredited courses to meet client needs
This unit is equivalent to TAEDES402A and the evidence requirements are practical. The unit should be the first in the learning pathway, as it introduces the learner to the VET system, training packages, qualifications, units of competency and the AQF.

This unit is not relevant for an enterprise trainer/assessor, as they are not delivering nationally recognised qualifications.

Recommendation: Retain this unit but clarify the wording of the PE so that it is clear exactly what “analysing” means in this context. Change the code to TAEDES401.

TAEDES401 – Design and develop learning programs
Trainer/assessors do not design and develop learning programs. In fact, RTOs do not use learning programs at all. They develop a Training and Assessment Strategy and this needs to be done at a higher level within the RTO.

There is no need for this unit. Some of the knowledge and performance requirements could be incorporated into TAEDES402.

Recommendation: Delete this unit

TAEASS401 Plan assessment activities and processes
Trainer/assessors do not design assessment plans. In fact, RTOs do not use assessment plans. They are incorporated into the Training and Assessment Strategy. However, it is useful to know how to plan assessment to ensure there is a range of activities which will meet all of the unit requirements.

Trainer/assessors at the entry level do not design assessment instruments. Nevertheless, they should know how to do so, as they will need this knowledge as they become more experienced.

Therefore, this unit should be retained.

Performance evidence:
   • planning and organising the assessment process on a minimum of five separate occasions

Five separate occasions is overkill. Note also that this PE is not clearly stated. The candidate can document assessment plans. The candidate can develop and document assessment instruments. The candidate cannot organise an assessment process because they do not work in an RTO.

Recommendation: re-word this PE.

• planning and organising two Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) assessments (which may be two of the five assessment processes above.)
We don’t create assessment plans for RPL. It takes as long as it takes and happens in different ways. This is the reason that RPL is so much more difficult than a learning and assessment pathway because there is less structure.
The candidate therefore cannot plan and organise an RPL assessment. They do not work in an RTO.
The candidate can develop and document an assessment instrument for RPL – but not a plan.

Recommendation: re-word this PE.

TAEASS402 Assess competence
This is the unit which is most unrealistic in its assessment requirements:

Performance evidence
The candidate must show evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in the elements and performance criteria of this unit, including:
   • assessment of at least five candidates within the vocational education and training (VET) context against at least one endorsed or accredited unit of competency according to the organisation’s assessment processes and practices.

This has been interpreted by ASQA as “real VET candidates”. The only “real VET candidates” that can be assessed are those who are undertaking a qualification with an RTO. To repeat the point yet again the candidate is not working in an RTO.

They cannot therefore conduct assessment on 5 “real VET candidates”.

   • using recognition of prior learning (RPL) processes in the assessment of at least one candidate (which may be one of the five candidates above)
    • making reasonable adjustments in the assessment of at least one candidate.
The assessments must be undertaken under the supervision of a qualified assessor and cover an entire unit of competency for each candidate, including:
   • the application of different assessment methods and instruments involving a range of activities and events
   • using two-way communication and feedback with the candidate
   • exercising judgement in making the assessment decision
   • recording and reporting assessment outcomes in accordance with the assessment system and organisational, legal and ethical requirements
   • reviewing the assessment process.

To make the point yet again – how can a candidate conduct the assessment under the supervision of a qualified assessor if they are not working in an RTO? This can be achieved in a workshop group training environment where the trainer/assessor acts in the role of the qualified assessor but not otherwise. Most TAE candidates are undertaking the course remotely. Very few are in a position to attend workshops.

In relation to using two-way communication and feedback with the candidate, this has been interpreted by ASQA as oral communication. This simply doesn’t reflect the reality. Assessments are submitted. The candidate is not present when the assessor conducts the assessment. The assessor then responds in writing. The problem here is with the interpretation. As assessors we do have two-way communication with our candidates but it is usually by email or handing back the marked assessment, with the odd telephone conversation if necessary.

ASQA is demanding direct observation of the 5 assessments demonstrating “interact with others” and “oral communication”. Unless the assessment is face to face (which is the exception) this can only be achieved with a video. We are already encountering situations where a video is not permitted by the employer or a video would contravene the Privacy Principles.

Recommendations:
• Delete the requirement for “real VET learners” and allow for simulated assessments, which allow us to truly test the candidate’s ability to conduct assessment because we can design the tasks to trap common errors made during
assessment. It also allows us to properly benchmark the assessment tasks.
• Change the requirement to writing detailed, supportive and accurate feedback to the candidate (instead of two-way communication) or make it clear in another way that two-way communication is not necessarily face to face oral
communication.
• Delete “under the supervision of a qualified assessor” as this can only occur in an RTO. The assessment which the candidate submits is already assessed by a qualified assessor.

TAEASS403 Participate in assessment validation
This unit was a definite improvement, in that the candidate is now required to map the tools – which is essential to validation.

I think it’s unfortunate that the unit only relates to validation of assessment tools. Trainer/assessors must also validate assessment judgements. This is a requirement of the Standards.

TAEASS502 Design and develop assessment tools
This unit should never have been made a core in the Certificate IV. It is at Diploma level and needs to be. In the previous iterations of the Cert IV, this unit was an elective – which is appropriate.

Note also – Many people are slipping through the net. They already hold TAEASS502B and are therefore entitled to Credit Transfer. However, their original qualification was a tick and flick and they have no more idea of how to develop an assessment tool than my pet cat.

Recommendations:
• Return to making this unit an elective.
• Change the unit requirements so that it is NOT equivalent to TAEASS502 – in the same way TAEASS401 and 403 required further learning and assessment for upgrade. That way we will be able to identify those who already hold
the unit but don’t have the skills and knowledge and we can build them into the upgrade.

TAEDEL401 Plan, organise and deliver group-based learning
There is an argument for making this unit an elective. Group-based learning is declining in favour of remote learning. My personal preference is to retain this unit as a core, as it provides opportunities to develop overall training delivery skills, whether the person will end up training groups or not.

Performance evidence
facilitating group-based learning by preparing and delivering at least three training sessions, including:
   • at least two consecutive sessions of at least 40 minutes duration, that follow one of the learning program designs, to a learner group of at least eight individuals
   • at least one session delivered to a learner group of at least eight individuals, with evidence of how the characteristics and needs of this group were addressed
   • identifying and responding to individual needs
   • accessing and using documented resources, and any support personnel required to guide inclusive practices.

This is completely impractical. It is not always (or even usually) possible to get a group of 8 individuals together for training.

Assuming TAE40116 is being delivered face to face in a workshop and the deliveries are observed during the workshop, then a minimum of 9 is required. This has effectively precluded RTOs from offering workshops for less than 9 participants.

If, as is usually the case, the candidate is self-paced working remotely – but not in an RTO – it is unconscionable to require them to gather together a group of 8 individuals for 2 group training sessions, one following from the other.

Note the last two PE. These are vague. Is the third session supposed to include some sort of reasonable adjustment for a disability or LLN need? What “documented resources” are supposed to be used and for what purpose? It says “any support personnel required”. What if no support personnel are required in the circumstances? Does that mean we can ignore this?

It would be unusual to have a real situation where the candidate can deliver training to a group of 8 where there is one or more participant with a special need. Therefore this is an unrealistic requirement. It would be far better to enhance the knowledge evidence in this area, so that the candidate demonstrates that they know what they should do if the situation occurs.

In reality, this third session with “special needs” is usually a role play if done in a workshop. For instance, one person may pretend to be blind and put on dark glasses. Everyone has a laugh but it doesn’t demonstrate any kind of competency in performance.

If the candidate is delivering this group training remotely to a person with special needs (assuming this might be possible) we run foul of privacy legislation

What do we really need to see, remembering that many trainer/assessors won’t deliver group training face to face and that group training on-line will become more and more frequent?

Recommendations:
• Remove the requirement for 8 learners.
• Make it clear in the PE that group delivery may be face to face or via electronic means such as a webinar.
• Enhance the KE to cover addressing special needs and inclusivity in detail, as it relates to group delivery
• Reduce to 2 deliveries following on from one another, 30 minutes in duration.

TAEDEL402 Plan, organise and facilitate learning in the workplace
There is even more of an argument to make this unit an elective. This is an excellent unit for an enterprise trainer but hardly relevant for an RTO trainer/assessor.

This unit focuses on apprenticeships and traineeships from the point of view of supporting learning in the workplace. While a number of RTO trainer/assessors support learning for apprentices and trainees and need to understand how this works, this is only a proportion of the total.

Not every RTO trainer/assessor will be in a position to use the skills and knowledge comprised in this unit.

Recommendations:
• Make this an elective in TAE40116
• Make it a core in the new qualification Cert IV in Enterprise Training

TAELLN411 Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills
The VET sector is coming to terms with the fact that they must also address LLN at the same time as providing vocational training. Why this is necessary is another issue, and begs further investigation of the education system as a whole.

My main concern with this unit is the requirement in several places to seek the advice of a “qualified LLN practitioner”. Unfortunately there is no such thing. This presents TAE trainees with a real problem. I know of one RTO who advises their trainees to “Google it”. I have received several calls from such trainees because their own RTO was singularly unhelpful. (Incidentally, this is the same RTO which is based in the Philippines.)

We could overcome this problem quite easily. We now have a skill set comprising TAELLN411, 412 and 413. I have already recommended to PwC that this skill set could state in its description that attainment of the full skill set constitutes qualification as an LLN practitioner.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
tel: 0407 131 075

RTOs with TAE Scope

TAE Scope

Looking at training.gov.au today, it shows 8 RTOs with scope for TAE50116 Diploma of VET.
For TAE40116 Certificate IV in training and assessment, there are now 18 RTOs with scope.

Two of these purchased complete sets of my resources. A third purchased all of my RPL resources for TAE50116 and some of my learning and assessment pathway resources plus RPL for TAE40116, including the assessor skill set.
This gives me a great deal of confidence, although I am definitely not complacent.

There are now a handful of other RTOs who have purchased my resources for their initial applications or for submission as rectification, and we still don’t know how they will go.
What we have to remember about this TAE application for scope is that ASQA is looking for more than just compliant resources.

The training and assessment strategy is critical. In the TAS, the delivery and assessment strategies need to be spelled out in detail and meet the requirements for volume of learning, actual training delivery, assessment resources and environment as well as a range of assessment methods.

On top of that, ASQA is scrutinising the RTO’s past history of audit compliance and also its records of delivering TAE40110. They are usually asking to see portfolios of evidence of current and previous students.

This is why you can’t just order my resources. First of all I need a long telephone conversation with you, discussing your training and assessment strategy and your past history. There is no point spending money to purchase compliant resources unless you have everything else in place and can demonstrate a strong commitment to quality.

Congratulations to my clients who have been approved for scope and good luck to my new clients in their applications.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
0407 131 075

TAESS00009 Foundation Skills

TAESS00009 – Address Foundation Skills in Vocational Practice Skill Set

I have now completed the development of resources for this skill set. The units required are:
• TAELLN411 Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills
• TAELLN412 Access resources and support to address foundation skills in vocational practice
• TAELLN413 Integrate foundation skills into vocational training delivery

The resources for TAELLN411 are stand-alone. This is a core unit in TAE40116.

For TAELLN412 and TAELLN413, I have clustered the learning and assessment pathway resources. I can’t imagine a situation when a learner would do one of these units without wanting to also do the other.

This makes the learner guide somewhat larger than I normally like. It is 50 pages whereas normally I prefer a learner guide to be no more than 30 pages. I have always worked on the basis that “less is more”. Rather than swamp the learner with reading, I like to give them just enough. That way, learning is consolidated through activities in the assessment tasks.

There are 6 detailed assessment tasks and 2 final assessment tasks. TAELLN412 and 413 have quite a number of overlaps, so the assessment tasks are designed to address the requirements of both units. So instead of one mapping summary at the back of the assessor guide, we have two.
I decided not to cluster the RPL tools, so as to allow for more options and versatility. The way they are written, the assessment process can be easily clustered when required.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
0407 131 075

The Search For Specialist LLN Practitioners

Skill Set for LLN Practitioners?

I must admit I hadn’t even noticed there was an LLN skill set until a client told me.

It is TAESS00009 – Address Foundation Skills in Vocational Practice Skill Set, with 3 units:
• TAELLN411 Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills
• TAELLN412 Access resources and support to address foundation skills in vocational practice
• TAELLN413 Integrate foundation skills into vocational training delivery

So this is my current project and I am finding it challenging but will get there. About half way through so far.
Of course I already have resources for TAELLN411 because it’s a core unit in TAE40116, so I only need to develop the other two units.

The first thought was to cluster all three units together, but it’s very likely people will already hold TAELLN411, so it makes sense to leave this unit out of the cluster.
TAELLN412 and TAELLN413 really do need to be clustered though. There’s an awful lot of overlap – a lot more than I’ve seen in other units of competency.

Incidentally, these units both require the candidate to demonstrate consulting / collaborating with “specialist LLN practitioners” – so I went looking for definitions and discovered there aren’t any.

The advice I received from PwC is:
“In short, because there is no single definition of a specialist LLN practitioner, foundation skills delivery requires a diversity of practitioners from multiple fields of expertise and many niche areas of specialisation. Adult language, literacy and numeracy skills development is provided by a range of training organisations in vocational education settings, workplaces and the community.”
Apart from a couple of advanced diplomas, there’s no specialist LLN qualification, so I have suggested to PwC that they consider whether this skill set may fulfil that role.

Sandy Welton
sandytrainer@dodo.com.au
0407 131 075

No TAE40116 Approvals

The more things change – the more they stay the same.

I notice that to date not a single RTO has been approved for scope for TAE40116, the new Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, even though it was released in April this year. The same applies for TAE50116 the Diploma of VET.

My gut feeling is that ASQA is sitting on the small private RTO applications unless they are non-compliant, because I know of RTOs who applied months ago and have heard nothing. On the other hand, I understand scope has been refused to a number of RTOs.

It will be interesting if ASQA is waiting for the TAFEs to apply, and I hope that’s not the case because TAFEs are large bureaucratic organisations and it seems likely they will have trouble getting together all of the required evidence for submission.

In the meantime I have been developing resources for TAE50116 which of course will cross over to TAE50216 the Diploma of Training Design and Development. I’m a significant way through this development and have updated my list of units to reflect this. (You can download the list from this site.)

Those who are canny, and want TAE50116 will probably apply for TAE50216 and select units that cross over. That way, as soon as somebody has scope for TAE50116 they will be able to credit transfer.

I’m expecting there will be a demand for the Diploma for several reasons. Firstly, anyone who delivers TAE40116 must have the Diploma. Secondly, there is no entry requirement for the Diploma and it doesn’t seem to change nearly so frequently as the Cert IV, so there will be people who hope to bypass the Cert IV and go straight to the Diploma.

I (and some of my colleagues) have recommended to PwC that this problem should be looked into. My clients would not accept a candidate for a TAE Diploma unless they have significant experience and hold either TAE40110 or TAE40116, but this is not spelled out. The only way to ensure there is an entry level is to make the statement in the qualification.

In the meantime we are in limbo. No doubt ASQA will be so busy reviewing new applications for scope they will have little time (or perhaps inclination) to concentrate on RTOs delivering TAE40110 for knock-down prices and short time frames. Since there is an 18 month teach-out period, this means we will continue to see people who hold the qualification but are not really qualified.

Sandy Welton

TAE40116 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

As I said in my previous blog, I have the following units ready to go, as learning and assessment pathway and RPL resources.

These are the units required so as to apply for scope for TAE40116:
• TAEASS502 Design and develop assessment tools
• TAEASS401 Plan assessment activities and processes
• TAEASS402 Assess competence
• TAEASS403 Participate in assessment validation

TAE50116 Diploma of Vocational Education and Training and TAE50216 Diploma of Training Design and Development

I have now completed the development of resources for the following units, which are those ASQA requires to make application for initial scope.

TAE50116 Diploma of Vocational Education and Training
• TAEASS502 Design and develop assessment tools
• TAEASS501 Provide advanced assessment practice

TAE50216 Diploma of Training Design and Development
• TAEASS502 Design and develop assessment tools
• TAEDES501 Design and develop learning strategies

Again, they include learning and assessment pathway and RPL resources.

Where to next?

Now I propose to go back to TAE40116 and finish the rest of the units. If I start this now, they will be ready by the time they are needed – bearing in mind that ASQA is now saying the application process is 3-6 months. There are still no RTO’s with scope for TAE40116.

I am planning to complete the TAE40116 development in 2 months. Then I will go back and do the rest of the units for TAE50116 and TAE50216. Unit selection for the Diplomas will be on the basis of whether they cross over into both qualifications.

PwC has some webinars and seminars coming up where they are seeking input into how TAE40116 needs to be changed. I’ve already been talking to them about this, and will be adding my recommendations in the webinars.

The problem, in my opinion, is only partly related to the unit requirements. I am also concerned about the trainer/assessor qualifications stated in the RTO Standards. I can see people bypassing TAE40116 and going straight to the Diplomas – and if an RTO already has scope for TAE50111 and/or TAE50211, they can upgrade without stringent review by ASQA.

So it’s likely that the “tick and flick” process will simply move over to the Diplomas.

Such is life … we will just have to wait and see.

Sandy Welton

TAE40110 and VET Reform

In the space of just over 12 months, there have been three different ministers for VET. The current minister is Luke Hartsuyker, who has swapped portfolios with Simon Birmingham. I have just written to the Minister. This was the gist of the letter.

Recommendation 1
• Open and transparent communication of government decisions together with the reasons for the decisions.
• Ensure that the infrastructure is in place to implement government decisions for change by the date announced.

Service Skills Organisations replace Industry Skills Councils
This decision has never been clearly explained, although there were a lot of woolly statements about involving industry in the development of training packages and something called a “competitive” approach. The change was announced to take place by 1 January 2016 but it hasn’t happened yet and looks like it’s a long way off. The latest information is at this link: https://www.education.gov.au/skills-service-organisations

Australian Industry Skills Council replaced the National Skills Standards Council
The NSSC was dissolved by the COAG Industry and Skills Council on 3 April 2014. The reasons for this decision were not publicised. The AISC’s first meeting was in June 2015. The first communiqué announcing endorsements was on 27 July 2015 after their second meeting. So between April 2014 and June 2015 there was no official endorsement body. Another case where a decision was announced before the infrastructure was in place.

Training Package format “streamlined and simplified”
According to a SCOTESE publication in November 2012, all training packages were to have transitioned to the new format by 31 December 2015. A search at www.training.gov.au shows 50 current training packages with the old codes. Yet another instance of announcing a cut-off date and not having the infrastructure in place to support it. No doubt much of the reason is the period of limbo where there was no endorsement body.

Recommendation 2
• Give a precise direction to ASQA to search for RTOs advertising TAE40110 courses less then 4 weeks duration and/or less than $1,000.
• Instruct ASQA to conduct audits of their training and assessment strategies, assessment resources and a random sample of assessment decisions.
We all know that modifications to the qualification packaging rules or wording of the units will do nothing to improve the quality of training and assessment. This can only be achieved by weeding out those RTOs providing sub-standard training and “tick and flick” assessments for the TAE Cert IV. Since TAE40110 is the qualification underpinning training and assessment practices, this qualification should be a priority for ASQA.
I am still awaiting the Minister’s reply (cross fingers).

Update on resource development
I have completed learning and assessment resources, including RPL tools, for:
• BSB41415 Certificate IV in Work Health and Safety
• BSB42015 Certificate IV in Leadership and Management
• BSB51915 Diploma of Leadership and Management
I’m pleased to say that demand is high and feedback has been excellent.
In December I started updating my learning and assessment pathway resources for TAE40110. The Design and Delivery sector units are completed but I will wait to put them up on the web site until we know what happens at the next AISC meeting on 18 February. At that stage I will update the Assessment sector units– which are the units most likely to have major changes.
I have been asked to develop resources for BSB50615 Diploma of Human Resources Management and am considering this seriously. Quite a few electives overlap with units I have already developed for BSB51915 Diploma of Leadership and Management.

If you might be interested in resources for BSB50615, I would appreciate a quick email, so that I can have some idea of demand.

Sandy Welton

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