RTOs are responsible for submitting annual declarations of compliance as part of ASQA’s audit report. While this declaration is an annual occurrence for RTOs, it can still be an overwhelming task, given the number of requirements needed to comply whilst you also manage your training delivery.
If you’re relatively new to the game, performance assessments or audits are indicators of compliance that provide information on whether your RTO meets ASQA’s standard requirements. In this article, we’ll tell you all about audit standards and how your RTO can deal with them to ensure compliant ASQA audit results.
Read our related article on What You Need to Know about Annual Declaration on Compliance.
What does ASQA’s audit report assess?
ASQA assesses how well you perform against regulatory standards such as Standards for RTOs 2015, The National Code 2018, and ELICOS National Standards 2018.
This article focuses on the Standards for RTOs 2015, which are essential for RTOs aiming to submit their ASQA declaration of compliance.
The 8 standards RTOs should know according to the Standards for RTOs 2015
The eight standards listed below are critical aspects that ASQA’s audit report focuses on. These standards fall under three categories; training and assessment, obligations to learners and clients, and RTO governance and administration.
Training and assessment standards
Standard 1: The RTO’s training and assessment strategies meet current learner needs and the training package and VET accredited course requirements
ASQA requires RTOs to provide training and assessment that reflects current industry needs, delivered by qualified trainers and assessors, and report compliance on VET accredited courses. Additionally, RTOs must present a training and assessment strategy (TAS) which shows the amount of training required for learners depending on their current skills and knowledge.
Your RTO should have a detailed TAS consistent with the training package and VET accredited course requirements to maintain compliance. You should also provide evidence that your trainers and assessor have appropriate industry skills in the course they deliver.
Assessment is also essential under Standard 1, so your RTO must mention they are following the Principles of Assessment and Rules of Evidence when conducting evaluations.
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Standard 2: RTO operations are quality assured
Your RTO is tasked with developing, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating quality training and assessment to comply with ASQA’s audit report. Suppose your RTO uses third-party resources or training platforms arrangements when delivering training. In that case, you should ensure that it is also compliant with audit standards, as this will reflect entirely on ASQA’s audit results on your RTO.
To comply with Standard 2, your RTO should systematically monitor and evaluate your training, including quality/performance indicator data, validation outcomes, client, trainer and assessor feedback, and complaints and appeals. It’s important to note that this standard varies from one RTO to another and will depend on each RTO’s operating characteristics and business objectives.
Standard 3: The RTO’s AQF certification documentation meets industry requirements
Once your learners complete their training and assessment, your RTO is responsible for issuing an AQF certification documentation within 30 days. It should also be noted that a statement of attainment should only be issued when a student leaves a training program, either by completing it or not.
Your RTO’s AQF certifications must follow the standard requirements for issuing a testamur which states that your RTO’s name, code, and logo are present in the issuance along with the awarded AQF qualification’s title and code, and the NRT logo.
Standards under obligations to learners and clients
Standard 4: The RTO is transparent about its services to prospective and current learners and clients
For Standards 4 and 5, RTOs must be transparent with their operations. Your RTO must provide marketing and advertising information that accurately reflects their services and performance. This standard is essential since one of the ASQA quality indicators relies heavily on learners’ responses.
To be compliant, your RTO should ensure that its marketing and advertising information reflects the services it provides on its scope or registration. It should also mention whether it employs a third-party organisation during the recruitment process.
Standard 5: The RTO ensures that learners know their rights and obligations
Like the previous standard, Standard 5 requires RTOs to inform the learner of the services it provides and the learner’s rights and obligations. The information you must provide includes:
- Fees paid by the learner to the RTO
- Payment terms and conditions, including deposits and refunds
- RTO services
- Student’s rights and obligations
To ensure compliance, your RTO should provide information via documents like an enrolment form, policy, employment contract or agreement, induction handbook or documented practice, and training plan or training contract. This makes it easier for your RTO to compile evidence, providing better outcomes within ASQA’s audit results.
Check out the New TAE Training Package Update.
Standard 6: The RTO is fair and efficient in handling complaints and appeals
It can be intimidating for RTOs to deal with complaints and appeals since many think this will affect their ASQA’s quality indicator score. While quality indicators are an essential part of the assessment, it doesn’t mean that receiving complaints and appeals is the end of your RTO.
How your RTO handles complaints and appeals will determine your compliance under Standard 6, which assesses RTOs’ ability to deal with such instances fairly and transparently.
To do this, your RTO should implement a transparent complaints and appeals policy informing learners about their rights. Your RTO should also keep records of all complaints and appeals and their outcomes and have a clear mitigation plan to prevent a recurrence of complaints.
RTO governance and administration standards
Standard 7: The RTO’s governance and business operations are systematic and compliant
Standard 7 examines RTOs’ business operations to ensure they comply with the Financial Viability Risk Assessment Requirements (FVRAR).
Your RTO should submit the financial viability risk assessment tool, which requires you to provide information on your organisation’s financial viability, including your financial history and projections. Additionally, submitting data on your RTO’s business quality indicators and total VET activity, along with preparing an annual declaration of compliance can help you overcome auditing challenges under this standard.
Standard 8: The RTO cooperates with the VET Regulator and maintains regular compliance
While this is common knowledge for many, it bears repetition that RTOs must actively cooperate with VET Regulators. By providing accurate and up-to-date information requests, quality/performance indicator data, and notice of third-party participation, you can boost your score in the compliance audit by showing that your RTO maintains a systematic collection process.
ASQA’s audit reports rely heavily on the eight standards meant to assess whether an RTO can provide high-quality training to learners.
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These standards may be overwhelming, especially for those who are new to the VET industry but having the right resources can help with challenging requirements. Compliant Learning Resources has training resources packed with compliance features that can help your RTO follow ASQA standards effortlessly. The high-quality training and assessment materials undergo rigorous validation processes and are created in collaboration with industry experts to ensure compliance with the training and assessment standards.
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