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How to renew your RTO's registration – everything you need to know

April 13, 2021

RTOs have to meet many requirements and responsibilities, including complying with legislation and ASQA requirements, TAE delivery obligations, data collection and provision, and more. Here’s a complete breakdown of everything you need to know about renewing your RTO’s registration with ASQA. Please note this information doesn’t apply to CRICOS institutions.

1. Check your RTO’s expiry date

Every RTO needs to send their renewal application at least 90 days before their registration expiry date to continue offering training. Your RTO must also have conducted training and assessment during the current registration period to be eligible for renewal. You can find your RTO’s expiry date on your provider profile on training.gov.au.

If a completed registration renewal application is provided to ASQA before the cut-off date with all fees paid, your RTO’s registration will continue until a decision is provided on your renewal request.

2. Limits of renewal

A standard renewal of registration application doesn’t include adding, transitioning or removing items from your scope of registration, such as qualifications, accredited courses or units of competency. There’s a separate application for changing the scope of your registration, which can be found here.

3. How ASQA assesses your application

ASQA states they take a ‘risk-management approach’ when evaluating applications, to protect the quality and reputation of the Australian VET sector. This means they direct their focus on identifying and treating the most significant risks, such as training providers that certify a student having competencies that don’t reflect their skills, knowledge and attitudes. Aside from inadequate training, they also address issues that are likely to impact stakeholders' confidence in the VET sector, especially risks that result in significant harm or affect ASQA’s ability to carry out their functions.

Levels of risk

There are two levels of risk that ASQA manages:

  • Operational risk (provider)
  • Strategic risk (systemic) – risks that exist across the whole sector or in a significant number of providers. These risks may relate to a particular sub sector within the VET system and/or a specific type of qualification, course, or method of delivery.

A serious systemic risk may result in ASQA conducting a strategic review.

Here’s ASQA’s Risk Framework for further information.

Risk assessment

Firstly, ASQA will make sure:

What else will ASQA check?

When will ASQA reject your application for renewal?

Your application may be rejected if:

  • your RTO has not delivered any training or assessment during the previous year of registration
  • your application remains incomplete after ASQA has requested further information or evidence
  • your nominated personnel fail to meet fit and proper requirements.

4. Renewal audit

During the risk assessment process, ASQA may decide an audit is necessary, which will review your RTO’s compliance with the VET Quality Framework. This will include your RTO’s strategies, resources and materials your organisation uses to deliver training products on your scope of registration. It may also include:

  • the effectiveness of your management systems, delivery strategies and other materials
  • whether the delivery strategies meet the requirements of training packages and accredited courses
  • the suitability of facilities and equipment
  • the credentials of the nominated delivery personnel

The auditing process may also result in your organisation being registered to provide training for specific products while being rejected for others, or other conditions.

Preparing for the audit

It’s important to be prepared for an audit with documents such as:

  • Details of each trainer and assessor’s qualifications, training, assessment and vocational competence, and VET and industry currency
  • Enrolment forms, evidence and information
  • Strategies for training and assessment, including learning resources
  • Marketing materials

...and any other information required.

What happens if ASQA identifies non-compliance?

ASQA will give you 20 working days to provide evidence demonstrating actions taken to achieve full compliance. This will be analysed to inform the approval decision.

5. The renewal decision

The renewal decision will be written, and sent within 30 days of the decision being made. If your RTO has been renewed – congratulations! You’ll be sent a current certificate of registration and details of any specific conditions which ASQA has applied to your registration.

If you receive a renewal rejection, ASQA will explain the reasons for the rejection.

6. How do I contest an ASQA decision?

Under Sections 199 to 203 of the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011, an applicant can apply for a review of certain kinds of ASQA decisions.

7. New expiry date

If your application is renewed after the risk assessment (without an audit), your RTO’s new expiry date will be updated within 1-2 working days on asqanet.

With an audit, the relevant information in training.gov.au will usually be updated within 10 working days of the date the application is finalised.

To learn more, here are some FAQs that ASQA has answered.

Please note that this article uses information from ASQA at the time of publishing. Please refer to ASQA for any updated information on this topic, and any compliance questions.


  1. Renew registration | Australian Skills Quality Authority
  2. How we assess | Australian Skills Quality Authority
  3. SMS Essentials
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