Industry currency is important so that learners can gain industry-relevant, valuable skills to become job and future ready – improving the RTO’s relationship with industry and the reputation of VET. To deliver quality training and assessment, trainers and assessors need to also be industry specialists, making them dual professionals. RTOs must demonstrate to ASQA that their teachers have current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning that informs their training and assessment.
Trainers and assessors need to maintain their industry currency by staying up to date with current industry knowledge, skills and practice. This enables trainers and assessors to deliver and assess vocational training relevant to industry.
While there’s no specific method providers must use to record industry consultation evidence, the Standards outline some ways trainers and assessors can demonstrate industry currency:
Maintaining industry currency provides many benefits for the RTO and its learners.
Learners want training that is relevant, based on real world examples and tailored to industry needs. When trainers and assessors maintain their industry currency, it allows them to modify their training to provide more relevant learning and assessment. This has flow-on effects of:
RTOs are required to show how they have maintained the currency of their trainers’ industry skills and trainer/assessor competencies, in compliance with the Standards. To do this, RTOs should:
According to ASQA, RTOs can use a number of different strategies for industry engagement, including:
Information obtained from this industry engagement is useful for RTOs to:
By undertaking industry engagement, RTOs can ensure that the training and assessment they provide gives graduates industry-relevant skills and knowledge and are able to apply these in the workplace.
Although industry currency is highly important, there isn’t much formal guidance available to help RTOs with their approach. Some RTOs rely on industry-specific guidance provided in training packages, but often this isn’t stated in training packages. This means many RTOs make their own individual currency decisions.
Some examples of these individual decisions include currency periods and activities that contribute to maintaining industry currency. To determine a currency period, RTOs need to consider factors that are relevant to them, in consultation with industry, such as:
Similarly, there’s no single approach to determining the activities that contribute to maintaining industry currency. RTOs and assessors need to determine the right combination of activities to suit the kind of knowledge and skill they have to maintain.
Managing trainer competencies and evidence can be a laborious task, but with a good student management system (SMS), competency and evidence statuses can be viewed at a glance. With a Trainer Matrix, trainers are able to upload evidence such as professional development, currency and industry qualifications while mapping to a single unit of competency, or an entire qualification. Compliance Managers can then review evidence submissions, request more information from the trainer and validate the evidence. A great SMS can also trigger automatic notifications to trainers and key compliance staff prior to evidence expiring.
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