Providing training and assessment with the help of a distance delivery mode can form an innovative and industry-current space for learners to develop skills and knowledge. This is when technologies are cheaper and are more easily accessible.
Registered training organizations need to ensure that methods used to deliver by distance get the same quality outcomes for learners. They need to have strategic planning for the business to ensure the same quality outcomes.
RTOs need to be confident that the delivery and assessment practices can produce job-ready graduates. Those practices and the training package requirements are aligned with each other.
Providing Training With The Use Of Distance Delivery
When RTOs are delivering by distance, they need to consider particular requirements of the delivery model to ensure learning facilities, resources and equipment are accessible and sufficient.
- The resources need to be engaging for the learner, and the content needs to be delivered in different ways to encourage learners to absorb knowledge and practice the skills. Many RTOs also support different styles of learners. The previously delivered contents in a full-day classroom environment will probably not be transferred well to a recorded video presentation of the same length.
- However, the registered training organizations can structure the same learning to include activities, additional reading/research, online discussions amongst learners and real-time webinars that images learners with their peers.
The structure is essential in distance learning as students progress through the VET course. Students must be encouraged to complete learning tasks and other checkpoints to ensure they develop the capability and participate in assessments.
Completing such tasks allows the trainer and assessor to check for comprehension and provide more support in the required areas.
The content has to be accurate and updated with other resources and needs to meet training package requirements. The RTOs that use self-developed content need to check that the content is relevant to the industry regularly, and links to external resources also need to be monitored.
Different technologies can be used to provide training. These could differ in cost, accessibility, user skill requirements and time needed to develop the resource. Some examples include:
- ‘Loaded’ iPads
- Cloud technology
- Learning Management System
- Augmented reality
- Video calls
- Social media
- Stimulation tools
- Wearable technologies
- Online conferencing
To decide what resources will be used, RTOs need to consider the suitability of the VET course and the learner unit.
Conducting Assessment Using Distance Delivery Methods
To determine a learner’s competency, the RTO needs to ensure that assessments address all assessment needs of a unit of competency. The requirement is the same whether the assessment is conducted real-time, distance or by online delivery mode.
In some cases, an assessment may be able to develop and be conducted at a distance easily. According to some top RTO compliance consultants RTO has to consider the specific needs of a competency unit and develop an assessment system that is on par with the requirements. Other things include:
Demonstrating practical skills
RTOs need to demonstrate all the performance evidence requirements and do them in the context of assessment conditions. The assessment conditions need to describe the important conditions required during the assessment.
This could include equipment/materials, physical conditions, contingencies and relationships with other people/timeframes. RTOs could also submit a financial viability risk assessment tool.
RTOs have to consider that an assessor can gather legitimate, authentic, sufficient and current evidence of practical skills and how they retain evidence of assessment for record-keeping and validation purposes.
Some competency units need assessment to be conducted in a workplace under observation. Where an assessor cannot attend a workplace to conduct an assessment, RTOs can consider real-time observation from other mediums. For example, RTOs can-
- Use Skype and other video conferencing software.
- Use video recordings.
When students are working, assessors can remotely view the student’s participation in activities and use a similar observation checklist on the site. They can continue to make valid and sufficient judgments.
Using third parties for collecting evidence of competency
In cases where assessors cannot directly gather all required evidence to support a competency judgment. In that case, the evidence could be reported or gathered by other people that would commonly be workplace supervisors.
In a few instances, assessment conditions allow the assessment to be normally conducted in a workplace or carried out in a simulated environment. When stimulated assessments are conducted, the environment must reflect those found in the workplace to be as real as possible.
Assessments have to be conducted in a particular environment using equipment and resources given in the assessment conditions field of the assessment requirements. The assessment activities need to be reasonable and realistic in terms of scale.
RTOs need to review particular training package requirements when stimulation is allowed. It determines if the learner can properly replicate a stimulating working environment remotely.
Mandatory work placement
It is a form of assessment in some qualifications and units of competency. It needs a learner to complete a certain time on the job before their competency is determined. RTOs can record evidence of work placement using log books that workplace supervisors confirm.
RTOs need to maintain regular contact with workplace supervisors to monitor student progress and maintain the authenticity of the assessment.
Authenticity of assessment
Before competency is determined, an assessor must be assured that the gathered evidence belongs to the assessed student and provides evidence of their skills and knowledge.
This can be challenging if one delivers distance training where there are more opportunities for submitting tasks of others than in a normal classroom setting.
Delivery by distance does not remove the responsibility of an RTO to verify the student enrolled in a real-time course. Despite the delivery method, one needs to demonstrate how to verify the identity of students.
Securing assessments with various distance delivery methods can require time, support and commitment. But once the proper assessments are in place, there are many benefits. That is why there is a hike in the demand for RTO for sale in Australia. RTOs can be confident that their assessment meets the needed standards and are relevant to the industry. This could save a lot of time, frustration and negative energy. The assessors can also feel confident about the assessment decisions and save time while assessing students or dealing with them.