RPL Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions about our specialist RPL services? We’ve collated our most useful answers to commonly asked questions about eligibility, evidence compilation, and qualification processes. If your question is still not covered, call us on 1300 501 813 and we’ll help answer any question you still might have.

All your Questions Answered

What is an RTO?

An RTO is a Registered Training Organisation. It is required to conform to the Standards for NVR Registered Training Organisations 2012 which is administered by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA). This ensures that the standard of training and assessment provided by RTOs meets the expected vocational benchmarks.

Elisse Education is not an RTO. We enter into partnership agreements with Australian RTOs and conduct assessment services on their behalf. The RTO conducts a full review of the RPL assessment undertaken by Elisse and issues the nationally recognised qualification.

A nationally recognised qualification is an accredited industry training package issued by an RTO. All RTOs use the same Training Packages throughout Australia so qualifications are recognised in all states and territories, and conform to the same competency requirements.Training packages list the Units of Competency (industry standards) that must be achieved for an individual to be deemed competent and issued with a qualification.

Qualifications help verify that an individual has the experience and skills required to effectively perform within a role. By having your industry experience verified with a nationally recognised qualification, you can effectively demonstrate that you meet the standards and expectations of an organisation. Managers are reassured by industry experience, so your chances for career advancement and promotion will greatly improve.

Qualifications help verify that an individual has the experience and skills required to effectively perform within a role. By having your industry experience verified with a nationally recognised qualification, you can effectively demonstrate that you meet the standards and expectations of an organisation. Managers are reassured by industry experience, so your chances for career advancement and promotion will greatly improve.

Training Packages are nationally endorsed and integrated sets of Competency Standards, Assessment Guidelines and AQF Qualifications for a specific industry, industry sector or enterprise. A training package specifies the skills and knowledge required to perform effectively in the workplace.

Competency verifies that an applicant has developed a level of skill, knowledge and understanding to meet benchmark standards in the industry. This would mean that they are able to adequately and successfully perform daily duties and meet the specific responsibilities of a role in the work environment.These benchmarks are defined in the Units of Competency for each nationally recognised qualification.

This is the recognition of any current Australian qualification that you have completed. Qualifications that have been attained through previous studies provide important evidence that may support your application. When qualifications are issued by an RTO, they will include an Academic Transcript providing a full listing of all Units of Competency that were successfully completed. Assessors will review the units and wherever possible, “credit transfers” will be applied. If you have previously completed units that are included in the qualification you are seeking through RPL, you will not need to complete these and you will be immediately deemed competent. This ensures that you only have to provide evidence for the remaining units of the qualification.

Sufficient evidence relates to the quality and quantity of evidence that is submitted. Rather than focusing on quantity, assessment decisions for RPL will be based on the quality of evidence that can be used to determine that an applicant has adequately achieved the required level of competency. RPL requires collection of appropriate evidence to ensure that all aspects of competency have been satisfied and that it is demonstrated repeatedly over an extended time period. Supplementary sources of evidence may be necessary.

The training package for each qualification will provide specific evidence requirements for each Unit of Competency and advice on the sufficiency of evidence to be provided. Although there are examples where specific evidence requirements are noted, generally there are no rules for the quantity.

Generally, we try to use “clustering” of evidence to determine competency of RPL applicants.

Clustering refers to competencies that have a unique piece of evidence. For instance, applicants can submit documents such as a detailed reports, operation manuals or operating systems that cover the specific requirements for a number of units within the Training Package. By providing a comprehensive and detailed document that covers a number of units, the amount of documented evidence required to compile the RPL application is reduced. If there are any noticeable gaps in the evidence that has been provided, these can be filled by the submission of specific documents to cover those units.

Clustering is also used when conducting “competency conversations” with RPL applicants as it shows a clear understanding of knowledge across a range of units. This is used to help build a more complete understanding of the level of competency.

This kit contains documents and checklists that are based on the Units of Competency contained in your desired qualification’s training package. This will allow you to check your current skills, knowledge and experience against the requirements. This is very beneficial for career self-reflection and allows you to carefully consider and determine your key skills and areas of expertise. These checklists can be completed on your own or with assistance from your managers and industry colleagues.

Assessors will provide you with any support and guidance required to complete the self-assessment.

Once you send your self-assessment and evidence back to Elisse, this will be reviewed and a full RPL Assessment will be undertaken. You will be advised if any “gaps” are identified and the assessor will discuss the types of supporting evidence that are still required to adequately verify your competency.


How long does the RPL Assessment process take?

The length of time is takes to complete an RPL assessment is dependent on the time it takes you to successfully compile and submit your evidence. Once all evidence has been submitted and the RPL Assessment has been completed, the application will be lodged with the RTO for processing. The time period for having the qualification issued by the RTO is generally 2 – 4 weeks.

You are given 3 months to complete the RPL process. This is generally enough time to complete the career self-assessment and compile sufficient evidence for each unit of competency. Requests for extensions will be considered on an individual case basis.

Elisse Education will help you collate the evidence required to effectively demonstrate your competency in each unit of the qualification. This process, along with assessment of the application involves:

  • You, as the responsible provider of the evidence and RPL candidate
  • RPL Advisor
  • RPL Assessor
  • RTOs
  • Past and present Employers
  • Referees

If you have completed prior education and have received qualifications that are recognised in Australia, you could be eligible for Direct Credit Transfer. Many training packages include the option of using Units of Competency from other qualifications to complete RPL. If you don’t have any prior qualifications, you will be assessed on your industry skills, knowledge and experience that directly relate to the qualification you are seeking.

Many industry skills are universal and interchangeable; if the evidence can be verified as legitimate and valid, it can be used as evidence for RPL. Some qualifications contain compliance and legislative requirements that are unique to Australia, hence you will need to prove that you have relevant experience in these fields to be eligible for RPL. Evidence must be in English or translated, and have a Statutory Declaration that has been sighted and signed by a Justice of the Peace.

The Direct Credit Transfer process cannot be completed unless you you’re your overseas qualification/s verified by Australian Education International (AEI). This is the Australian Government organisation that assesses higher education, post-secondary, technical and vocational overseas qualifications. The Assessor can take your overseas qualifications into consideration if they are not assessed by AEI, but you will need to provide a copy of the Academic Transcript with the subjects that were covered during your studies.

You may need to contact the educational institution where you completed the overseas qualification to obtain this information. When reviewing your evidence, the assessor must be able to verify the subject material covered in the overseas qualification to evaluate its relevance and validity.

Evidence must be in English or translated, and have a Statutory Declaration that has been sighted and signed by a Justice of the Peace.

Volunteering, work experience and internships can all be used if the experience you have gained relates to any of the units contained in the qualification. Even hobby-related activities may be used as evidence if you can provide relevant samples.

If you work for a family business you can ask a family member to provide a reference, however this must include a Statutory Declaration that is sighted and signed by a Justice of the Peace. Where possible, you should attempt to obtain additional references and testimonials from industry colleagues so that you are able to avoid any “conflict of interest” situations.

Elisse Edication are aware that RPL applicants may experience issues with supplying documentation is subject to intellectual property or confidentiality constraints with their current and previous employers.It is a requirement for assessors to sight specific work examples to determine competency, however assessors can take notes of the information to be presented to the RTO, rather than the entire document. Generally, cover pages or content pages will be required to determine applicant authorship. Assessors then make detailed notes on how the document conforms to the Units of Competency for the qualification.

Additionally, all confidential references can be removed or blacked out. This includes:

  • personal names
  • financial figures and
  • confidential references, etc.

As part of our terms and conditions for RPL, applicants complete a declaration form which states that all information and documentation supplied as evidence is kept strictly confidential. It is only used for the purposes of completing the RPL assessment and for the RTO to review evidence and issue the qualification.

We can also sign “Non-Disclosure Agreements” if required, to assure your employer that we take Intellectual Property matters very seriously and would not share confidential data.

The preferred method for sending RPL evidence is in electronic format via email, e.g. word/pdf documents, PowerPoints, etc. We have secure portals so that personal documentation, such as ID and private documents, can be sent via encrypted online file-sharing and uploading systems. This ensures privacy, confidentiality and integrity of submitted information.

Hard copy documentation may be sent, however we prefer soft copies as we have an appreciation for the environment and do all we can to reduce our carbon footprint in our business practices.

When Applicants are unable to provide enough supporting evidence to verify competency in all units of their qualification, they may need to complete some form of “Gap Training”.

This is generally not required, however it may be requested. If an Assessor has any doubts about the validity or authenticity of documentation or evidence submitted, a Statutory Declaration sighted and signed by a Justice of the Peace will need to be included with the RPL Application.

RPL doesn’t require any class-based study to obtain a nationally recognised
qualification. Instead, it is a verification of the knowledge, skills and experience that you have developed in the workplace throughout your career. You will still be issued a qualification, but in a timelier and more convenient timeframe than completing a course. You will moreover save a substantial amount on course fees as RPL is a cheaper option.Evidence for RPL can be submitted in electronic format, so there is no need to travel or attend a college.

By using RPL to obtain a qualification, you will not be required to take time off work to attend courses, study subjects that you already understand, or travel to attend class. Instead, you will complete your qualification in your own time and at your own pace.

Undergoing RPL with Elisse Education is generally a lot cheaper than studying a full course due to the streamlining of assessment processes and focus on existing experience. We do not have to employ trainers to conduct class or work-based study as you would have already gained these skills in the workplace. We are simply conducting a review of the evidence that you submit to check if it meets the competency requirements of your qualification.

There is also no time wasted going over subjects you already understand. We simply document this and carry out competency conversations along the way to help you build a portfolio of evidence that will be presented to the RTO for review on your behalf.

You will be required to provide personal information that can be used for communication and correspondence during the RPL process. This includes your name, address, contact details and other specific information used to determine that you are the actual person who is completing the qualification.This information is essential as a requirement for meeting the Standards for NVR Registered Training Organisations 2012.

To determine your identity, you will be required to supply 100 points of ID which can be sent to us via our secure online file-sharing system. This ID will also be provided to the RTO and kept securely in their records database. No personal information will ever be supplied to a third party without your prior consent.

Elisse Eduction are committed to maintaining and safeguarding the confidentiality and privacy of RPL applicants’ information in accordance with the Australian Government Office of the Australian Information Commissioner requirements and in conformance with the Privacy Act 1988. Elisse Education have documented procedures that are implemented into our daily operations to ensure integrity and privacy of all personal information submitted as part of the RPL process.

Applicants will be required to complete Enrolment and Declaration Forms for both Elisse Education and the RTO that will issue your nationally recognised qualification. These forms gather personal information on the applicant that is used for communication and correspondence. Please be assured that this is a standard and compulsory requirement for VET Enrolments in Australia to ensure compliance with the AQTF Essential Conditions and Standards for Initial & Continuing Registration for all RTOs operating in Australia.

Your completed RPL application will be sent to the RTO for review and final assessment. This is essential as they issue the qualification, and the information and evidence will be stored securely by the RTO. We also send the application details with your personal information and a copy of the RTO enrolment. This is essential for RTO Compliance.

Your personal information is sent to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) along with information on your completed qualification. It is added to the Australian Vocational Education and Training Management Information Statistical Standard (AVETMISS).

Once you have completed a nationally recognised qualification, you may wish to continue your career path. This may include obtaining a Diploma or Advanced Diploma, a postgraduate qualification or using your extensive managerial or industry experience to fast track university degrees.