28 September 2023 Update – ASQA Grants Extended Transition Period for FWP20121 and FWP30121 Qualifications
The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) extended the transition period for two crucial qualifications: FWP20121 Certificate II in Forest Operations and FWP30121 Certificate III in Forest Operations. This decision comes as ASQA exercises its authority to approve transition periods longer than initially stipulated in the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015.
The transition period extension aligns with ASQA’s commitment to ensuring that learners are not disadvantaged during transitioning from old qualifications to new ones. ASQA’s approach is grounded in the “Guidance for Providers – Learner Transition,” which outlines the criteria for considering applications for an extended transition period.
Effective 23 January 2024, the transition period for training, assessment, and certification issuance for FWP20121 and FWP30121 qualifications will now extend to 31 January 2025. The extension applies to both new enrolments and existing students. All students pursuing these qualifications must successfully complete them or be transferred to equivalent replacement qualifications before the new transition ends.
It’s important to note that these qualifications will remain on the scope of registration for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) until the extended transition period concludes. This means that RTOs can continue offering and delivering training and assessment for FWP20121 and FWP30121 certificates during this time.
Before making this decision, ASQA consulted with key authorities, including the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority and the Training Accreditation Council of Western Australia. This collaborative approach ensures that the interests and needs of learners across different states are considered.
This extended transition period underscores ASQA’s commitment to providing flexibility and support to both learners and training providers. It aims to facilitate a smooth transition to updated qualifications while minimising disruptions and ensuring essential skills are available in the forest operations sector.
03 March 2023 FWP Training Package Update
Update on Fell Trees Manually (Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced)
The Forest Management and Harvesting Industry Reference Committee (IRC) recently advised on delivering the superseded Fell Trees Manually units, specifically the Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced levels. RTOs wishing to offer these updated units are urged to consult the Companion Volume Implementation Guide (CVIG), which contains important guidance on page 50.
The IRC has emphasised the importance of safety in the forestry industry and has received feedback from participants that the existing units do not provide enough assessment activities for individuals to demonstrate competency. Therefore, until a full review can be conducted in 2023, the IRC recommends that RTOs continue to use the following units for Fell Trees Manually:
- FWPCOT2253 (Basic)
- FWPFGM3216 (Intermediate)
- FWPFGM3217 (Advanced)
The updated Fell Trees Manually units have been improved with various performance criteria, including reducing the number of trees needed to demonstrate competence due to the practical limitations of accessing multiple trees per student in non-forestry settings. However, RTOs must ensure that students receive sufficient training before the assessment to possess the necessary skills and knowledge regarding safety.
It is crucial to note that tree felling is a hazardous activity, and students must be fully trained and skilled before being assessed as competent by felling live trees. The Performance Evidence requirements have been amended for each level of the unit to demonstrate both cutting and felling techniques, with specific numbers of trees to be felled reduced to a minimum. This will support better training outcomes while addressing the issue of tree access in non-forestry settings.
For Fell Trees Manually (Basic), the learner must demonstrate competence in performing standard cutting techniques for felling a tree with basic characteristics four times and felling two trees using the same cutting techniques.
For Fell Trees Manually (Intermediate), the learner must demonstrate competence in performing two cutting techniques, each on two occasions, for felling a tree with intermediate characteristics and felling two trees with intermediate characteristics using the same cutting techniques.
For Fell Trees Manually (Advanced), the learner must demonstrate competence in performing two different cutting techniques, each on two occasions, for felling a tree with advanced characteristics and felling of two trees with advanced characteristics using an appropriate cutting technique.
To support RTOs during this process, an additional 12-month extension to the teach-out period for these units has been sought from ASQA. With appropriate training, the updated Fell Trees Manually units can result in similar or even better learning outcomes while ensuring safety and addressing practical limitations.
22 February 2023 FWP Training Package Update
FWP40222 – Certificate IV in Timber and Wood Products Operations was updated from release 1 to release 2
The FWP – Forest and Wood Products training package version 8.1 is now live on training.gov.au. In this release, minor changes were made to FWP40222 – Certificate IV in Timber and Wood Products Operations, which was updated from release 1 to release 2. The FWP40222 release 2 reflects the revised titles of elective units.
For more detailed changes made on FWP version 8.1, visit training.gov.au.
30 January 2023 FWP Training Package Update
Extended Transition Period Approved for Forest and Wood Products Qualifications
The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) can grant transition periods beyond the standard outlined in Clauses 1.26 (a), (b), and (c) of the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015. This is only considered if there would be a significant disadvantage to a group of learners without the extension.
Recently, ASQA has approved a longer transition period for the following Forest and Wood Products (FWP) qualifications:
- FWP20116 Certificate II in Forest Growing and Management
- FWP20216 Certificate II in Harvesting and Haulage
- FWP30116 Certificate III in Forest Growing and Management
- FWP30216 Certificate III in Harvesting and Haulage
- FWP40116 Certificate IV in Forest Operations
- FWP50116 Diploma of Forest and Forest Products
This extension is only available for ASQA registered RTOs with delivery scope for continuing students. The extended training, assessment, and certification deadline for these qualifications will be January 31st, 2024.
The decision was supported by organisations such as the Food, Fibre and Timber Training Council, Forest Training Council, Forest Products Commission, and Skills Impact. These FWP qualifications will remain on the scope of registration for ASQA regulated RTOs until the end of the extended transition period, unless the RTO decides to remove it from their scope.