Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I become an Australian Apprentice?

What is a registered training organisation? 

What is an Apprenticeship Network Provider?

How do I find an Apprenticeship Network Provider?

Are Australian Apprenticeships available for existing employees?

How much time will I spend in training as an Australian Apprentice?

What is User Choice?

What incentives are available for employers, Australian Apprentices and registered training organisations (RTOs)? 

Why should I hire an Australian Apprentice?

How do I find an Australian Apprentice? 

What are my responsibilities as a group training organisation?

What are my obligations as a registered training organisation? 

What Qualifications are offered under Australian Apprenticeships?

How do I choose a registered training organisations?

What is AVETMISS? 

How do I become a registered training organisation?

What is an ACTFA? What is the ACT Qualifications Register?

How do I become an Australian Apprentice?

To become an Australian Apprentice you must initially seek out a prospective Australian Apprentice employer. This may be done through Job Services Australia, job websites on the internet, advertisements in the newspaper or other job services sources. Once employment is gained, an Apprenticeship Network Provider must be chosen by your employer to lodge a National Training Contract (training contract) for approval. The employer chooses a registered training organisation (RTO) to provide the training. Together the RTO, employer and you as the student develop a training plan, which outlines the program for training and on-the-job skills development for achievement of the Australian Apprenticeship qualification. Please visit the Becoming an Apprentice or Trainee webpage  for more information about Australian Apprenticeships.

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What is a registered training organisation?

A registered training organisation (RTO) is a training provider which is registered to provide specific vocational education and training and/or assessment services. RTOs may include TAFE institutes, private providers, community providers, schools, higher education institutions, industry organisations and enterprises and some government departments.

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What is an Apprenticeship Network Provider?

Apprenticeship Network Providers (ANPs) are contracted by the Australian Government to provide free support services to Australian Apprentices and employers to assist them with the sign-up and administration of Australian Apprenticeships. ANPs operate from over 300 sites Australia-wide. All Australian Apprenticeships must be organised through an Apprenticeship Network Provider.

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How do I find an Apprenticeship Network Provider?

To commence an Australian Apprenticeship a National Training Contract must be completed through an Apprenticeship Network Provider (ANP) operating in your region. The Australian Apprenticeships Referral Line 13 38 73 assists callers to locate an ANP and Tools for Your Trade support. Information is also available on the Australian Apprenticeships External Link website

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Are Australian Apprenticeships available for existing employees?

Yes, employees who have been employed for three months full-time or 12 months part-time are considered existing workers under Australian Apprenticeships. In the ACT, funding for Australian Apprenticeships is available for some existing employees in industry areas where there are identified skills shortages. The current year's ACT Qualifications Register includes qualifications that are funded for existing employees.

Where funding for training is not available, eligible employers may still receive Australian Government incentives to assist in the cost of training. More information regarding potential incentives is available through your Apprenticeship Network Provider.

Existing employees must agree to meet the same criteria as other Australian Apprentices in the ACT, as outlined in the Roles and Responsibilities section of the Training Contract.

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How much time will I spend in training as an Australian Apprentice?

In the ACT, you will spend a minimum of three hours per week in structured training. This may include:

  • attendance at a training institution
  • in the workplace
  • completing project work both on and off the job
  • self-paced and on-line learning.

Training arrangements relevant to your particular situation will be agreed between your employer and your registered training organisation (RTO) at the commencement of your training contract.

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What is User Choice?

User Choice is a national funding policy for Australian Apprenticeships promoting choice in training services provided to employers and Australian Apprentices.

A key feature of Australian Apprenticeships is more flexibility for the users (employers and Australian Apprentices) of the training system. User Choice is a model for achieving client responsive training which means that businesses and Australian Apprentices can select from any approved registered training organisation (RTO) and negotiate how, where and when the training and assessment is to occur. To find RTOs approved to deliver training in the ACT please visit the ACT Qualifications Register.

The ACT Education and Training Directorate administers payments to RTOs as a contribution towards the cost of training. The ACT Qualifications Register lists available funding amounts for RTOs accessing User Choice funding to deliver Australian Apprenticeships qualifications in the ACT.

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What incentives are available for employers, Australian Apprentices and registered training organisations (RTOs)?

Australian Government

Information on incentives for employers and Australian Apprentices is available on the Australian Apprenticeships website or from your selected Apprenticeship Network Provider.

ACT Government

Under the Payroll Tax Act 1987, a Payroll Tax exemption is the only incentive for apprentices  offered in the ACT for wages paid or payable. Details on all Payroll Tax exemptions can be found on the ACT Revenue Office External Link

Additional funding to support training is available through the Skills Canberra branch of the ACT Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate for Australian Apprentices who may have learning difficulties. It is also available to support students who may require additional support in areas such as literacy and numeracy, sign language interpreter services, or mentoring.

RTOs can apply in writing to Skills Canberra for funding for such services and applications will be considered on the individual merits of each case.  Information is available in the ACT Standards Compliance Guide for Australian Apprenticeships External Link

Interstate Training Assistance

Some Travel and Accommodation assistance is available to apprentices who travel interstate for training. Please note interstate training only applies when there is no RTO delivering the relevant training in the ACT. For further information, visit the Becoming an Apprentice or Trainee webpage or contact Skills Canberra on (02) 6205 8555 or email skills@act.gov.au.

Building and Construction Industry Training Fund

The ACT Building and Construction Industry Training Fund Authority collect a training levy on building and construction work undertaken in the ACT.  Monies collected are used to:

  • provide funding for the up-skilling and cross-skilling of workers in the building and construction industry
  • train entry level Australian Apprentices in the building and construction industry. 

To find out more about available incentives in relevant building and construction trades contact the ACT Building and Construction Industry Training Fund Authority on (02) 6262 5630.

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Why should I hire an Australian Apprentice?

As an employer you make all the hiring decisions regarding Australian Apprenticeships. Group training organisations can organise for you to share an Australian Apprentice with another employer if you don't have enough work for an ongoing or full-time position. You can also engage an Australian Apprentice part-time while he or she is still at school through an Australian School-based Apprenticeship.

Benefits of hiring an Australian Apprentice:

  • people trained to your business requirements
  • offered in a range of industries
  • available at all certificate levels up to advanced diploma
  • flexible choice of registered training organisations (RTOs) who can provide off-the-job training to your Australian Apprentice, with negotiations around timing, location and nature of the training to suit your business needs
  • government funding may be available to subsidise the cost of training
  • a range of financial incentives for eligible employers
  • nationally recognised qualifications

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How do I find an Australian Apprentice?

There are a number of ways to find an Australian Apprentice:

You can also:

  • contact a local group training provider
  • engage an Australian School-based Apprentice
  • employers looking specifically for Indigenous employees can advertise a job on the Indigenous Employment Service website.

If you are interested in employing an Australian Apprentice, you should read the National Code of Good Practice for Australian Apprenticeships External Link This document outlines what is involved in entering into a training contract.

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What are my responsibilities as a group training organisation?

As the legal employer you are responsible for:

  • selecting the Australian Apprentice carefully to ensure that they are suitable for placement with a host employer
  • monitor award conditions and pay rates
  • take responsibility for all paperwork connected with wages, allowances, superannuation, workers' compensation, sick/holiday pay and other employee entitlements
  • act as a consultant and trouble-shooter throughout the period of employment and training
  • manage the additional care and support necessary to achieve the successful completion of the apprenticeship or traineeship.

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What are my obligations as a registered training organisation?

All registered training organisations (RTOs) are required to:

  • help employers choose the nationally recognised qualification which meets the student and employer needs
  • help employers choose how the training will be delivered
  • customise the training to the requirements of the business
  • conduct a skills assessment of each trainee/apprentice to identify competencies already held and those yet to be attained
  • develop a training plan that accurately reflects the planned training delivery
  • deliver, or arrange delivery of, the structured training, that may occur at the RTO's premises, the workplace, or a combination of both
  • provide workplace support to the employer and Australian Apprentice, including assisting with scheduling structured training and planning the assessment process
  • negotiate assessment arrangements with the employer and Australian Apprentice and validate final assessment
  • issue the certificate or statement of attainment that complies with the Australian Qualifications Framework guidelines.
  • For further information on the minimum service requirements for RTOs, please review the ACT Standards for Delivery of Training.                                  

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What qualifications are offered under Australian Apprenticeships?

Australian Apprenticeships are available in a variety of certificate levels in more than 500 occupations across Australia, in traditional trades, as well as a diverse range of careers in most sectors of business and industry, including:

  • Agriculture, horticulture and related industries
  • Automotive
  • Building and Construction
  • Business services
  • Finance services
  • Food
  • Hairdressing
  • Community services and health
  • Information technology
  • Light manufacturing
  • Local government
  • Metals and Engineering
  • Printing
  • Process manufacturing
  • Property services
  • Public services
  • Retail
  • Seafood
  • Sport and recreation
  • Telecommunications
  • Tourism
  • Transport and distribution
  • Utilities and energy

Please visit the ACT Qualifications Register to search a list of registered qualifications and registered training organisations approved to deliver Australian Apprenticeships training. The Australian Apprenticeships Pathways website also provides information and resources for Australian Apprenticeships.

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How do I choose a registered training organisation?

An employer, together with their Australian Apprentice, chooses the registered training organisation (RTO) to deliver the training. In a small number of qualifications there is no RTO delivering that particular training in the ACT, and the Australian Apprentice must travel interstate for their off job training (known as 'Interstate Training').

For a list of RTOs delivering Australian Apprenticeships qualifications in the ACT, visit the ACT Qualifications Register and click on the chosen qualification to reveal the choice of RTOs available. Apprenticeship Network Providers can provide employers with a list of RTOs approved to deliver qualifications.

Before choosing a RTO, employers should be clear about the training needs of their business. They may find it useful to discuss this with one or more RTOs before final selection.

After selecting a RTO, the employer together with the Australian Apprentice must negotiate with the RTO the delivery of structured training and assessment and the development of a training plan. For example, they can negotiate:

  • selection and sequencing of units of competency in the qualification
  • timing, location and mode of delivery
  • who will be the trainer/facilitator(s)
  • who conducts the assessment
  • how the training is to be evaluated.

The RTO's responsibilities are stated in the VET Quality Framework (VQF) for RTOs.  RTOs are also bound by the relevant state or territory government's requirements for delivering Australian Apprenticeships in the state/territory where the Australian Apprentice works.

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What is AVETMISS?

The Australian Vocational Education Training Management Information Statistical Standard (AVETMISS) for VET Providers is a national data standard that ensures the consistent and accurate capture of VET information about students, their courses, units of activity, and qualifications completed. It provides the mechanism for national reporting of the VET system.

Broadly speaking, it provides data and answers to the following questions about students in the VET system:

  • who they are? Basic demographics like age, sex, indigenous and disability information, geographic location
  • where they study? Type of provider (e.g. government or private), location of training delivery
  • what they study/studied? Enrolments in units of competency, as part of a qualification, the result obtained for unit (outcome), how it was studied (e.g. classroom, workplace or online) and how it was funded.

RTOs must have a student records management system in place that has the capacity to provide the registering body with AVETMISS compliant data.

Click here to access the AVETMISS Requirements for ACT RTOs

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How do I become a registered training organisation?

The Australia Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) is the national regulator responsible for the registration of RTOs and accreditation of their courses. Training organisations that are wanting to become RTOs must be registered with ASQA if they are training within ASQAs jurisdiction, including the ACT. For more information on becoming a RTO please refer to the ASQA website.

If you are unable to find the answer to your question here, please contact the ACT Education and Training Directorate on (02) 6205 8555 or email skills@act.gov.au.

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What is an ACTFA?

From 1 January 2013, ACTFA will be the contractual arrangement between the Directorate and RTOs to deliver programs to address the major objectives of the ACT vocational education and training (VET) system. Programs under the ACTFA may target specific participant groups, such as equity groups or specific skills and qualifications. Specific programs are identified through schedules for the purpose of the ACTFA.

RTOs must hold an approved ACTFA prior to delivering training under any of the following programs in the ACT:

  • Australian Apprenticeships (User Choice)
  • Productivity Places Program (PPP)
  • Priorities Support Program (PSP)

Once a RTO holds an ACTFA it is eligible to apply for funded programs, however, holding an ACTFA does not guarantee funding, as each schedule maintains a competitive allocation of funds process. There are specific requirements for each program. Please visit the VET Admin webpage to access the requirements for each program. Training programs funded under ACTFA must be from national training packages or nationally accredited courses, in whole or partial qualifications or in clusters of competencies (skills sets).
For more detailed information, visit the ACFTA page

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What is the ACT Qualifications Register?

The ACT Qualifications Register contains information provided by registered training organisations (RTOs), the Federal Government, and Skills Canberra.  The register provides a list of training organisations approved to deliver training in the ACT.  Information can be accessed using course name or code and RTO name or code.