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How to Become an Aged Care Trainer

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Aged Care Trainers and Assessors

If you’re passionate about your work in caring for the elderly or the disabled, why not grow your career in the field by learning to train other people to do the same?

Personal care services are thriving in Australia thanks to our rapidly ageing population. It’s no surprise many people are seeking jobs in this industry because of its massive growth.

A position as a “hands-on” aged, disability or community care worker isn’t your only career option.

More than 40,000 new carers will be required in the next few years. Many trainers are required to help them gain skills, knowledge and formal qualifications in aged and disability care.

With the right training and experience, you can fill this role and advance your career by becoming an Aged Care Trainer and Assessor.

So how do you get started?

Step 1: Study Aged Care Courses and Gain Work Experience

Aged care courses allow you to gain work experience

Training and qualifications are essential in just about any career and aged care training is no exception.

For aged and personal care, this means you must first gain nationally recognised qualifications. Employers in the aged care sector are now required to have formally qualified staff in order for their aged care, disability care or home and community care services to comply with stricter accreditation standards.

This means it is strongly recommended you study and gain formal qualifications to make it as easy as possible to find work and develop practical experience as a personal care professional.

Qualifications

Some of the most popular courses to get started in the aged, disability and community care industries include:

  1. The Certificate III in Aged Care
  2. The Certificate III in Home & Community Care and
  3. The Certificate III in Disability

Duration

Aged care courses typically take only 1 year to finish. This includes at least 80 hours of vocational placement where you gain first hand work experience by volunteering with an eligible care service. Almost half of aged care workers achieve a Certificate III or IV qualification.

Gaining multiple qualifications

There is a significant overlap between units in these qualifications, so it is actually quite easy to gain two or more qualifications at the same time. For example, if you already have the Cert III Aged Care, you only need to study 1 more unit to gain the Cert III in Home & Community Care.

If studying multiple qualifications at once is not practical for you, don’t worry. Once you complete one qualification, you can normally use it to gain credit aka “Recognition of Prior Learning” (RPL) in either of the other two qualifications when you’re ready to study again.

Having multiple qualifications is also useful because you can only deliver training if you hold the exact competencies in the course (ie skills and knowledge) yourself. Earning  the exact qualification you wish to deliver is usually the simplest way to demonstrate you hold the competencies.

Ask your employer

It generally helps to hold at least one of these qualifications to start a career in aged care and gain the experience you need to work in training roles later on. If you’re currently working in a personal care facility or for a home care service, your employer may even encourage you to take on further training.

Ask your supervisor to know which course would be the best for you and your organisation and if they will provide you with assistance. They may be willing to pay for (or at least subsidise) your course, provide you time during work hours to study or offer other study assistance.

Step 2: Get Qualified as a Trainer and Use Your Experience

Cert IV TAE is the standard qualification among trainersA certificate in personal care helps you find work in the industry to develop practical, hands-on work experience, but it isn’t enough for you to become an aged care trainer.

Delivery of vocational courses like Certificate IIIs, IVs and Diplomas is regulated by Government authorities and trainers must comply with the requirements for Australia’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) industry.

ONLY qualified and current trainers with recent work experience in the industry can assess these qualifications and only a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) can issue the certification.

Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

The current minimum standard qualification for VET trainers in Australia is the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Higher level qualifications may also be used to qualify to work as a vocational trainer, but the Certificate IV is the most popular. It is relatively short and focuses on the exact skills and knowledge needed to start work as a trainer and assessor.

The Certificate IV in Training and Assessment typically takes less than 1 year to complete. You have the choice of studying it on your own pace online, by joining Face-to-Face workshops or through a combination of the two. You can even fast track the course and skip units through Recognition of Prior Learning if your work responsibilities involve training and you can provide evidence that matches the requirements of the course.

Once you have earned one or more aged care qualifications, developed extensive experience in aged care work and finally attained your Certificate IV in Training and Assessment qualification, you are able to start seeking work as an aged care trainer and assessor in the VET sector.

Step 3: Where to look for work

You can now pursue new career opportunities as vocational trainer!

Training roles are most often found in TAFEs and RTOs. You will discover that many organisations operate RTOs and require training staff. RTOs can include:

  • 1. Pure training organisations like Inspire Education that offer training direct to the public.
  • 2. High schools which deliver Certificate I, II and III training to their own students.
  • 3. Universities which run their own RTO or partner with a TAFE to offer more educational opportunities in their area.
  • 4. Businesses like aged care facilities so they can deliver courses and traineeships to their own staff.
  • 5. Non-profit organisations like the Red Cross who offer training to their own volunteers and the public.

There are also opportunities to work in non-VET trainer roles. Many large companies and businesses require in-house training for their own staff. This creates opportunities to work within these organisations, creating and delivering training programs to induct and upskill staff.

Making yourself attractive as a job candidate

Employers are normally looking for someone with the right qualifications and experience to do the job. You can make yourself more attractive as a candidate by developing more of both.

Qualifications

Remember, you can only deliver and assess qualifications that you hold yourself. To maximise your opportunities for work, it helps to hold multiple qualifications.

Certificate III in Disability and Certificate III in Home and Community Care qualifications naturally complement the Certificate III in Aged Care. Adding Certificate IV and Diploma qualifications in the personal care field to your skillset may also help you.

More advanced qualifications are not required to deliver training Certificate and Diploma level courses, but holding a relevant degree in a field such as nursing can show employers you are a true expert in your field of training.

Experience

You have experience as an aged care worker, but what about as a trainer?

Getting your foot in the door in your first training role can be tricky. Start developing training experience ASAP to make finding your first job as easy as possible.

While you’re still working in aged care as a personal care assistant, you can gain experience by developing and delivering training programs to staff within your organisation. No doubt your workplace needs training services on a regular basis – inducting new staff, helping existing staff learn new techniques and procedures, and even running courses for people in care to help them stay mentally sharp.

Volunteering is another way to earn training experience. Some non-profit organisations may appreciate your help training volunteers to provide personal care services. Community organisations in many regions offer free short courses to the public – why not offer to create and deliver short training programs in elderly care?

Salary of Aged Carers and Trainers

How much do aged care workers and trainers earn?

Full time aged care worker have a median salary of approiximately $898 per week, depending on where you are in Australia.

Salaries for vocational trainers and related jobs include:

  • 1. Vocational Teachers earn a median salary of $1538 a week.
  • 2. Training and Development professionals earn a median salary of $1350 per week

These figures are provided for reference only from www.joboutlook.gov.au. Your salary will depend on your experience, qualifications, geographical region, and the industry you work in.

Recap: Becoming an Aged Care Trainer

Aged care is a rapidly growing industry. Tens of thousands more carers are needed in the coming years.

To fill this demand, Australia needs qualified and experienced trainers who will teach people the skills and knowledge they need to serve as care providers.

If you want to become an Aged Care Trainer, start on your journey today:

1. Take up a formal qualification and use it to gain practical, on-the-job work experience in an aged care facility to be an expert in aged care.
2. Get formally qualified as a trainer and assessor with the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment so you can deliver nationally recognised and accredited training courses
3. Develop the training experience you need, and finally, find the training job you want.

Remember that your qualifications for both training and aged care, as well as your work experience need to be current.

Once you meet these requirements, you can now expand into a training career and begin helping new students begin their own careers in aged care.

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Comments

There’s 19 comments (add a comment)

  • kerri eberle says:

    I work in aged care have lots of experience I am 56 love my job but my body is telling me I cant be on the floor for much longer i don’t want to leave the industry

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Hi Kerri! Thanks for reading the article 🙂 A popular way to get into a different role while still staying in your industry is to become a qualified trainer. Having years of work experience is extremely valuable among trainers and it sounds like you already have that. You can speak with our Enrolment Coordinator if you want to discuss your possible career pathways with the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Just click here to enquire right now so we can send you an infopack and have our Enrolment Coordinator reach out to you.

  • sylvia says:

    Hi I am an aged care trainer and assessor . I have the current qualifications wondering if inspire are seeking any trainers I specialise in Dementia .

  • Anthea says:

    Great article Luke.
    I am passionate about what I do for my senior citizens and would love to impart my knowledge onto new Care Assistants. Becoming an Aged Care Trainer is exactly what I intend to do.
    Thank you.

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Thanks, Anthea! It’s great to hear that you want to share your passion with more people. Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

  • Jonelyn Mason says:

    Hi ,
    How do I go of qualifying in studying Aged care trainer?

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Hi Jonelyn! First take up the Certificate III in Aged Care (click on that link to get more details about it) and become a qualified Aged Care worker. This will allow you to pursue jobs in care facilities and gain valuable industry experience. Then, take up the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and become a qualified Trainer. Since aged care courses are nationally accredited, only people who hold the Cert IV in Training and Assessment are allowed to deliver training for them.

      Once you have both qualifications, you can apply in TAFEs, RTOs, universities, Aged Care Facilities and other organisations that employ aged care trainers.

      Does that give you an idea of where to start, Jonelyn? If you have any questions, just send us an enquiry by filling up the form on the Cert III Aged Care or Cert IV TAE page and our Enrolment Coordinator will reach out to you 🙂

  • Megan says:

    when doing inhouse training in a nursing home, as in learning on the job with a fellow worker who may or may not have a cert 3, does the person signing you off as competent have to be a certified trainer/assessor? Our new staff are just shoved on shift with anyone even if the person they are put with may have only worked there for a couple of months themselves. There is no continuity as everyone is training everyone and things are being missed.
    I just need to know this as the management currently sign off on the competencies yet they are never on the floor dealing with the residents and never see if a staff member is competent or not and the manager only holds a cert 3 and the Acting Manager who does most of the signing off as competent has no certificates in aged care let alone be a certified trainer/assessor. I am confused!!!

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Hi Megan! Yes, the person who assesses your competence should be a certified trainer and have an aged care qualification themselves. This way all trainees will be taught the essential skills and comply with national standards. Nursing homes can still train new staff members through their own in-house methods like what you’re describing, but it won’t be considered nationally accredited training. This means that new staff members may learn how to do specific tasks in your nursing home, but they won’t be fully qualified aged care workers. It may also be difficult to use that kind of training to get Recognition of Prior Learning later on if it isn’t properly documented.

      To be fully qualified, you’d need to take up a nationally accredited training course (like the Cert III in Aged Care). These can only be delivered by qualified trainers (those who hold the latest Cert IV TAE) and only TAFEs, RTOs and other similar training/education organisations can issue the formal certificate.

      If your nursing home doesn’t have a trainer with qualifications in both aged care and training and assessment, it might be a good idea to speak with your manager about supporting your professional development.

      I hope that helps you out, Megan.

  • Jessica says:

    Hi,

    I am currently studying a certificate III in Individual Support Ageing at TAFE. I would love to be an Aged Care Assessment Team assessor, but i am unsure as to how to go about achieving this? Do you know what courses i would need to study?
    i live in Sydney, NSW

    Cheers

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Hi Jessica! It’s great that you’re already thinking of a career as an aged care trainer. To start, you will need the TAE40110 Certificate IV Training and Assessment and complete the Cert III in Individual Support course you are currently studying. Once you gain enough industry experience in aged care facilities, you can start asking around RTOs and TAFEs for open training positions. Hope that helps you! If you have any questions about becoming a qualified trainer, feel free to enquire here and ask our Enrolment Coordinator.

      EDIT: The original answer above is specifically for certified Trainers and Assessors. ACAT assessors may have different qualification requirements such as in nursing or social work, depending on the organisation.

  • Glyn Crisp RN says:

    I am appalled that you are suggesting a person with Cert 3 and Cert IV could be employed as a trainer. It is little wonder that the personal carers we are seeing now in facilities are so poorly trained. By the way Jessica, who writes above, wants to be an ACAT assessor ( Aged Care Assessment Team) NOT a trainer. An ACAT assessor requires a degree in Social Work or Nursing. Your response to Megan is also incorrect you do not need to be a certified trainer to sign off on competencies for Cert 3. You need a Nursing Degree. We have students regularly and we do not have anyone who is a trainer, it is not required. You are providing people with very misleading and false information. You are all about enrolling people and giving them false hope. You should be ashamed of yourself. The entire training industry needs a shake up. Glyn Crisp RN

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Thank you for your comments, Glyn. Looking back at the previous question, you are right that one was asking about ACAT and that has different requirements from Trainers and Assessors at TAFEs and RTOs. Regarding trainers, the guide is based on ASQA’s Standards for RTOs which states that Trainers and Assessors of nationally accredited courses must have vocational competencies at least to the level being delivered and the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (or at least a diploma qualification in adult education). This can be through holding the competency they are delivering (in this case, holding the Certificate III themselves) or by demonstrating equivalence of competency. The second one may be what is relevant to your organisation since nursing degrees tend to have similar skills to aged care courses and graduates may become trainers as well with additional training. I hope that clears things up a bit from an RTO perspective. If you have any questions, just let me know.

    • Jayme-lee Redfern says:

      Hi Glyn how are you?
      You seem to be quite informed on this subject so wondered if i could ask, I am currently studying me E.N. I am aware that to become a trainer at E.N level I would need to do my bachelor and become an R.N. however, i was wondering if as an EN i am able to become a trainer for aged care certs?
      Thankyou

  • Jayme-lee Redfern says:

    Hi just wondering as an enrolled nurse can i become an aged care trainer? I do not specifically have an aged care certificate however do have a diploma of nursing and experience doing pca/pcw work. Im keen to do my training and assessment course and work towards becoming a trainer

    • Luke Imbong Luke Imbong says:

      Hi Jayme-lee! The general rule is that you must hold the qualification you want to deliver training for (plus the Cert IV in Training and Assessment) before you can become a qualified trainer. If you have evidence that you have enough industry and work experience that covers all of the competencies expected of aged care certificate holders, then you may be able to fulfill this requirement. You can also use your existing experience and other qualifications to fast track your aged care course through Recognition of Prior Learning so that you won’t have to take the entire course. I hope that helps! If you have any further questions, please feel free to ask us by enquiring here on the aged care course page: http://www.inspireeducation.net.au/courses/aged-care-disability-courses/certificate-iii-in-individual-support-ageing-course/

  • Trish says:

    I am a registered nurse with a Batchelor of Nursing and the old Cert 4 in workplace training and assessment would I need to undertake a Grad Diploma to work as a trainer ?

  • domoni apex says:

    I am here in Australia on holiday and going back next month but I am really interested in starting work as a aged care trainer . Though I have no experience I am willing to learn as I love helping the senior citizens . Please help me on how to go about with this ?

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