The Queensland Government Certificate 3 Guarantee allows Queenslanders who are eligible to access subsidised training to reduce the cost of the certificate III course.† The purpose of the subsidy is to give a greater number of Australians access to this service to improve their employment opportunities. The scheme includes up to and including their first post-school certificate level III qualification in training areas that are deemed a priority.
This is a perfect opportunity for people looking to up-skill and gain a higher qualification in the mining and resource sector. Being a demanding, physical working environment, there are numerous courses you can do at a greatly reduced investment on your behalf.
There are of course many questions to be answered regarding the Certificate 3 Guarantee. For you convenience, we have included a selection of typical questions and answers to help you decide whether the Certificate 3 Guarantee is something you would like to take advantage of.
Certificate 3 FAQ
Am I eligible for the Certificate 3 Guarantee?
The Certificate 3 Guarantee is for students who commence a Certificate III Qualification on or after 1 July 2013.
To be eligible for the Certificate 3 Guarantee, a student must:
- not hold or be currently undertaking a certificate III or higher level qualification. This does not include certificate III qualifications completed while at secondary school
- be 15 years of age or older
- have finished secondary school or left school
- be an Australian or New Zealand citizen permanently residing in Queensland.
Which qualifications are high priority?
You can access the current list of approved high priority qualifications by visiting†http://www.training.qld.gov.au/information/investing-in-skills/certificate3/students.html
This list will continue to be updated throughout 2013/14 and the list of priority qualifications will continue to expand.† Further information relating to priority qualifications funded for apprentices and trainees under the User Choice program is available from the†http://qtis.training.qld.gov.au/
Does the Queensland Government already provide funding for certificate III qualifications?
Yes – through TAFE Queensland institutes.† Students already enrolled in subsidised certificate III qualifications delivered by TAFE will be able to complete their training under their existing arrangements.
Starting from 1 July 2013, new course enrolments in certificate III qualifications will be subsidised under the Certificate 3 Guarantee.† For some of these qualifications, students will be able to select their preferred training provider from a number of pre-approved training providers.
In addition, the Queensland Government will continue to provide funding for certificate III qualifications undertaken as part of an employment-based apprenticeship or traineeship through a different program called User Choice.
How is the Certificate 3 Guarantee different to the funding you can access now?
The Certificate 3 Guarantee is different because it will direct government subsidies to training in areas that need more skilled workers.† For those areas where skilled workers are needed, the Government will contribute more to the cost of training.
The Certificate 3 Guarantee is also different because it will require students to complete the full certificate III qualification (rather than just a number of competencies).† It will also enable greater access to training by allowing more training providers to deliver government subsidised training. This means that for some certificate III qualifications, students will have the choice to select their preferred training provider.
Can students already completing a certificate III qualification access the Certificate 3 Guarantee?
No – to be eligible to receive the Certificate 3 Guarantee as at 1 July 2013 you must not already hold, or not be currently studying, a certificate III or higher level qualification. This includes any equivalent certificate III or higher level training completed at university or through an apprenticeship or traineeship. It does not matter if you paid for this training or it was subsidised by the Government.
However certificate III qualifications completed while at school are not counted and you will still be eligible for the Certificate 3 Guarantee.
Does the Certificate 3 Guarantee cover all the costs of the training?
The size of the government subsidy available under the Certificate III Guarantee will vary depending on the level of demand for skilled workers in a particular industry (that is, the type of qualification) and the needs of the individual student.
The Queensland Government will contribute more to the cost of training for qualifications that meet industry skilling needs and are therefore more likely to lead to jobs for graduates.† The Government will also pay a higher subsidy for students who hold a Health Care or Pensioner Concession Card, and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.
The subsidy or funding is paid by the department directly to the training provider as training is delivered to the student. It is expected that training providers will charge students a fee to help cover training costs, as explained below.
If I receive the Certificate 3 Guarantee, what fees will I have to pay?
While it is expected that training providers will require students to make a contribution to the cost of the training through a Student Contribution Fee, it is up to each individual training provider how much they charge. The Student Contribution Fee must include all essential training costs to study the qualification.
All training providers must advertise their fees upfront.† This will allow you to compare the fees charged by different training providers delivering your chosen qualification, before selecting a training provider.
Does everyone receive the same level of subsidy under the Certificate 3 Guarantee?
No – students (or their partner or guardians) who hold a Health Care or Pensioner Concession Card and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students will receive a higher level of subsidy for their certificate III qualification. This should enable training providers to reduce fee costs for these participants.
Can I access a ‘training entitlement’ for apprenticeship and traineeship training?
The Government currently provides subsidised training for employment-based apprenticeship and traineeship training under a different program called User Choice. For more information on User Choice visit the apprenticeships info website.
Can I still receive the Certificate 3 Guarantee if I undertake a certificate III qualification through recognition of prior learning (RPL)?
Yes – the Certificate 3 Guarantee will apply to certificate III qualifications completed through recognition of prior learning (RPL). Find out more information about RPL.
Can I get additional training to prepare me to study a Certificate 3 Guarantee qualification?
Yes – when you enrol in a subsidised qualification under the Certificate 3 Guarantee, your training provider will assess you to identify if you need extra training support.† If you do, you will be able to access help with reading, writing and maths (called Foundation Skills) or related certificate I and/or certificate II courses which lead to the certificate III qualification. The cost of this extra training will be subsidised under the Certificate 3 Guarantee Program.
For some certificate III qualifications, the Certificate 3 Guarantee will also cover lower-level qualifications when they are a mandated prerequisite for the certificate III qualification. This means when it is a requirement of the certificate III qualification that the student complete the lower level qualification first in order to be eligible to enrol in the certificate III.
What happens if I don’t finish a Certificate 3 Guarantee qualification?
Under the Certificate 3 Guarantee, you are entitled to access government subsidised training for one completed certificate III qualification.†If you don’t complete the qualification, you are still eligible to access funding for another certificate III qualification. However you may be limited in how many times you can move from one unfinished qualification to another as government funding is limited. For this reason, it’s important that you take the time to consider your training options and all fee costs, before enrolling with a training provider and commencing training.
Do I have to pay back any money if I do not finish a Certificate 3 Guarantee course?
No – you will not be required to pay back any of the government subsidy paid to the training provider. But it is very important that you clarify with each training provider the terms and conditions of their refund policy should you decide to discontinue training.
Information for Students about Training Providers
Note: Training providers approved by the department to deliver training and assessment services for the Certificate 3 Guarantee are called Pre-qualified Suppliers.
Will my training provider help me find a job when I finish my Certificate 3 Guarantee qualification?
The aim of the Certificate 3 Guarantee is for students to achieve a full qualification that will help them get a job or improve their career. For this reason, the department requires training providers under the Certificate 3 Guarantee to work closely with local industry, community and employment agencies to identify the skills and training needed by employers. But it is not a requirement under the Program that the training provider assist you to find a job or place you in a job. Therefore it’s important to discuss your employment goals with the training provider prior to enrolling to understand what assistance, if any, they may be able to offer you to find employment.
What happens if my training provider stops offering a Certificate 3 Guarantee qualification I am enrolled in?
Under the training provider’s contract with the Department, if the training provider stops delivering your course, it is obligated to assist you to move to another pre-approved training provider so you can complete your training.
If I move to another training provider under the Certificate 3 Guarantee, will I continue to pay the same fees for a qualification?
Not necessarily as training providers can charge different amounts for the student contribution fee or no fee.† However all training providers must clearly advertise their fees upfront to enable you to compare fees before choosing to continue your training with another training provider.
If I continue my qualification with another training provider under the Certificate 3 Guarantee†- will I get recognition for the training I have already completed?
Yes – your first training provider must supply you with a Statement of Attainment which will show any units of competency you have completed for the course or qualification. You must present the Statement of Attainment to your new training provider so that your previous completed units of competency can be recognised.
Will I be reimbursed for the costs of training I have incurred to date if I do not want to continue training with another training provider?
This will depend on each training provider’s refund policy.†This is why it is very important that you clearly understand the terms and conditions in the training provider’s refund policy and clarify any concerns you may have, prior to finalising your enrolment and commencing training.
Who can I contact for more information?
For more information on the Certificate 3 Guarantee and other training programs funded by the Government – visit the Department’s Training website at www.training.qld.gov.au.
You can contact the Training Queensland Customer Centre (TQCC) on telephone 1300 369 935 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other types of government subsidised training
There are other training programs being offered by the Government and managed by the Department which may be more suitable for some individuals.† These programs are listed below and further information will be made available on the Department’s Training website as initiatives are developed.
- The Community Learning Program (CLP) will deliver accredited training and support needed by disadvantaged learners in a community-based setting.
- Under Strategic Initiatives, the Government will invest in a range of programs that meet training gaps or support disadvantaged participants to gain employment skills, such as training programs for Indigenous people living in Cape York communities and people with a disability. These programs may engage specialist community-based training organisations to deliver tailored training programs to support students.
- The Queensland Government will provide subsidies for individuals seeking higher-level qualifications in order to change careers or enhance their current career options.† This program will be called Higher Level Training Subsidy and is planned to be introduced in 2014. For now, students can still go to their local TAFE Institute to enquire about accessing subsidised higher level qualifications.
- The Government will also partner with industry and jointly fund training programs which respond to current and emerging industry skilling needs.† This investment will occur via the Industry Partnerships Program.†Training may include:
- certificate IV qualifications that are identified as a high skilling priority
- certificate III qualifications (possibly allowing individuals to access a second subsidised training place in critical skill shortage areas), and
- skill sets (in critical skill shortage areas).
What is VET FEE Help and how can students access it?
- VET FEE-HELP is a student loan program to assist eligible students enrolled in higher-level courses to pay their student contribution fees, so that the cost of the course does not prevent any person from being able to enrol in training.
- This means that even though there may be an increase in the student contribution fee for some higher-level qualifications, students will be able to borrow money to pay the fee and then pay back the loan once they graduate and earn a certain level of income.
- When contacting a training provider, prospective students should ask the training provider about whether they offer VET FEE-HELP and for what qualifications.