• TAAASS404B - Participate in assessment validation

Participate in assessment validation

This unit specifies the competence required to participate in an assessment validation process.


Validation is a process involving assessors working in collaboration to review, compare and evaluate their assessment process and their assessment outcomes in relation to the same unit/s of competency. This includes validating assessment methods/tools, the evidence that was collected using these assessment methods/tools and the interpretation of that evidence to make a judgement of competence.

Validation forms part of the quality systems of the training/ and/or assessment organisation (refer to definition in the Range Statement) and is undertaken to improve the quality of the assessment process.

Validation may be undertaken prior to and post the assessment of candidates and includes validation of formative and summative assessment activities (the latter includes assessment for recognition purposes).

Validation may be an internal process involving assessors from the same training and/or assessment organisation, or it may occur as an external exercise involving assessors from different organisations.

This unit focuses on the skills and knowledge needed to participate in assessment validation. It does not address the competence of leading the validation process - that function is addressed in TAAASS501B Lead and coordinate assessment systems and services.

The achievement of this unit includes interpretation of competency standards (where competency standards are used as the benchmarks for assessment). TAADES401B Use Training Packages to meet client needs addresses this skill in depth.

Achievement of this unit requires competence in conducting assessment. Therefore TAAASS402C Assess competence is a prerequisite/co-requisite unit.

Interpretation of the effectiveness of the assessment plan and selected/modified assessment tools also forms part of this unit of competency. Therefore, competence in the following units is also highly recommended.

TAAASS401C Plan and organise assessment

TAAASS403B Develop assessment tools

The competence specified in this unit is typically required by assessors, lead assessors, training and/or assessment consultants.


Not applicable.

Elements and Performance Criteria

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance Criteria


Prepare for validation


The purpose, focus and context of validation is confirmed and discussed with relevant people


The approach to validation is discussed and confirmed in accordance with the defined purpose/s, context, relevant assessment system policies and procedures and organisational/ legal/ethical requirements


Relevant benchmarks for assessment are analysed and the evidence needed to demonstrate that competency is collectively agreed


Any related documentation relevant to validation proceedings is identified and collectively agreed


Material/s to be used in validation sessions are obtained, read and interpreted and validation activities collectively agreed


Contribute to validation process


Active participation in validation sessions and activities is demonstrated using appropriate communications skills


Participation in validation sessions and activities, includes the review, comparison and evaluation of:

the overall assessment process

assessment plans

interpretation of competency standards or other benchmarks for assessment

selection and application of assessment methods

selection and use of assessment tools

the collected evidence

assessment decisions including the exercise of judgement


The review, comparison and evaluation is undertaken in accordance with the principles of assessment and rules of evidence


All documents used in the validation process are checked for accuracy and version control


Contribute to validation outcomes


Validation findings are collectively discussed, analysed and agreed to support improvements in the quality of assessment


Recommendations to improve assessment practice are discussed, agreed and recorded


Changes to own assessment practice, arising from validation and appropriate to assessment role and responsibilities, are implemented

Required Skills

Not applicable.

Evidence Required

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of Assessment

To demonstrate competence against this unit candidates must be able to provide evidence that they have actively participated in and have contributed to a minimum of two validation sessions, using different validation approaches and validation activities.

The evidence provided must: explain the validation purpose and context and the legal and ethical responsibilities of assessors; include the collation of documentation to be submitted to the validation process; demonstrate access and interpretation of the competency standard and evidence requirements; demonstrate communication and liaison with relevant people and participation in providing feedback and interpreting documentation in validation sessions; demonstrate how the critical aspects of validation were addressed; show involvement in reviewing findings/outcomes, including, where relevant, contributing to the finalised validation documentation.

Evidence Requirements

Required knowledge includes:

what is competency-based assessment including

vocational education and training as a competency-based system

assessment is criterion referenced/distinction to norm referenced assessment

criterion used in national VET is endorsed or accredited competency standards defining specifications for performance of work/work functions and skills/knowledge

reporting of competency-based assessment

competency standards as the basis of qualifications

the principles of competency-based assessment

the structure and application of competency standards

how to interpret competency standards and other related assessment information to determine the evidence needed to demonstrate competency including:

the components of competency

assessment of Employability Skills, dimensions of competency and OHS requirements

Training Package Assessment Guidelines

the qualification level of units

Australian Qualifications Framework Guidelines including characteristics of AQF levels

different assessment methods and which methods may be appropriate and relevant to different units/ different parts of individual units

different types of assessment tools, what tools work for what types of evidence, what are well constructed assessment tools and why

what are the principles of assessment and how they guide assessment and validation processes

what are the rules of evidence, why are they important, particularly in a validation context

the various reasons for carrying out validation and the different approaches to validation that may be appropriate:

before assessment

during assessment

after assessment

the critical aspects of validation, including validation of:

assessment processes

methods and tools

the collected evidence leading to assessment decisions

assessment decisions

different aspects of quality systems such as:

local/relevant strategies to meet the AQTF

continuous improvement systems

quality assurance policies and processes

Assessment system policies and procedures

records management systems

relevant policy, legislation, codes of practice and national standards including national Commonwealth and state/territory legislation for example:

Training Packages/competency standards/other assessment benchmarks

licensing requirements

providing accurate information

meeting environmental standards

industry/workplace requirements

duty of care under common law

recording information and confidentiality requirements


workplace relations

industrial awards/enterprise agreements

relevant OHS legislation, codes of practice, standards and guidelines, impacting on assessment

Required skills and attributes include:

research skills to:

access and analyse relevant documents for validation

use a range of source documents to access information for validation

evaluation/revision skills to:

determine evidence requirements from competency standards

review assessment process

review assessment methods and tools

review collected evidence

literacy skills to:

read and understand the documents relevant to validation

observation skills to:

evaluate and compare assessment planning, organisation, methods, tools, and evidence documentation leading to assessment judgements

identify where improvements to the assessment process can be made

communications and interpersonal skills to:

effectively participate and contribute to validation activities and sessions

collaborate with colleagues

seek and receive feedback on assessment practice

share sensitive information

maintain confidentiality of sensitive information

gain and maintain trust of colleagues

provide advice and support to colleagues

planning skills to:

participate within agreed timeframes

problem solving skills to:

identify information that is inconsistent, ambiguous or contradictory

suggest/confirm recommendations for improvements in assessment

Products that could be used as evidence include:

recommendations as a result of reviewing assessments, and why

evaluations of the quality of assessment tools against the identified competency standards

evaluations of the evidence collected against identified competency standards, and whether it meets the rules of evidence

suggested recommendations discussed for modification

Processes that could be used as evidence include:

how competency standards and other documents were interpreted and evidence requirements identified

how assessment decisions were evaluated

how assessment feedback was collated and evaluated

what contribution was made to validation activities

Resource implications for assessment include:

access to competency standards and other related assessment documentation

access to completed assessment tools

access to assessment reports/records

access to suitable assessment validation venue/equipment

access to a validation group

access to relevant workplace documentation

cost/time considerations

meeting personnel requirements retime management

The collection of quality evidence requires that:

assessment must address the scope of this unit and reflect all components of the unit i.e. the Elements, Performance Criteria, Range Statement, Evidence Guide, Employability Skills

a range of appropriate assessment methods/evidence gathering techniques is used to determine competency

evidence must be gathered in the workplace whenever possible. Where no workplace is available, a simulated workplace must be provided

the evidence collected must relate to a number of performances assessed at different points in time and in a learning and assessment pathway these must be separated by further learning and practice

assessment meets the rules of evidence

a judgement of competence should only be made when the assessor is confident that the required outcomes of the unit have been achieved and that consistent performance has been demonstrated

Specific evidence requirements must include:

active participation in a minimum of two validation sessions/meetings which, in combination, address the critical aspects of validation using different validation approaches and activities

clear explanations of the purposes of validation and the legal and ethical responsibilities of assessors

collation of all documentation relating to the validation process in a logical manner

demonstration of communications and liaison with relevant people

provision of feedback and interpretation of documentation in validation sessions

record of contribution to validation findings

Integrated assessment means that:

this unit can be assessed alone or as part of an integrated assessment activity involving relevant units in the TAA04 Training and Assessment Training Package.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Training and/or assessment organisation refers to:

a Registered Training Organisation (RTO), i.e. an organisation registered to provide recognised training and assessment services; includes TAFE institutes, private commercial colleges/ companies, enterprises, community organisations, group training companies and schools

an organisation working in a partnership arrangement with an RTO to provide recognised training and assessment services

an organisation that provides non-recognised training and assessment services

Purpose and focus of validation may include:

as part of organisational quality assurance processes

to address an identified area of risk in assessment practice and quality

to demonstrate compliance with the Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF) Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs)

to ensure assessments meet the evidence requirements of the competency standards or other assessment benchmarks

to provide evidence for external audit

to provide evidence for internal audit

to improve assessment practices

to evaluate the quality of assessment tools

to provide professional development

to increase assessor confidence

to determine whether different assessors using the same tools collect the same types and levels of evidence

to determine whether different assessors interpret the same evidence similarly

to determine whether assessment decisions reflect the principles of assessment and rules of evidence

Context of validation may include:

internal to the organisation, e.g. same site or across sites

external to the organisation, e.g. in a industry, region, city, state, assessor network

through licensing or similar body

with co-assessors

with peers/colleagues from other training and/or assessment organisations

Relevant people must include:

other assessor/s involved in the validation exercise

Relevant people may include:

lead assessors

managers, supervisors

technical and subject experts, including occupational health and safety (OHS) experts and language, literacy and numeracy specialists

personnel or partners with responsibilities for input into the quality assurance system

training and/or assessment coordinators

industry clients

industry regulators

employee and employer representatives

members of professional associations

personnel from a state or territory registering body

independent validators

Approach to validation may include:

assessment panels

moderation meetings

collectively developing/reviewing banks of assessment tools and exemplars


field testing, trialling and piloting assessment tools

peer review

team assessment

internal audit process

client feedback mechanisms

mentoring of less experienced by more experienced assessors

use of independent assessment validator to review validation processes

Assessment system policies and procedures may include:

candidate selection

rational and purpose of competency-based assessment

assessment records/data management/information management

recognition of current competency/recognition of prior learning/credit arrangements

assessors - needs, qualifications, maintaining currency

assessment reporting procedures

assessment appeals

candidate grievances/complaints


evaluation/internal audit


access and equity/reasonable adjustment

partnership arrangements

links with human resource or industrial relations systems

links with overall quality management system

Organisational/legal/ethical requirements may include:

legal and ethical responsibilities of assessors

assessment system policies and procedures

reporting, recording and retrieval systems for assessment, including documenting the agreed approach to validation

licensing/legal ramifications of assessing competence

requirements of training and/or assessment organisations relating to assessment and validation

quality assurance systems

business and performance plans

access and equity policies and procedures

collaborative/partnership arrangements

policies, procedures and programs

defined resource parameters

mutual recognition arrangements

industrial relations systems and processes, awards/enterprise agreements

AQTF Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), in particular Standard 8, RTO assessment

registration scope

human resource policies/procedures and legal requirements including anti-discrimination, equal employment, job role/responsibilities/conditions

relevant industry codes of practice

confidentiality and privacy requirements of information relating to completed assessments

OHS considerations, including:

ensuring OHS requirements are adhered to during the assessment process

identifying and reporting OHS hazards and concerns to relevant personnel

Benchmark/s for assessment refers to:

the criterion against which the candidate is assessed which, may be a competency standard/unit of competency, assessment criteria of course curricula, performance specifications, product specifications


is material collected which, when matched against the specifications in the competency standards, provides proof of competency achievement

Related documentation may include:

the Assessment Guidelines of the relevant Training Package/s

information from the competency standards about the resources required for assessment, the assessment context, appropriate assessment methods


assessment activities identified in accredited modules derived from the relevant competency

assessment activities in Support Materials related to the relevant competency standards

any requirements of OHS, legislation, codes of practice, standards and guidelines

indicators and levels of competence of the National Reporting System

organisational requirements for demonstration of work performance

product specifications

Material/s may include:

assessment tools

samples of collected evidence

documentation outlining the basis of assessment decisions

reports/records of assessment decisions

validation templates

validation checklists

assessment exemplars and competency standards

sampling techniques

banks of assessment tools

survey proformas

Validation activities may include:

analysing and reviewing assessment tools

analysing and reviewing collected evidence

analysing and reviewing assessment decisions/records of assessment outcomes

examining assessment records

examining assessment systems

discussing the assessment process, issues, difficulties in interpretation

holding interviews with each other or with management, trainers/facilitators, candidates

analysing client feedback

observing assessment conduct

using validation tools

reviewing and interpreting Assessment Guidelines

examining assessor qualifications

analysing appeals processes

recording evidence of validation processes and outcomes

Assessment process is defined as:

key steps involved in the assessment cycle

Assessment plan is the overall planning document for the assessment process and may include:

the purpose and aims of the assessment

the context of assessment

relevant competency standards to be used as the benchmarks for assessment

other assessment information/documentation identified as relevant

identified personnel

identified assessment methods and assessment tools

possibilities for clustering units of competency for assessment purposes

identified OHS hazards, including assessed risks and control strategies

material and/or physical resources required

organisational arrangements for conducting assessment

OHS reporting requirements

any special assessment needs, e.g. personal protective equipment requirements

outline of assessment milestones, time lines and target dates

candidate self-assessment procedures

connections to relevant organisational plans, polices and procedures

Assessment methods are the particular techniques used to gather evidence and may include:

direct observation, for example:

real work/real time activities at the workplace

work activities in a simulated workplace environment

structured activities, for example:

simulation exercises/role-plays



activity sheets

questioning, for example:

written questions, for example, on a computer



verbal questioning


oral or written examinations (applicable at higher AQF levels)

portfolios, for example:

collections of work samples compiled by the candidate

product with supporting documentation

historical evidence

journal/log book

information about life experience

review of products, for example:

products as a result of a project

work samples/products

third party feedback, for example:

testimonials/reports from employers/supervisors

evidence of training

authenticated prior achievements

interview with employer, supervisor, peer

Assessment tools contain:

the instruments to be used for gathering evidence such as:

a profile of acceptable performance measures


specific questions or activities

evidence/observation checklists

checklists for the evaluation of work samples

candidate self-assessment materials

the procedures, information and instructions for the assessor/candidate relating to the use of assessment instruments and the conditions for assessment

Judgement is a two-step process and means:

the decision made by the assessor on whether the evidence provided meets the principles of assessment and rules of evidence

the decision made by the assessor, based on the evidence provided and evaluated, on whether the candidate is competent/not yet competent

Principles of assessment are:





Rules of evidence are:





Recommendations for improvement may include:

ongoing professional development strategies for assessors

changes to assessment system policies and procedures

changes to assessment strategies

changes to assessment plans

changes to selected assessment methods

changes/development of new assessment tools

improved records management

changes to assessment resources

instigation of/changes to partnership arrangements

improvements to evidence collection

provision of additional information for assessors/candidates

greater advice/support/supervision of assessors


liaison with technical experts/specialist support


Not applicable.

Employability Skills

This unit contains employability skills.

Licensing Information

Not applicable.