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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Learn more about FTTA's Nationally Recognised teacher's aide courses. Below is a list of the most common questions we get on a regular basis. This information is general in nature, subject to change, and may not apply to you. If you have further questions please don't hesitate to contact one of our friendly student advisors by email, phone or pop in for a chat.

Do I need to find a placement?

All students enrolled in a Nationally Recognised Qualification are required to complete a work placement. FTTA can organise a placement for you however as we have many students to find placements for, you may not be placed in your ideal workplace. Students may approach a local workplace of their preference and ask if a place is available. Many students have someone in their circle of friends, family and acquaintances who may be able to assist. FTTA will then ensure the workplace is suitable and discuss the requirements with the school. More information is provided during your course.

Can I do a placement at my child’s school?

You may do a placement in a school where your child attends, however it is standard practice to not be in the same classroom as this can cause issues.

What is the difference between CHC30213 Certificate III in Eduction Support & CHC40213 Certificate IV in Education Support?

The CHC30213 Certificate III in Education Support is the entry level qualification. It covers all of the basic topics of working as a teacher assistant. The CHC40213 Certificate IV in Education Support is a higher level qualification and is more specialised. The CHC40213 Certificate IV in Education Support covers most of the topics in the CHC30213 Certificate III in Education Support as well as having a heavier emphasis on working with children with special needs. Teacher assistants who work with special needs may be paid a higher salary.

Do I receive a hardcopy of the learner guide?

Yes – you can request the hardcopy of your learner guide. All class based students are supplied with a learner guide in hardcopy format. Note that students will need access to a computer on a regular basis in order to complete learning and assessment activities such as viewing lectures.

QLD government funding – Am I eligible?

There are strict rules set down by the government that determines who is eligible for subsidized fees. You can read the information provided under the fee’s tab of each course or speak to an FTTA student adviser about your situation. Students must live in Queensland. Generally speaking, students cannot have completed a qualification at the same or higher level as the qualification being applied for.

I’m an International student – can I enrol?

Unfortunately, FTTA do not currently enrol students who are in Australia on a student visa.

What are the activities or assessments like?

There are no exams, essays or tests. The assessments consist of short answer questions, a workplace portfolio, workplace scenarios and verbal questions as well as a workplace demonstration which is conducted during your placement.

RPL - Am I eligible and how does it work?

Each case is different however RPL typically requires several years’ experience in the same role as the course being applied for as well as previous training such as PDs or courses. RPL is most commonly undertaken as an assessment only pathway, meaning students simply complete the course assessments, and skip the learning part which makes up about 80% of the course time. It is best to email FTTA with as many details as possible so that we can reply with accurate advice.

What support do you offer students?

FTTA trainers offer exceptional support to all students. All students can email trainers at any time. Students can also call their trainers directly to discuss issues and ask questions or even pop in for a chat. With a graduation rate of well over 80%, FTTA's support is exceptional and gets results.

How long does it take to complete a Nationally Recognised Qualification?

Our courses are expected to take 26 weeks to complete. As this course is self-paced, some students can finish in a shorter period of time, while others may take longer. It also depends on the number of hours you are able to devote per week, previous study experience and experience with children (including your own). Students who need additional support such as those with no previous workplace experience, may be placed on a longer program in negotiation with their trainer.

Are classes available near me?

Classes are available in some areas such as Perth (Cockburn) and Brisbane however please check the calendar for availability. We limit class sizes and almost all classes fill up, so it is best to enrol well in advance to secure your place

How do classes work?

Students can attend a series of workshops while enrolled with FTTA (subject to availability) in certain courses. These workshops typically run for one day per week for ten weeks. Sometimes FTTA run classes over longer periods. Most of your study is completed outside of these workshops. Each workshop aims to introduce students to the course topic. We use the term 'class' for simplicity, however they are more like tutorials, to give students some additional face to face time with trainers and to allow you to interact with other people in the same boat.

How do distance or online courses work?

Students enrol in distance courses to maximise flexibility due to being time poor, having family or other commitments or due to living too far from the class location. Distance students follow a structured and supported program with ongoing regular contact from their trainer including live webinars. Students complete set learning tasks followed by the assessments and a placement. All students attend a placement and are visited by their trainer/assessor.

I haven’t studied for a long time and feel apprehensive. Do you think I will be okay?

The majority of students who enroll haven’t been in a classroom or studied for many years. Our trainers are experienced and skilled practitioners who are there to help you every step of the way. We specialise in providing training and assessment services to busy adult learners. The average student age is 37 - so we understand the pressures and stresses that come with studying and learning later in life.

Payments – how do they work?

Payments are made by Direct Debit using Commonwealth Banks DD system and are automatically deducted on a regular basis depending on your chosen payment plan.

How does the Teacher’s Aide combo work?

The Teacher’s Aide Combo allows students to complete two similar qualifications at the same time. Students must complete all of the requirements of both qualifications, however as there are significant overlaps, the time required is reduced substantially. In fact, the difference between the two courses is very small (of the 17 units, 9 units are identical, and 7 units are nested meaning the higher level course has a slightly more advanced version of the same unit found in the lower level course).

Can I start a class halfway through the term?

As classes are limited in numbers and generally fill up quickly, places are only provided to students who are able to attend all workshops. Some exceptions apply such as students with special needs.

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Distance

In today’s busy and demanding world, adult learners are looking for more flexible ways to gain qualifications, increase their job prospects and improve their earning potential. Gone are the days where students can afford to spend 20 or 30 hours per week in classroom. Advances in technology now allows students to access high quality and engaging resources in their own home.

Many students prefer to study their course without coming into class on a regular basis. This is commonly referred to as distance learning but can also be called external, online, blended or flexible learning. These terms are very similar and generally mean that:

  • There is little or no attendance on campus
  • Most learning materials are accessed through a website portal
  • Students will often have hardcopy materials as well
  • Students will still have access to support via email and phone
  • Many students still attend tutorials for additional assistance

Flexible learning (also called blended learning) is a combination of class and distance and is where a student attends some online learning and some class based learning. There are many reasons why students choose to study by distance:

  • Classes are not held in the local area
  • Work commitments
  • Family commitments
  • Health reasons
  • A want of more flexible study times
  • Time poor for various reasons
  • Previous experience meaning classes cover existing knowledge
  • Alternative study programs or pathways
  • Regular travel or hospital stays
  • Existing worker completing a traineeships or RPL

Many courses have a work placement requirement such as aged care and child care regardless of which mode of study selected however this is usually completed in the local area.

Even though students are not attending classes, they are still able to access support services including:

  • Email and phone support
  • Booking one on one tutoring
  • Attending regularly held workshops
  • Attending some classes (subject to available places)
  • Orientation and engagement sessions early and throughout the course

The online portal is a structured learning pathway. This means that students work though activities and assessments in a structured manner. This structure is easy to follow and explained step by step. Each topic has instructions on how to complete that particular topic. Resources in the portal generally include:

  • Learner guides for each topic
  • Power point presentations
  • Links to YouTube videos and websites
  • Additional readings
  • Toolboxes with videos and a range of activities
  • Practice activities
  • Free short courses such as work skills, literacy skills and Microsoft Office
  • Assessments and assessment tips and guides
  • Lectures from your trainers

Online learning is becoming more and more popular each year and many courses now enrol more online students than class based students.

If you would like more information please speak to one of our student advisors or you can enrol using our online enrolment form at ftta.com.au

Class Based Learning

Class based learning is a popular study mode and is great for students who have not studied for a long period of time, who live closer to the training location or who simply enjoy being in class. We always recommend enrolling in a class based mode where possible as students who attend classes are typically more successful.

In today’s busy and demanding world, adult learners are looking for more flexible ways to gain qualifications, increase their job prospects and improve their earning potential. Gone are the days where students can afford to spend 20 or 30 hours per week in a classroom. Advances in technology now allows students to access high quality and engaging resources in their own home.

Flexible learning (also called blended learning) is a combination of class and distance and is where a student attends some online learning and some class based learning. Class based learning with FTTA involves the following:

  • Attend class one day per week over a period of time
  • Complete set homework activities and assessments between classes
  • Attend tutorial as needed and recommended by your trainer
  • Complete the workplace learning component
  • Regularly accessing resources and learning materials in the online portal
  • Regular contact with trainers via email, phone, individual meetings/tutorials or during class

Students tell us that they enjoy being in class for two main reasons:
Firstly, because they can easily ask questions and trainers can help students when stuck. Note that many courses have online lectures (recorded in class) for distance students.

Secondly, students enjoy the social aspect of class based learning: swapping stories, talking about the course and helping each other along the way. Many students make new friends and study together outside of class time.

There are many reasons why students choose a flexible class based study mode:

  • Attending full time is not possible
  • Work commitments
  • Family commitments
  • Health reasons
  • A want of more flexible study times
  • Time poor for various reasons
  • Previous experience meaning extensive class time is not an efficient use of time
  • Enrolled in other education programs
  • Regular travel or hospital stays

Many courses have a work placement requirement such as aged care and child care regardless of which mode of study selected however this is usually completed in the local area.

Even though students are attending classes, they are still able to access support services including:

  • Email and phone support
  • Booking one on one tutoring
  • Attending regularly held workshops
  • Attending some classes (subject to available places)
  • Orientation and engagement sessions early and throughout the course

The online portal is a structured learning pathway. This means that students work though activities and assessments in a structured manner as directed by their trainer. This structure is easy to follow and explained step by step. Each topic has instructions on how to complete that particular topic. Resources in the portal generally include:

  • Learner guides for each topic
  • Power point presentations
  • Links to YouTube videos and websites
  • Additional readings
  • Toolboxes with videos and a range of activities
  • Practice activities
  • Free short courses such as work skills, literacy skills and Microsoft Office
  • Assessments and assessment tips and guides
  • Lectures from your trainers

Flexible learning is becoming more and more popular as people become busier.

If you would like more information please speak to one of our student advisors or you can enrol using our online enrolment form at ftta.com.au

Education Support - A Guide

Education Assistants work in schools such as kindergartens, primary schools, high schools and special needs centres.

Education Assistants work under the guidance and instruction of teachers. They can work with a single student for most of the day or float in a class or a number of classes helping many different students.

Education Assistants or EAs for short can also be called integration aides, teacher aides, support workers, teacher assistants, Aboriginal and Indigenous Education Officers or AIEOs, Home Economic Assistants, or school support officers.

Some of the main tasks of an EA includes:

  • Helping individual students with activities and learning
  • Helping small groups of students with activities and learning
  • Helping students with core skills such as reading, writing and numeracy
  • Helping students who have learning difficulties, a disability or a disorder
  • Helping the teacher with behaviour management, ensuring that students are on task
  • Helping the teacher with activities such as cleaning and preparing resources
  • Ensuring that students are safe at all times

Education Assistants are most often employed to work with students who need additional support in learning or due to a disability or behavioural issues.

EAs may also work in specialist positions such as in literacy programs or youth at risk programs.

To obtain work as an EA you will need to have the following:

  • A Working with Children Check
  • Usually a police clearance is also required
  • A relevant qualification such as the Certificate III in Disability or Certificate III in Education Support
  • A suitable demeanour, attitude and presentation to work in a school environment
  • A love of working with children and other people in a team environment
  • A good quality resume and cover letter

Education Assistants undertake many community service work tasks including but not limited to:

  • Working with parents and guardians on a daily basis
  • Assisting with case management (IEPs and IBPs)
  • Organising community events such as excursions and fetes
  • Assisting vulnerable groups of people such as low-socio economic
  • Ensuring abuse and neglect is reported to supervisors
  • Obtaining funding such as grants from government departments or local businesses
  • Organising and assisting with events such as art displays
  • Working with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Assisting with a range of disabilities and disorders
  • Researching and informing clients of support services and networks
  • Liaising with community groups
  • Liaising with specialist case workers such as psychologists and teachers
  • Managing behaviour and learning
  • Planning activities and creating resources

Education assistants often work with children with disabilities including but not limited to:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Dyslexia
  • Processing disorders
  • Developmental delay disorders
  • Foetal Alcohol Syndrome
  • Oppositional Defiance Disorder
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Mental health
  • Fragile X
  • Downs Syndrome

It is generally easy to find casual and part time work as an education assistant by putting your name down at all schools in your local area. This often leads to more permanent employment. Many education assistants work part time.

When looking for work, don’t forget special needs schools which are schools within the main school that even have their own Principal, teachers and administration staff. Over 90% of people who enrol in a course to become an education assistant are female and are often mothers who are looking for family friendly work hours.

Depending on the course and level, education assistants learn the following:

  • Safety including duty of care laws
  • Education policy and regulations
  • Supporting students literacy and numeracy learning
  • Instructional techniques (how to help students learn)
  • Techniques for working with a diverse range of people
  • Behaviour management techniques
  • Developmental domains such as cognitive, language and social development
  • Basics of and techniques for working with specific disabilities and disorders
  • Creating activities and basic planning
  • Working with Individual Education Plans (IEPs) and Individual Behaviour Plans (IBPs)
  • Early Years Learning Framework implementation

Working in the education sector is challenging, rewarding and is a never ending learning curve. Rarely will you be bored working as an education assistant as each day presents a new challenge.

If you would like more information, please speak to one of our student advisors.

ABOUT US

With more than 5000 graduates, FTTA is the go-to provider for teacher's aide courses. 1 in 2 students choose to study the CHC40213 Certificate IV in Education Support with FTTA.

              

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