Thinking of enrolling in an online course with Fortress Learning? Here is some advice from recent graduates

In the name of research (and because we were curious) Fortress Learning reached out to our recent graduates to ask them a series of three questions:

What questions do you wish you had asked before starting your course?
What do you wish you had known during your course?
What advice would you give someone who is about to start their course?

It was truly humbling the amount of detailed, in-depth responses we received. We felt it was only fair to share this constructive and well-thought-out feedback with those who could use it the most: our students.

To any new or existing Fortress Learning students, here are some helpful tips, thoughts and opinions from those who have gone before you:

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The single best predictor of success for Cert IV TAE and Diploma students

What do all successful Fortress Learning students have in common? Discipline.

“Discipline is the ability to give yourself a command and then follow it.” – Bob Proctor.

When it comes to completing your Cert IV TAE or Diploma, you don’t have to like it to do it; you don’t even have to want to do it; you just have to choose to do it.

“My only issues in completing the course were due to procrastination given the flexible study pattern.” – Jacob, Fortress Learning Cert IV TAE Graduate.

Jacob is not alone. When you have 6 months or a whole year to complete a qualification, it is very easy to think, “I’ve got heaps of time, I’ll just start it tomorrow”.

Read more…

How will I be assessed in Fortress Learning’s TAE40116 Cert IV TAE?

Everyone expects that the Cert IV TAE will include something to do with delivering training.  Everyone expects that they will be assessed in delivering some training.  But, there is much more to the Cert IV TAE and that means there is much more to its assessment than just delivering training.

This picture will show you how Fortress Learning has structured assessment in its Certificate IV in Training & Assessment course. Read more…

Should I Upgrade my Cert IV TAE or just do the Dip VET? Why not have the Option of doing both?


As we move away from the TAE40110 Cert IV TAE, more and more people are questioning the value of the qualification:  Do I even need a Cert IV TAE anymore?  Should I just do the Dip VET?

It is a great question, but one that is not so easily answered.   There certainly is a shift toward the Dip VET being the qualification held by people who want to be taken seriously as training professionals, and there are more and more jobs that have it as an essential requirement.

But, there are still lots of people – and employers – who want to see the Cert IV TAE as well.   Rightly or wrongly, there is an assumption that people who have the Dip VET but not the Cert IV have somehow jumped too far ahead – they might have learned to run, but they cannot be trusted to walk….

It’s a vexed situation, and one that complicates the decision about whether to upgrade the Cert IV or just go for the Dip VET. Read more…

Upgrading from TAE40110 to TAE40116 with Fortress Learning: What does it look like?

TAE40116 Upgrade

The new TAE40116 Cert IV in TAE is not entirely the same as the older TAE40110 Cert 4 TAE. While not everyone will be jumping to upgrade, people who are wanting to distinguish themselves as training professionals are telling us that they are keen to do so.

Yes, 8 of the 10 units are equivalent, but don’t be fooled into thinking that a TAE40116 Upgrade can just be a matter of showing your old certificate and showing a resume or job description.

Knowing what is involved first requires knowledge of what has changed.  Here, we will go through the differences between TAE40116 and TAE40110, and what it means for your Upgrade with Fortress Learning. Read more…

Studying your Cert IV TAE: 10 strategies to decimate distractions

Life is full of distractions (we promise this article isn’t one of them).

When it comes to completing your online Cert IV TAE course – or any other course for that matter – distractions could be the difference between success and failure.

We all know how good it feels to be completely consumed by a task and operating at maximum productivity, but how do you get rid of those pesky distractions and get in “THE ZONE”?

Here are 10 strategies to help you deal with distractions while you complete your Cert IV TAE. Read more…

Why response times matter for Cert IV TAE and Dip VET online learners.

Cert IV TAE and Dip VET online

If there is one thing we have learned over our years of training Cert IV TAE and Dip VET students, it is this:  people don’t just like to know what is happening, they need to know when it will happen.

Everyone is busy.   Our students are busy professionals who are juggling the often competing demands for limited time.  And limited energy.

So, when they have a window of opportunity to get some of their course done, they need to make the most of it. Read more…

Why is Fortress Learning investing in VET research?

When we advertised the role of Research Coordinator we expected some people to ask about the job and see whether it might fit with them.  What we didn’t expect was the level of interest in why we are wanting to conduct research in VET in the first place.

This idea is one that has been discussed in Fortress Learning for some years, but it was only recently that the commitment was made to explore it further.  During a recent visit to China, our Manager, Bryan Read more…

How and When to Upgrade your Cert IV TAE

Cert IV TAE Upgrade

The new TAE Training Package that came out in April 2016 had a few changes. Understanding those changes is key to understanding how best to upgrade your Cert IV TAE, and when to do it. This article will introduce what has changed and what you can be doing to prepare yourself so you can hit the ground running as soon as it becomes available.   Read more…

Why the new TAE must cost more

Fair Value Line

I believe the asking price for the new Cert IV TAE and Dip VET will go up. Why?

The TAE has become a commodity. The number of RTOs advertising the qualification has, in recent years, exploded. The number of people demanding the qualification has also increased, with many of these people not really needing all that the Cert IV TAE involves.

The commodification has created a downward pressure on prices, which has squeezed Read more…

Some questions about ASQA’s new Provider Profile

How ASQA chooses to do stuff has a lot to do with risk management. Until recently, this was based on a Risk Rating that they gave each RTO. That score used to essentially inform how closely they would be watching any particular RTO.

This is changing to a new system, called the Provider Risk Profile, which includes something called a Compliance History Indicator. This article will introduce the new system, and then pose some questions about how it will be administered and used to guide future regulatory decisions. Read more…

My Role as Your Trainer (Infographic)

Trainers don’t just train.  They listen, they learn, they plan, they adapt, they help, they soothe, they challenge and they tolerate.

Students expect all this, and often more besides.  But, for a Trainer to be effective at training, they must be very clear about what is most important. Read more…

Continuing Incompetence – The loophole that will undermine the quality of the new TAE Cert IV.

The TAE Cert IV cannot be trusted.  It is common knowledge that holding one does not actually mean you have the skills and knowledge that it is meant to reflect.  That’s why the powers that be have gone to a lot of effort to ensure that Trainers and Assessors are suitably skilled to make a professional contribution to the VET sector, with much of this aimed squarely at the poor quality of Cert IV TAE courses.

However, despite their great efforts, they have left a hole that will allow for continued erosion of standards and a further decline in confidence. Read more…

Here be dragons. Advice from Cert IV TAE students. (Infographic)


In the olden days, “Here be Dragons” was used on maps to point out dangerous or unexplored territories.  When it comes to the Cert IV TAE (and our other courses), there are a few dragons as well.  So, just like the mariners of old relied on maps to find their way past obstacles, we too can learn from the people who have gone before us.

To help with that, we asked our Cert IV TAE students what advice they would give people who are just starting out and they told us these 5 things. Read more…

Never felt pressured with my Cert IV TAE.

dad juggling babies and study


Every now and then, a Cert IV TAE student writes a Review that we believe really captures what Fortress Learning tries do. Instead of them ending up hidden among the others, we will share them with you, and try to explain why we think they are so appropriate.

Bernhard – what did he say?

Learning as an adult is not easy, especially if you have a full-time job and a young family. With Fortress Learning it never felt too pressured because you are free to learn whenever you got the time and the mind for it. The feedback is motivating and keeps you going. Overall a great experience.

Read more…