Right Attitude. Right System. Right Team.


Every now and then, a student writes a Review that we believe deserves to be featured and discussed. Instead of them ending up hidden among the others, we will share them with you, and let you know our thoughts about them.

This is what Anup said: 

I enrolled for Diploma of Leadership and management with lots of hesitation as I did not know much about this organization. After I started, I realized I made a right decision choosing Fortress learning.

They have the right attitude. They have the right system. They have the right team. Training resources were great.

Bryan expects the comprehensive and high quality submission, so it made me work hard and put in more efforts and time.

Another good thing is, submission gets checked within four days. So, they do not make you wait long to get your assessment checked.

There was never a moment when I was frustrate dealing with them.

If I have to give any suggestion, I will say, please include more courses.

Why did this particular testimonial catch our attention?  Read more…

We Revisit Painful Truth #8 as ASQA Cancels Qualifications


 

In January, Fortress Learning published an article called The Ten Painful Truths About The Cert IV TAE.

Recently, the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) announced that it will cancel 432 Security and First Aid Qualifications and Statements of Attainment issued to 276 individuals.

This rings true to Painful Truth #8. Just because you get it, doesn’t always mean you get to keep it.

Read more…

The Cert IV TAE: You get out what you put in


Every now and then, a Cert IV TAE student writes a Review that we believe deserves to be featured and discussed. Instead of them ending up hidden among the others, we will share them with you, and let you know our thoughts about them.

This is what Michael said: 

The driest, most boring course I have ever had the misfortune of having to complete.

Why did this particular testimonial catch our attention? 

Michael does have a point when he says the Cert IV TAE is “dry” and “boring”. We sympathise – the Cert IV TAE can be tough going.

As mentioned in The Ten Painful Truths about the Cert IV TAE, “For many people, it is something that they would rather have done than something that they want to do. For many people, it is something that they have to do to satisfy someone else’s requirements rather than something that they want to do to satisfy their own requirements.”

While yes, it is not a course that is commonly described as “a bunch of fun”, it is what it is. Simply put: if you want to be a Trainer and Assessor, the Cert IV in Training and Assessment is something that you have to do.

Once you have accepted that, whether you like it or not, the next question to ask yourself is why are you doing it?

In study and in life, your ‘why’ is your motivating force. Your ‘why’ will shape the thoughts and feelings that you bring to your Cert IV TAE experience. Approaching your study with, “I hate this,” will inevitably mean that yes, you will hate it and you will continue to hate it…  unless you can change your approach.

If you are required to complete the Cert IV TAE for work and compliance purposes, it may be all too tempting to feel resentment, to simply “tick the boxes” and drag your feet all the way through the qualification.

If this is your ‘why’, you may be selling yourself short.

If your ‘why’ is to better yourself, to embrace the opportunity of learning new skills, gaining up-to-date knowledge and the genuine want to hone your performance, the qualification will look and feel completely different.

It’s all about getting the most out of the course, and you only get out what you put in.

 

If you would like to know more about what it means to be a student with us, how about you read Dear Future Student, check out Our Courses, or give us a call on 1300 141 994 and we can explore what that would look like.

Get to know your Trainer: Who are they? (Pt 1)


 

Online learning can be flexible, rewarding, affordable, efficient – it can be pretty great!

But, it also can be a lonely path filled with anxiety and uncertainty.

Here at Fortress, we like to make that path as warm and welcoming as possible.

Our TAE Trainers, Bryan and Emma, are very lovely and very willing to answer your questions. Get to know these wonderful humans – your Trainers – by reading our interview below.

This is Part 1 of a 3 part series: Get to know your Trainer.

Read more…

Overcoming Learner Discomfort


 

What is learner discomfort?

“When a learner becomes conscious of their own performance – or lack of – that then can lead to them becoming anxious, which is an uncomfortable place to be.

So by “learner discomfort”, I guess I am talking about feelings of anxiety, worry or concern. A lack of confidence in the learner’s ability to participate in any meaningful way; to progress in any meaningful way.” – Dr Bryan West, Fortress Learning Diploma Trainer.

Now that we know what it is, how do we overcome it? 

The four episodes below are from Fortress Learning’s series on teaching microskills called The Small Stuff.

In each episode, Bryan offers some strategies that you can implement in the classroom to make learning a much more comfortable, and therefore more productive, experience.

Read more…

Didn’t get marked as Satisfactory the first time? It’s not the end of the world.


 

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” – Thomas Edison.

Sometimes at Fortress Learning, our students get an assessment submission marked as Not Yet Satisfactory. This can cause disappointment, anxiety, sadness, and even anger!

The reality is, being marked as Not Yet Satisfactory is not the end of the world. It just means you get to have another shot at fulfilling the requirements of the task.

I sat down with Diploma Trainer and Managing Director of Fortress Learning, Dr Bryan West, to pick his brain about what it means to be marked as Not Yet Satisfactory.

Read more…

3 Pillars of Quality in action.. again!


Every now and then, a student writes a Review that we believe deserves to be featured and discussed. Instead of them ending up hidden among the others, we will share them with you, and let you know our thoughts about them.

This is what Carol said: 

I researched who was offering on-line courses, and Fortress Learning kept coming up, the comments from previous students were consistent.

I made contact, and they were not pushy, or imposing, which I sometimes the case when trying to gain customers.

Contact has been streamlined and straight-forward, and very prompt.

Read more…

RTOs Join Forces To Discuss Compliance


Emma presenting at the Inaugural RTO Managers' Meeting

Fortress Learning’s Compliance Manager, Emma Siebuhr, sharing Fortress Learning’s experience of the new TAE application process at the Inaugural RTO Managers’ Meeting.

 

The Inaugural RTO Managers’ Meeting was held in Brisbane on the 14th of February 2018. The meeting served as an opportunity for RTO Managers to come together and share their experiences with the new TAE application process and compliance in general.

Among those who attended were Fortress Learning’s Owner and Managing Director, Dr Bryan West; Fortress Learning’s Compliance Manager, Emma Siebuhr; and SAVE Training‘s Owner, Paul Pellier.

Read more…

Don’t Hesitate To Reach Out: Tracey’s Experience


Here is what Tracey said:

After initial confusion of which dashboard I should be working through for my Dual Dips and getting my head around the process required, I found access to be easy.

Staff supportive and feedback useful. Assistance with extension was seamless.

The couple of not so positive points were that not realizing the extent of support and input needed from my colleagues was much more than expected (thinking it would be along similar lines as previous TAFE courses completed).

My other point would be that although this is an online course, I would have preferred the option to be able to print the course notebooks as well as view them on screens.

Why did this particular testimonial catch our attention?

Tracey made 4 points in her testimonial that we would like to expand on:

Read more…

Feel the Power with The Small Stuff!


 

Silence… Pause… Predictability… While these three things may sound like the character traits of your 90-year-old Grandfather, they can prove to be very powerful when used in the classroom.

The three episodes below are from Fortress Learning’s series on teaching microskills called The Small Stuff.

Read more…

Fun games to boost learner engagement


Learner engagement: sounds easy enough, but in reality, sometimes engaging a class can prove to be an uphill battle.

Whether you have just started your lesson, just resumed class after a break, or if things are starting to get out of control, you need to have some strategies in place to get things back on track.

One way to do this could be to play a fun game.

While I call them games, Bryan doesn’t like them to be called games as they are “serious”. He prefers to use the term higher level engagement strategies.

Read more…

Actions to take when study is stressing you out


We’ve all been there. We have all sat at a desk re-reading the same section of text over and over again, becoming more and more frustrated by the second. Frustration leads to stress which leads to anxiety which leads to feelings of flight or fight.  We want to quit, or we want to argue.

If you are studying a Cert IV TAE, Dual Diploma of VET/TDD, or a Triple Diploma of Business, Business Administration and Leadership and Management and felt this way, you are not alone. When we get stressed, often we get caught in the same loop of thinking. The trick is to have coping strategies for when the stressful moment arises.

Here are 4 actions to take when study is stressing you out:

Read more…

Completing Your Qualification with Fortress: Robyn’s Experience


Every now and then, a graduating student writes a Review that we believe really captures what we try to 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.

Here is what Robyn said:

“In this day and age it is important to keep current in your competency (whatever that may be). More importantly it is vital to be able to prove that your competency is current.

With that desire, I enrolled with Fortress Learning to update my 2010 Diploma and complete the additional Units to achieve a double Diploma in Training (TAE50216 Design and Development and TAE50116 Vocational Education and Training).

On review of the Course Work and the associated requirements to complete, with a hectic work and personal life, I really did wonder how I was going to complete it all within the required timeframe. However, have you heard the expression ‘how do you eat an elephant’?

The answer is: one mouthful at a time. So following that analogy, I started the Course Work and uploaded each assignment as I completed them.

On each upload, Fortress acknowledged receipt of my work and provided encouraging feedback which helped spur me on to completion.

When I had issues, concerns or questions, Fortress were quick to respond and help me through.

I enjoyed the relationship with Fortress, the newfound learnings I acquired through researching and completing assignments. Learnings that I can apply at work and most of all I am very happy that I made the decision to update my qualification(s) with Fortress.” 

Read more…

Accountability: It’s a two way street


 

What does it mean to be accountable?

Here is the definition for “accountability” in the Business dictionary: “The obligation of an individual or organisation to account for its activities, accept responsibility for them, and to disclose the results in a transparent manner.”

Here at Fortress, we pride ourselves on being accountable. However, the thing about accountability is it takes two (Rod Stewart and Tina Turner say it best).

Read more…

The Importance of Feedback


“Providing students with meaningful feedback can greatly enhance learning and improve student achievement.” – Marianne Stenger, Eutopia.

When used effectively, feedback is one of the best learning tools out there.

Effective feedback depends upon an open, constructive relationship between Trainer and Student. Our trainers understand this – that their role is to guide you through the unknown; to help you bridge the gap between where you are now and where you need to be to meet the requirements of your qualification. When you finish your course, you should feel confident that you have all that it takes to be competent in your job. Feedback allows the skills and knowledge you need to be refined, honed and up-to-date.

Read more…

The Cert IV TAE: How “unlearning” can help you learn more


“Unlearning is not about forgetting. It’s about the ability to choose an alternative mental model or paradigm. When we learn, we add new skills or knowledge to what we already know. When we unlearn, we step outside the mental model in order to choose a different one.” – Harvard Business Review.

Unlearning what we already know can be tricky. It’s like going to a new country and learning how to drive on the opposite side of the road. Your cognitive memory has to unlearn the old in order to make way for the new.

Read more…

Studying a Cert IV TAE with Fortress Learning: User-Friendly


Every now and then, a Cert IV TAE student writes a Review that we believe deserves to be featured and discussed. Instead of them ending up hidden among the others, we will share them with you, and let you know our thoughts about them.

This is what Denise said:

“I found this RTO extremely user-friendly, my trainer Emma was fantastic and was always extremely kind and helpful throughout the course. She encouraged me and motivated me to pursue my studies in a very difficult time and made me feel on top of the world once I achieved the tasks at hand. Hands down the best RTO I have dealt with. Thank you Fortress Learning I look forward to my future studies with your organisation.”

Read more…

Enhancing International Cooperation Among VET/TVET Professionals – An Invitation to Participate


There is a lot written about the need for cooperation between nations in the area of VET and TVET. To support this, there exist many opportunities for high level executive and decision-makers to meet and share ideas.

However, the same opportunity does not exist for the individuals who work at the frontline of VET and TVET. This means that the Teachers and Trainers from across different VET and TVET systems do not have the opportunity to share their ideas and to learn from each other.

We would like to change that.

Australian International Vocational College of Education (AIVCE) would like to encourage trainers and assessors who work in VET and TVET to share their ideas, experiences, thoughts and opinions about their work.

Read more…