I am getting a lot of questions from our owner builders asking why they can no longer complete the White Card course (General Safety induction Training) online.
That is a question that you would need to ask WorkSafe.
To be quite honest, I know the answer...
There were simply too many RTO's out there not doing the right thing by owner builder students or anyone else need to do the training. There were many offerings of 'shonky' course which did not provide the fundamental thing required of a training course. They simply did not transfer knowledge. They were only interested in your money.
It is very sad that operators out there exist and that they make it impossible for the good operators to complete. Not only is it sad, but it is incredibly worrying when the knowledge and skills that need to be transferred to a student are for the sole purpose of keeping them safe. Achieving genuine transfer of knowledge through online learning is not easy. It takes a skilled and experienced course writer to author a course and set assignments, task and questions that truly allow the candidate to demonstrate competence.
Over the years we developed a great system for achieving this and expended an enormous amount of effort and resources to make certain not only our students (owner builders and others) got value for money and truly developed skills and knowledge that would help to keep them safe in a construction workplace. Importantly, as the vast majority of our students were owner builders, we contextualised the course over the years to ensure it had even more relevance to them in their role as Persons in Control of A Business Undertaking (PCBU) or as a Principal Contractor.
An owner builder has the added responsibility to ensure eveyone employed on their sites remain safe and have access to appropriate facilities. Further, they are responsible for ensuring each of the contractors engaged on the owner builder site that is undertaking a High Risk Construction Activity, is doing so under the provisions of a Safe Work Method Statement or similar.
All that said, the rest of the states have not yet followed suit, even though Work Health and Safety legislation is supposed to be harmonised across the states and territories.
So,guess what? Those same RTO's who did not do the right thing by their previous students, continue to wrought the system by offering the White Card online and issuing a Western Australian card. (they have the least stringent requirements in respect to ID and record keeping).
Hopefully, sanity will prevail at some time soon and we will be able to compete again in this very competitive market.
Sales even for our owner builder courses have dropped off considerably because we can non longer offer a package deal.
Is that fair? Probably not, but we will continue to only offer a quality product to our students, so if you can get to our offices, we are more than happy to offer the course face to face.
Best Regards and Happy Owner Building
I have an Dip Proj Mgt , a Dip WHS , an Adv Dip Risk Management , I have a white card (though issued years ago) - I am finding a lot of the activity to be undertaken in this course quite unnecessary - but here I am completing the course and providing evidence that I can communicate using technology..
Currently due to COVID there are a number of RTO who have been given the all clear to perform the white card via online zoom. So technically still face to face, just on the computer in the comfort of your own home. :)
Due to COVID, I also completed a white card via Zoom, which I thought was a fairly good compromise between physical interaction and "e-learning".
I completed my white card course online via zoom as well, worked well, took one day but didn't have to leave home to go anywhere.
Yes the white card should remain a face-face training course. Safety in the workplace can not be skimmed through via online courses. Communication skills and interactions with other people are essential for safe work to take place.
I'm a fitter by trade, and have a white card, and have found this course a gross overkill just to for the purpose of building a shed. Also providing evidence that I can communicate using technology as part of the course!
I am enjoying the course and what it has to offer - I have a white card and on completion of this course I look forward to securing my Owner Builder certification - this is also evidence that I can communicate using technology.
Thankfully white cards do not have an expiry date. The owner builder course helps to demonstrate what is required to successfully complete small domestic projects and shows where responsibility for managing all aspects of the project should be.
I have just completed the Owner Builder NSW Course, it has provided a useful refresher for WH&S information. (evidence of communicating through technology)
I have learned so much through the courses and associated assessments. Working in IT industry, i did not face any problem accessing information or use of technology :) . Cheers
I have a white card (online) and have to say this Owner/Builder course is so much more thought out and professional. It took a bit more time than I had expected but I learned a lot.
I agree Gilbert. This course which has been put together by Rick and his team is great. It is quite easy to navigate and I took a lot out of it. Although some things were more in depth than i was expecting, I'm glad i studied it and understood it. I'm looking forward to commencing my Owner Builder experience.
Which company did you use for the white card? Thx
I have completed my white card course one week ago and it's very useful to learn the safety factors.
Hi- did you do this online? Which company? Thx
antonio ( anthony) Pangallo
i will check out the white card options - good info here
I agree that with an online system there can be too many cowboys out there to take advantage of the system for personal gain. Its a shame but its a reality in todays world unfortunately
thanks for the information. I have recently completed my owner builders course and am looking to get my white card soon.
Interesting conversation regarding white cards. A shame that some trainers spoil it for everyone. I am looking at doing my white card in the next few weeks however only one training facility in my area and limited dates to fit in with so may have to have a trip to Sydney. Any recommendations for the best place to go would be appreciated.
Thanks for the info, Rick.
I am also going to be needing to complete the White Card, so if anyone finds a place in Northern NSW or Gold Coast / Brisbane, please do let me know.
White Card NSW course offerred in Lismore by WHS Whitecard. One day face to face. Casino also.
I am about to apply for a White Card course in my local area for the process of home renovating & part of my Owner builders qualification. However, during this period of "COVID19" lock downs & social isolation, it will be interesting to see how the course will run with less students per class, face to face learning, actual class availability & the ability to legally travel to the course. Maybe this could be a time for the return of on-line learning for this & many other courses, maybe with stricter guidelines etc..
I am enjoying taking part in the course and refreshing my knowledge. I am a Fibrous plasterer by trade, and have held a trade contractors licence from 1979. I also have a white card,but
I have just enrolled in the O/B Course and am keen to get a White Card. I live mid north coast and believe that Port Macquarie offers this course. Can anyone confirm?
As the owner of a dance school and mother of 2 toddlers I really wanted to do the White Card NSW course online to save a lot of hassle for my family.
I have just registered to start my owner builders course for NSW and currently hold a white card. Does anyone know if this has to be renewed if it was a while ago I that I did the course. I completed it in August 2009 and it does not have an expiry date on it :)
The first module of the Owner Builder course has covered a lot of what we learnt in the White Card Course. Well presented.
I took the white card course and found it very interesting and insightful for my knowledge. The first module in the Owner's Builder course was excellently set out which was a great refresher to the white card course in regards to WHS regulations, procedures and policies. It really taught me the essentials of safety and making sure we always have clear communication amongst those involved.
I have a white card and have just finished the tasks. now waiting for an answer.
I do not have a problem with doing the white card as a face to face course except finding a RTO nearby. I think writing a comment on a blog as proof of capability to use electronic communications is largely a moot point these days because of the prevalence of smart phones/devices and our appetite for using social media platforms.
Have completed my white card in a one day course an hour from home, would have been much more comfortable at home. Especially with COVID restrictions there were wait times on getting into the course and any practical activites such as PPE were just shown instead of participating.
Thank you! for this valuable information. I partially agree with you. Yes, an offline course is more helpful to understand the course. But there are few institutes in Australia, who are providing the online white card training course professionally in this pandemic situation. You can research on the internet about online course institutes.
Interesting read cannot understand why some common sense can’t prevail 1 card 1 standard for the whole of Australia.But then again look at how our premiers are running the individual states, some common sense would help there as well.
So ironic that a course about safety is ignoring the highest safety goal on the planet right now.
Thank you for this valuable information. Recently I complete my white card training online from Origin Institute.
I THINK THE WHITE CARD IS QUITE IMPORTANT
I have recently completed my white card for nsw in a classroom and the owner builder course is my next box to tick while plans are currently going through council.
Good to read through Rick,
Hi owner builders, I got my white card way back in 2011 at a face to face course and I remember the instructor saying that the white card is always valid as long as you haven't spent more than two years out of the construction industry. How anyone would know that or could police it is beyond me so I do agree that there should be refresher courses for a white card, however I've first hand worked with some people who cannot be "taught" safety as I don't believe they have the mental capacity!
Roel Van de Paar
Some online course providers do currently provide NSW white card training, and you can find solid discount codes for the same also. You will have to demonstrate in a video call that you are able to put on safety gear/PPE.
MR LAWRENCE SMITH
Courses are being advertised by RTO's in NSW as 'Online White Card course' - there is no mention of this on the Service NSW website, only a list of RTO's. So I'd assume that if an RTO is listed there, and that RTO is offering an Online White Card Course' then that must be legit. If anyone has information that clarifies this, would be good to hear/read. Cheers.
I have had my white card for years and I am in the process of finishing the online owner builders course.
Very impressed with current white card course requirements in NSW. In webinar session they required the camera on at all times to ensure the engagement and attempt of assessments by the real candidate. Good to see the systems in place to stop unqualified people obtaining white card enforcing safety at work sites.
Having completed the White Card course prior to commencing the Owner Builder course, I found the first unit somewhat repetitive. However, it has been a useful refresher and I have now completed the unit. Please take this reply as evidence of use of technology as requested.
I've been a licensed electrician since 2007, but due to the industries I've worked in, I have somehow managed to not get a white card. I completed a Mines Generic Induction in 2009, which is remarkably similar, but now I still have to complete the white card.
Sorry, I probably should have said that I did my White Card with a different company, not ownerbuildercourses,com or Abacus.
I agree with with most of the comments on this forum, I believe the white card should be conducted in a face to face environment, it is very important this card is granted in well managed and honest manner so that people remain safe on the job site and keeps others around them safe also and have not obtained their card in a dodgy unsafe way.
Rick your comments on RTO's and White Card training are quite relevant, but the problem I think is the scrutiny of RTO's in general.
I have a Western Australian issued White card from an RTO. The course content was comprehensive and I completed the units successfully. I appreciated that I was able to complete the course in my own time in my own home to work around my other full time commitments. I have no doubt there are shonky operators out there just as this is in any field. But regulation of course content and nationally recognised training I think has gone a long way to improve the quality of training providers.
I am completing the NSW owner builders course and have found the course content interesting and relevant. Not having come from a trade / construction background I have learned a lot of important information regarding the building process (even though I am only intending to use it on a relatively small project). I will be much better placed to oversee and run the project and have greater awareness of any issues that may potentially arise.
Gladstone Training Services is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) that offers friendly and flexible training for the Construction, Mining,
Have completed Green card and purple ohs card prior to the white card starting in 1999. Sad to see safety being put aside for a quick buck.
I have had a white card since 2006 and being a landscaper have continued in the construction industry. Recently my wallet was stolen with my white card in it. I have recently paid for a replacement and hope the records go back that far otherwise I may have to redo the course. Here’s hoping.
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Rick Heaton is a Building and Construction Industry professional with formal tertiary qualifications in management and training.