Applying for Course Exemption

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Find all the FAQ's and need to knows on how to apply for coaching course exemptions below. 

Apply for Exemption

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is Exemption?
  • Exemption is a term covering Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer (CT) in education courses. 

  • What is the difference between Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit transfer (CT)?
  • These two types of exemption differ based on what type of evidence you have.

    You can apply for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) if you can demonstrate your previous study, work history and / or life experiences match one or more of the units in the course you are wanting to complete. You must be able to demonstrate that you have achieved the skills and knowledge equivalent to all the learning outcomes of the unit/s.  Evidence demonstrating these achievements should be through a portfolio of evidence.

    You can apply for Credit Transfer (CT) if you have successful completed the unit/s previously, or successfully completed a unit with the equivalent curriculum content, learning outcomes and assessments, or if you have successfully completed a combination of units that collectively cover the content and learning outcomes of the unit/s for which you are seeking exemption.

  • How do I know if I can apply for RPL or CT?
  • You need to have an outline of the course content and the details of the learning outcomes which make up the unit/s.

    You should think carefully about the evidence you have and how it matches the criteria. This evidence will be used to assess the skills and knowledge required for the unit/s.

  • What are the benefits of applying for RPL or CT?
  • If you are successful in your application, you can save yourself time because you will not have to complete all the units in your course.

    It can save you money because it may cost less than full enrolment in the course.

  • Does it cost anything to apply for RPL or CT?
  • Yes. Assessments for exemption are charged based on a percentage of the individual module/course fee. You pay for the number of modules you are applying to have assessed, however there is a cap on the fee you will pay if applying for exemption for the full course.

    The assessment process is very thorough and is conducted by a qualified assessor. This takes time and expertise. While there is a cost, the assessment process can save you time in not having to complete some or all the course units.

    Note: there is no refund given on fees if your application is successful. If you are unsuccessful and need to enrol in the unit, you will receive credit towards enrolment in that unit to the value of the fee paid for the assessment of that unit.

  • What kind of evidence can I use?
  • Previous study can contribute to your application or you may have experience gained at your current or previous job. If you do any relevant volunteer work in the community, this can also be submitted as evidence.

    The exemption application process is an assessment of the skills and knowledge you have gained, matched against the learning outcomes for the unit/s you are applying for.

    It is important the evidence you submit is relevant and matches the units for which you are applying for exemption.

  • What do I need to submit as evidence?
  • Evidence can be submitted in various formats but needs to be documented clearly outlining the skills and experiences being claimed. Some examples of the things you can submit are:

    ·       Training / qualification certificates

    ·       Position description

    ·       Reference from a workplace

    ·       Examples of work you have produced

    ·       Minutes of meetings you have run or organised

    ·       Awards or certificates of merit

  • How much exemption can I apply for?
  • For the Development Course, assessment is available for the entire course only. Applications for assessment for only part of the course will not be accepted. You must be able to show evidence of meeting all the learning outcomes for all units within the full course.

    For the Advanced Course and Performance Course, the number and specific units you can apply for depend on the course level you’re applying for and your entry point, taking into account your previous education and industry experience.

    View the application criteria for the Advanced and Performance Courses here.

  • International coaches
  • International coaches may apply for RPL or CT by following the same process.

  • Organising and labelling evidence
  • For each item of evidence, you need to work out which of the learning outcomes it relates to. This should be indicated in the appropriate place on the application, as well as on the evidence. 

    For some items of evidence, it may be appropriate to indicate which part of the item is relevant to which learning outcome.  Make sure that you have clear references in each of your applications to any relevant evidence, so that assessors can easily locate it.

    If you don’t have primary evidence (certificates, letters, examples of sessions etc) that you can submit to substantiate your claim but consider that you could demonstrate your competence to assessor/s, please make a note to that effect.

  • How will I be notified of the assessment outcome?
  • You will be advised in writing of the outcome of your application.

    If your application is successful, you will be granted exemption from those units. You will still need to complete any remaining units in the relevant course to successfully complete the course.

    If your application is unsuccessful, you will need to enrol in the full course and complete all requirements.

  • Is there an appeal process?
  • If you do not agree with the outcome of your exemption application you may contact Swimming Australia, and a representative will try to resolve any issues you may have. If a suitable resolution cannot be found, you can submit a written appeal. An independent panel will review written appeals. The panel's decision is final.


    For more details on the appeals process, please click here.

  • What happens to my accreditation if my application is unsuccessful?
  • If your application is unsuccessful, you will need to complete all units of the course to achieve course completion and be eligible for Swimming Australia coach accreditation at that level.

    You will need to enrol in and pay for the entire course or the units you were unsuccessful in being granted exemption.

    If your application is unsuccessful, you will receive a voucher to the value of the application fee you’ve paid for those units. You can use this voucher against the cost of enrolling in the course / unit.

  • Where can I get more information?
  • To find out more about how to apply for exemption, please email 

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