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Applying for assessor accreditation

 

Accredited assessor application process

To become an accredited assessor, you require specific academic qualifications and experience, and must complete accredited assessor training. 

Academic qualifications 

To become an accredited assessor, you require:

  • relevant tertiary education in the natural sciences, including subjects relating to the observation and description of terrestrial biodiversity and landforms
  • any other qualifications that the department’s Environment Agency Head deems relevant to exercising the role’s functions.

Relevant work experience

You must be able to demonstrate recent relevant work experience in environmental science, management or impacts assessment, or preparation of conservation management plans.

Your relevant work experience must include:

  • conducting plant and animal surveys
  • identifying plant community types
  • identifying ecological communities.

You must have:

  • at least 3 years of experience within the last 7 years if you hold relevant academic qualifications, or
  • in any other case, at least 5 years of experience, of which 2 were gained within the last 7 years.

Demonstration of technical skills

The Biodiversity Assessment Method requires an assessor to have a strong focus on botanical skills involving plots, quadrats and transects to sample species composition. This sampling is used to identify plant community types and ecological communities.

Assessor applicants should be aiming to demonstrate a reasonable level of recent relevant field work experience. 

As a guide, approximately 50 days (cumulatively) over the last 3 years of plant-based field work, involving plots, quadrats and transects to sample species composition, are considered reasonable. This is a guide only, and each application is considered individually and on its merits against the criteria. The figure is based on experience of previous assessors.

Continuing professional development

There are continuing professional development requirements to carry out a similar level of field work to maintain your botanical skills after accreditation. 

Assessor accreditation training

To become an accredited assessor to apply the Biodiversity Assessment Method, you must complete the accredited assessor training course before you can apply for accreditation. This training is competency-based, requiring you to demonstrate:

  • knowledge of the Biodiversity Offsets Scheme
  • competency in the use of the Biodiversity Assessment Method, including allocating plant community types and threatened ecological communities based on field data collection
  • competency in using the Biodiversity Assessment Method Calculator.

Registering for the course

There are 2 parts to the training course. When registering, you commit to both parts:

  • Part 1: Twelve eLearning modules and associated assessment tasks – completed within 2 months of enrolment.
  • Part 2: A 3-day webinar, a compulsory one-day field day (own transport required), and assessment tasks to be finished shortly after the course (dates provided below).

Fees and charges

  • Part 1: approximately $589.60 (indexed annually, includes GST) payable to Greencap, our training partner.
  • Part 2: approximately $1,608 (indexed annually) payable to the department. 

Registration steps

Our current courses are now full

If you wish to register your interest in training please email [email protected]

If you have questions about assessor accreditation training, please contact us at [email protected].

Part 2 training sessions

May 2024 training dates – fully booked

  • Day 1: Webinar, Monday 13 May
  • Day 2: Field day (Newcastle), Tuesday 14 May

Note: Wednesday 15 May requires no attendance

  • Day 3: Webinar, Thursday 16 May
  • Day 4: Webinar, Friday 17 May

Assessment tasks due: 26 May 2024

July 2024 training dates – fully booked

  • Day 1: Webinar, Monday 15 July
  • Day 2: Field day (Sydney), Tuesday 16 July

Note: Wednesday 17 July requires no attendance

  • Day 3: Webinar, Thursday 18 July
  • Day 4: Webinar, Friday 19 July

Assessment tasks due date: 28 July 2024

Applying for assessor accreditation

To apply for Biodiversity Assessment Method accreditation, you must:

  • successfully complete the accredited assessor training course 
  • demonstrate the necessary knowledge, skills, experience, academic qualifications and relevant work experience.

On successfully completing the training, you will receive an email outlining the process of how to apply for accreditation. 

Your application must be submitted within 6 months of training completion via the Biodiversity Assessor Accreditation System. 

How to apply for accreditation

Download the application form and submit the following through the Biodiversity Assessor Accreditation System. The form has 6 parts and you must complete them all:

  1. Applicant details  
  2. Fit and proper person declaration
  3. Biodiversity Assessment Method Assessor Code of Conduct
  4. Biodiversity Assessment Method Assessor Experience and Qualification Report
  5. Certified copies of academic transcripts
  6. 2 recent Biodiversity Assessment Method assessor referee reports 

You can track your application status through the Biodiversity Assessor Accreditation System portal.

Download the application form

Fees

An accreditation application fee must be paid when you submit your application.

Accreditation can be varied, cancelled or suspended

The accreditation scheme also allows the department to audit Biodiversity Assessment Reports and review application of the Biodiversity Assessment Method by accredited assessors. 

For example, we may cancel or suspend accreditation where an audit establishes a failure to comply with the requirements of the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (NSW), the Biodiversity Conservation Regulation 2017 or the Biodiversity Assessment Method.