student handbook



Academic Transcript

An official record of a student’s achievement with a list of Units of Competency (UoC) from a Nationally Recognised Training qualification.


An assessment is a piece of work that is submitted by the student that is assessed and is evidence towards competency.


Case Study

A case study is an indepth discussion on your involvement in a specific situation. They are most often used as an assessment method that brings in all you have learnt and see you apply it to a real world situation.


Collusion is a form of plagiarism. It refers to the unauthorised collaboration with another person to write the assessment and then call it all your own work. Collusion is a breach of a student conduct policy. All work submitted in any form should be strictly your own and must be in your own words.


Competency is gained when a student is assessed as being able to demonstrate consistent application of knowledge and skills to the standard of performance required. Competency is required to be able to work in the workplace AND to have your qualification issued.

Competency Conversations

In some cases an Educator will arrange a time to contact a student in order to have a discussion regarding assessment content. After having a discussion, the Educator can assess if the student has a competent understanding of the topic.

Continuing Education (CE)

This is education you undertake outside your qualification that adds to your own professional development. A variety of formats such as webinars, seminars, conferences, short courses, and in house training can count as CE.

Course Extension

At the time of enrolment, a course end date is provided. A student may make arrangements to extend past this date by requesting this via student assist. The length of possible extension will depend on the payment method and student progress and active involvement.

Credit / Credit Transfer

A credit transfer is assigned when you already hold a unit of competency from a previous course. A credit can only be awarded if it is the same unit or is deemed equivalent by the training package. Some units are similar but not equivalent, so they cannot be a transfer.


Any evidence submitted is required to be ‘current’. Currency relates to the age of evidence presented – if you did something 10 years ago, it’s likely not current. If you did it 3 years ago, it is. If you are submitting evidence of prior learning, this needs to demonstrate competency in current performance.

When requesting a clinic mentors qualification, this needs to be current or your mentor will need to provide further evidence of continued education to demonstrate currency within the industry.


Educator & Assessor

Educators/Assessors hold a Certificate IV in Training & Assessment AND related qualifications to the field they are assessing. They are responsible for assessing your work and providing tutorial support.


Feedback Sheets / Forms

Feedback forms are completed by an assessor to provide feedback for your assessments. The forms will highlight areas that students have gained competency as well as the areas that may need further information to gain competency. Individual comments are provided to help point students in the right direction.



A guide book detailing important information. ACVN has handbooks for students, courses and workplace mentors. They are all available in the Help Box.



A period of time in which a student has not been actively logging in to the learning centre or submitting work. Familiarise yourself with our inactivity policy in the handbook.


Each student enrolled in a nationally recognised qualification is required to complete an induction before commencing training. Induction covers information on studying with VNS and the responsibilities and expectations of students.


Key Skills

These are reports from your supervisor that are used as evidence to demonstrate your ability to perform tasks in the workplace (Veterinary clinic, boarding facility etc.) as per the workplace policies and procedures.


Learning Activity

These are quizzes completed in the learning centre that are designed to test your knowledge of topics and to prepare you for your assessments. These are compulsory to complete but do not affect your grade or ability to gain competency. They provide us, and you, with feedback on your learning.

Learning Centre

The learning centre is where you will access your online subject areas, extra resources such as videos and presentations and where you will upload your assessments and receive feedback for your Educators.

Learner’s Guide

Each subject has a printed learner’s guide that contains all your learning resources, worksheets to help you learn, and your assessment instructions. Each student is sent a folder made up of individual learners guides for their enrolled subjects. These are continuously being reviewed and updated to provide you with the most current, gold standard of education.

Live Chat

When you are logged into your learning centre, you will see an option for Live Chat. This is a student assist option that provides you with the opportunity to speak directly with an Educator via a messenger type service. Live Chat is designed for quick questions that will take less than 5 minutes to discuss. For complicated or in-depth content related question, it is best to email or call student assist.


LLN is an acronym for Language, Literacy and Numeracy. During your induction you are required to complete an LLN quiz.You cannot fail this quiz, but if you score below 70% an Educator may contact you to discuss the possibility of gaining extra, external support in these areas in order to meet the LLN requirements for your enrolled course.



A mentor is a suitably qualified employee within the workplace, approved by VNS, that can assist you in the workplace and sign your key skills and hours.

Mentor Registration Approval

Before you can commence placement, a suitably qualified employee will need be approved to act as your mentor. This approval process is in place to meet government auditing requirements and to ensure that each mentor has the current skills and knowledge required to assess VNS students.


Nationally Recognised Training (NRT)

Only Registered Training Organisations can deliver Nationally Recognised Training and issue a nationally recognised qualification or statement of attainment.


Placement / Internships

This refers to the practical component of your course. You will complete your placement or internship (depending on your course enrolment) and complete the appropriate practical skills logs within a workplace that has been approved by VNS. Employed students can complete the practical requirements at their workplace.


Plagiarism is the act of using someone else’s work and handing it in as your own. It may be an entire assessment or a few paragraphs. All your work must be in your own words and referenced. Just referencing alone does not mean your text is not plagiarised.

Practical Skills Lab

Our practical skills laboratory is located in our Melbourne office. Students can schedule time in the lab by contacting student assist. This will provide students the opportunity to help gain various practical skills that they may not necessarily be getting during their placement or to practice a skill area that may require more practice.



Queensland Agricultural Training College.
QATC are the Registered Training Organisation for our some of our pre 2019 students.


When all requirements of a course are completed and all units of competency have been deemed competent, a qualification will be awarded to the student. Qualifications are issued for nationally recognised training only.



Referencing is where you acknowledge the source of the information you used in your answer.

Reattempt (Third Attempt)

A third attempt at an assessment which allows you to make minor edits to an assessment you have almost passed. Strict criteria apply to eligibility and you must pay an additional fee. Also called third attempt.


A second attempt at an assessment which allows you to add in more detail or missed points from your original attempt – giving you a chance to demonstrate competency.


Recognition of prior learning (RPL) is applied when your industry knowledge and skills equal those of somebody who has completed the normal study course. This includes a working knowledge of terminology and practical skill areas across the professional area. In most cases you will require approximately five years experience in the industry to have the appropriate level of knowledge and skills to complete the RPL process successfully.To provide evidence for RPL, a student is required to present a variation of evidence across multiple formats. This includes video evidence of you completing specific tasks.


Registered Training Organisation. A training organisation is required to be registered to allow the delivery of Nationally recognised Training. The RTO will issue your qualification or statement of attainment. VNS trains on their behalf.


Statement of Attainment

An official report issued from an RTO listing the Units of Competency that have been awarded as “competent” or “not competent” where the student has not completed an entire qualification.

Student Declaration

This is a form that needs to be completed, signed and returned to VNS as part of your induction process. This form is an agreement confirming that you understand your requirements as a student. The option to provide third party access is also on this form.


We deliver your course divided up into subjects which together cover all the UoCs necessary for you to have your qualification issued. A subject may cover one, multiple or parts of a UoC.


Training Package

Training packages are developed by the Industry Skills Council to meet the training needs of an industry. The training package contains the details of the UoCs and rules for delivering a qualification. It does not contain the course material you study – this is designed by the individual training provider.


Unit Of Competency (UoC)

A UoC details the minimum level of skill and knowledge required by a student to be deemed competent by an assessor. Each qualification is made up of set of UoCs and these guide us in what we include in the course, and what we must collect as evidence towards your competency.


Urkund, now called Ouriginal, is the plagiarism checker we utilise. All assessments that are uploaded will automatically be scanned through this software and provided with a plagiarism percentage. Ouriginal matches results with the learners guide, the Internet, previously submitted assessments and other student’s assessments.


University of Queensland.
UQ are the Registered Training Organisation for our 2019+ students.



Withdrawal is where you are removed from the course before completion and no longer an active student. This can be by student request after completing a withdrawal form or VNS may withdraw a student for inactivity, breach of student conduct, multiple plagiarism warnings or course payment default.

Workplace Approval

Before you can commence placement the chosen workplace must be approved. This approval process is in place to meet government auditing requirements and to ensure that each student will have access to the required equipment that is needed to gain practical skills competency.


Practical workshops are run by VNS staff members to help you gain additional specialised skills. These workshops are run in various location throughout Australia, with more locations being added frequently.