- Do I need to live in Australia to do the course?
- Are there any pre-requisites?
- What equipment and facilities do I need?
- Are there any other requirements to gain the qualification?
- Can I get insurance?
- How can you learn the practical things online?
- What if I rather do the work with an assessor face to face?
- How long does the course take?
- I am experienced, do I still need to do the whole course?
- If I have problems who will help me?
- How does the video assessment work?
As the course is delivered online, you can do this course anywhere any time. You need to have a good internet connection. The texts can be downloaded and printed out, so you can study and prepare your theory assessments off line, and feed them into the computer when you can.
Of course if you want to teach and help other people about horses and riding, one assumes that you already have a certain amount of experience with horses (If not, we recommend the personal development courses to increase your knowledge). The more you know, the faster you can complete the qualification. We recommend that students start with the Level I course, as this includes all basic knowledge. Mature age students with many years of horse and teaching experience canstart with the Level II.
03. What equipment and facilities do I need?
You need access to horse(s) and equipment, and an equestrian facility and riders to teach. Many students have achieved their qualifications using ridingschool horses or a suitable horse owned by a friend.
The facilities that you use may be your own tie up area and arena, a ridingschool, the local pony club grounds or a private facility that you can hire. As long as they are safe and the work area is clearly marked and fenced.
The riders that you use for the teaching tasks may be your own kids, neighbours, pony club riders, fellow students or a combination of all. In the Level I we are looking at teaching beginners, so if you are using riders who are past the beginner stage, you need to ask them to behave and pretend to be a beginner, so you can still show off your teaching skills.
04. Are there any other requirements to gain the qualification?
05. Can I get insurance?
Yes, we are not the insurance brokers, but have done the legwork on behalf of our students and graduates and have laid the contacts and negotiated with several Australia-based reputable insurance companies. They know the quality of our training and are in principle prepared to insure you when you have completed the theory component of the course, and are aware of risk management and risk minimisation procedures. Of course you will need to produce a full certificate a year later when the insurance is ready for renewal again.
The insurance companies will ask you to fill out a form, detailing what business you have or plan to have and what income you project. The cost of the insurance differs with each company and set of circumstances. It is based on your income or number of riders per year. One insurer starts from approx $500 ( excl. stamp duty). This is for an instructor who just coaches and goes to people’s places up to about 20 lessons per week. If you run a centre with school horses on your property the premium increases (fairly dramatically), as of course the public liability risk increases. Some people on the land may have a farm pack insurance, which covers their public liability, so if you have one of those, the premium could go down again to just covering the lessons. One insurer includes the option of agistment of horses on your property and therefore teaching others on your property and their premiums are quoted as starting from $1300. There is usually an option to pay this on a monthly basis, instead of all at once, which helps people who are starting up.
The two priorities we have stressed with these insurers, and what they have accepted, are that
a) when you start off you may not make a lot of money, so therefore premiums should start relatively low
b) the insurance has no restrictions such as compulsory memberships of other sporting bodies for you and your clients and you should be able to teach "anybody". (i.e. "the children down the road" and "the lady who always wanted to learn to ride"). These would most of the time be the most common type of riders you would teach (and the most plentiful!).
One of the other things we always explain to our students is, that although insurance seems like an expensive item, it needs to be calculated into your fee structure. Everything that we do or buy in life has an insurance premium built into it. The cost of a loaf of bread we buy at Woolworths includes the risk that I slip in the store and sue them. So add an insurance portion to your fees by dividing the cost of insurance over the number of lessons you give in a year or if you pay per month, on average during each month. ( I had a student who paid per month, and she explained: “The insurance costs me $120 per month. This means that I have to do two lesson each month, to pay for the insurance, and the rest of the money is mine.” This is of course a slightly simplistic accountancy principle, but it puts the insurance cost somewhat into perspective.)
06. How can you learn the practical online?
07. What if I rather do the work with an assessor face to face?
We have a network of approved assessors around Australia. You can do an assessor search on our home page by state, and see if there are any assessors close to you. If you opt for one of those assessors, then the cost of the practical assessment is additional, and you pay the assessor direct. You can search for an assessor here.
08. How long does the course take?
The course is basically self-paced. So you can enrol any time and do the work when it suits you. Students have one year to complete the course. However, at times life presents students with other priorities and may have to postpone their studies. In that case do not worry, we can extend the study time by charging a nominal administration fee of $ 110.00 so you do not lose your completed units.
09. I am experienced, do I still need to do the whole course?
The cost of the course is so low, that it is very affordable to get all the information and texts. This sets you up with the required knowledge and you don’t accidentally miss out on anything. If you can document your experience with certificates, evidence, references, in some cases you can approach your tutor to discuss receiving RPL for some of the practical components.
10. If I have problems who will help me?
11. How does the video assessment work?
The videos you produce can be uploaded to the website in your student area. Make sure that you compress the videos to mp4 format or they will be too large to upload. Alternatively, you can put the video on a USB stick or make a DVD and send it to your tutor for assessment.
Before you set out to be filmed:
- Always run through the scenario and practice before you actually film. You want to show yourself off to your best advantage. Make sure that your students know beforehand what is expected of them, or that you have all the required equipment ready.
- Practice any teaching task a few times before filming
- Identify yourself, we need to see your face and some proof of identity, especially the first time you send a video
- Make sure that we can hear you. Ideally you have a small microphone attached to you, like on TV. If you do not have this, make sure you face the camera. Stop and start the task and filming if necessary , to make sure you are in the right position (don’t film if it is very windy /lots of traffic etc.).
- State the task you wish to have assessed. Explain what you are doing as you perform the task if it is a horse care task or provide a lessonplan if it is a lesson. Provide a critique of your own performance on paper if you wish. Sometimes minor things are not exactly as you want in hindsight, and pointing this out, shows us you do know.
- Flat riding must be done in an area with letters, so we can see the dimensionsof the figures you ride. Make up a plan or list before hand (warm up, 20 m circle from A, lengthening and shortening reins etc.) as you work through the riding tasks in the Assessment Guide. Ask the camera person to call out the movement you are going to ride, or provide subtitles.
Good preparation of the tasks produces a better success rate and avoids disappointment. We provide feedback after watch