Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care

Course Reference


Maximum 24 months

Delivery Method

Flexible including practical work placement and block training

Enrolment Method
Open enrolment

Prospective Career Roles

Aboriginal Health Worker

Assessment Methods

Short answer questions
Case studies
Workplace portfolio
Research reports
Work placement
Practical Log Book


The role of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers (ATSIHWs) is crucial to improving health outcomes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. They play a vital role in the primary health care workforce, providing practical and primary care for individuals, families and community groups.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers across Australia work in a variety of environments. While a large majority are employed in Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (ACCHOs)
or the Government Health Sector, many also work within mainstream services such as general practices and other non-government organisations.

Projected five year employment growth to November 2018 is 12.2%. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker roles exist in metropolitan, regional and remote.

Course Information

Delivery Method

The Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care is delivered through a blended delivery method. Students may need to undertake block training as part of their qualification.  Students will undertake both theoretical and practical assessment.

Theoretical assessments are to be completed in a normal word document attached to an e-mail and sent directly to your trainer for making.  The practical assessment will take place through practical work placement which will provide you with the necessary practical skills and workplace experience.

Demonstration of performance will be provided through a practical logbook to ensure students are fully equipped to enter the workforce after the completion of the qualification.

Practical Work Placement

Duration:  The practical work placement duration is determined by the activities performed however, it is anticipated that a minimum of 250 hours is required to cover the practical component of the course.  Students are required to complete a practical log book during their work placement.  The log book requires student to complete the practical activities on a number of occasions to demonstrate consistency of performance.

Work placement outline

Practical work placement is compulsory for the Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care qualification.

Health Industry Training recognises that an important part of undertaking a qualification in health or community services is the practical component of the course. Work placement provides students with an avenue to apply practical skills in a ‘real life’ environment where you are able to practice the skills and knowledge you have learnt during the course.

Health Industry Training will work with you to find a suitable organisation for your work placement.  As a student it is important for you to discuss work placement opportunities with local organisations.  Once you have sourced a relevant host employer, Health Industry Training will be responsible for contacting them on your behalf to discuss work placement requirements.


Health Industry Training provides insurance to all students undertaking work placement as part of their qualification. Insurance covers Public Liability and Volunteer Workers insurance.


As a student you must ensure you have completed the necessary ‘Prior to practical work placement’ activities listed below before practical work placement can commence.

  • National Criminal History Clearance
  • Student Disclosure Statement
  • Working with Children blue card

Assessment Methods

Health Industry Training uses a range of assessment methods to ensure sufficient evidence can be gathered to demonstrate you can perform the tasks against the specified criteria. Assessment methods can include:

  • Short answer questions
  • Projects
  • Case studies
  • Scenarios
  • Reports
  • Workplace portfolios
  • Work placement logbook
  • Research reports
  • Presentations

Recognition of Prior Learning

Many of our students already have a high level of skills, knowledge and expertise that can be recognised through a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) process.

RPL takes into account any previous formal study, work and life experience and then assesses this against the elements of competency to determine if you can receive credit toward a qualification. Students seeking recognition can apply for RPL on enrolment into a qualification or throughout the duration of their study.

Credit Transfer

If you have completed a unit of competency within your intended qualification with another Registered Training Organisation (RTO) you may be able to apply for a credit transfer or exemption. A copy of the original transcript must be provided when applying for a credit transfer.

Admission Requirements

Entry Requirements

To enrol in the Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strat Islander Primary Health Care students must:

provide Health Industry Training with their Unique Student Identifier number; and

complete the Practical work placement pre-requirements prior to practical placement.

IT Requirements

To complete the course you will need access to a computer and the Internet.

In addition you will need basic computer skills to conduct research on your current topics and complete your assessments. In particular, you will need skills in word processing and PowerPoint presentations.

Minimum Age Requirements

The minimum age for this course is 16 years old.  If you are under 18 years of age your enrolment form must be signed by a parent or guardian.

Literacy, Language, Numeracy (LLN) Requirements

Students must have an adequate level of Language, Literacy and Numeracy skills (LLN).  Entry into the course requires English proficiency to Year 10 level or equivalent. Students are able to test their LLN skills by completing an appropriate level LLN test by emailing info@healthindustrytraining.org.  For additional information and support contact the Reading Writing Hotline at www.readingwritinghotline.edu.au


Queensland residents only

This course if available through the Australian Apprenticeship Scheme. The Australian Apprenticeships Scheme is government funded training available for school-based students, new and existing employees. The traineeship program addresses skills needs by making government funding available to Health Industry Training to deliver the training. Additional incentives for employers are also available to provide students with paid work for the duration of the traineeship.  There are no costs to the student.

Certificate 3 Guarantee: Health Industry Training is proud to be a pre-qualified supplier for the Queensland Government, under the Certificate 3 Guarantee. To be eligible for the Certificate 3 Guarantee, participants must not hold or be undertaking a Certificate III qualification. Qualifications undertaken at school do not affect eligibility. The cost for students is $5/unit or $10/unit if paid by a third party.


To assist students who are not eligible for funding, Health Industry Training offers financial assistance to students by allowing students to either:

  • pay the cost of the course in full and receive a 10% discount on the full cost of the course; or
  • take advantage of our affordable payment plan options (weekly, fortnightly or monthly instalments) (see enrolment form for additional information)

Student Support

Throughout your course with Health Industry Training, you will be provided with a range of support services depending on your individual needs. 

One-on-one trainer support: You will be provided with a trainer that has extensive experience and expertise in the course content and the industry sector. Our professional trainers are there to ensure you have a successful learning journey where you can contact them via phone or email.

In addition to your trainer, the administration team can provide you with support including your enrolment, changes to contact details or study plan, assisting with accessing your online assessment system, progress report and any issues you may encounter throughout your course.

Peer support

Health Industry Training appreciates that distance/online learning can be an isolated experience for some students.  To assist with isolation all students have the option to be part of a Facebook peer support group. Peer support groups can be a positive experience where you can study with like-minded people, ask questions relating to your course and build friendships.

Financial support

The Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care is Austudy / Abstudy approved. Please contact your local Centrelink office for eligibility requirements and application.

Course Structure

The Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care has been packaged to include:

17 units are required for award of this qualification including:

  • 12 core units
  • 5 elective units

The course combines theoretical and practical work placement experience.  The theoretical component of the course provides the student with the relevant knowledge required to work in the primary health care sector.

The practical placement experience provides students with the practical knowledge and skills for students to work in a practical setting on completion of the qualification.

To view a list of the units of competencies offered by Health Industry Training, click on the ‘Download Course Outline’ button on the left hand side of this page.