Unit of competency details

CHCPR509A - Gather, interpret and use information about children (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by CHCECE023 - Analyse information to inform learningThis version was released in CHC Community Services Training Package release 1.0 and meets the requirements of the New Standards for Training Packages. Significant changes to elements and performance criteria. New evidence requirements for assessment, including volume and frequency requirements. 30/Jun/2013
Supersedes CHCPR9C - Document, interpret and use information about childrenMinor change to competency outcome 24/Mar/2011

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 25/Mar/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 090503 Children’s Services  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 090503 Children’s Services  02/Feb/2009 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor


This unit describes the knowledge and skills required to collect high quality information on children to assist in program planning

Application of the Unit


This unit may apply to working with children in a range of community service contexts

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not Applicable


Not Applicable

Employability Skills Information

Employability Skills 

This unit contains Employability Skills

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements define the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

The Performance Criteria specify the level of performance required to demonstrate achievement of the Element. Terms in italics are elaborated in the Range Statement.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Gather and document detailed information about the child

1.1 Gather information and observations according to a child's emerging skills

1.2 Gather detailed information about children and document using a variety of appropriate methods

1.3 Ensure information and observations collected are valid, representative, significant and relevant

1.4 Make series of observations to address all aspects of development over a period of time and in a variety of situations

1.5 Consult colleagues, families and others in a sensitive manner

2. Monitor children's developmental progress and develop understanding of individual children

2.1 Use observations and information to assess and monitor child's play preferences, social interactions, communication and language, thinking styles, physical abilities and emotional status

2.2 Interpret information and observations to identify individual emerging skills, capabilities , potential, interests, preferences of child to guide program strategies to foster development

2.3 Monitor and interpret behaviour that is out of character for an individual child and respond appropriately

2.4 Demonstrate understanding and application of inclusive principles in interpreting observations

3. Use information from observations with others

3.1 Demonstrate quality observation practices to other workers

3.2 Provide information to others to inform program planning, support children's play and evaluate programs

3.3 Use records of observations to provide feedback to children about their skills and competence and promote remembering

3.4 Make time available to share information with parents

3.5 Follow up any concerns regarding child's development with appropriate persons/services

4. Use information to plan the program

4.1 Use information to consider all aspects of child's development and cater appropriately within the program

4.2 Use the information to plan opportunities and experiences to foster development of the child

5. Design observation systems with others

5.1 Develop systematic ways of observing children to ensure all children are included

5.2 Develop systematic ways of observing children to ensure that all interpretations of behaviour can be clearly linked to evidence

5.3 Clearly link observation systems developed to program planning and evaluation processes

5.4 Implement processes to ensure appropriate access by others to observation information

Required Skills and Knowledge


This describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit.

Essential knowledge :

The candidate must be able to demonstrate essential knowledge required to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

These include knowledge of:

  • How the observer influences interaction and behaviour
  • Styles of thinking
  • Developmental knowledge
  • Understanding different cultures
  • Developmental norms at different ages/stages
  • Organisation standards, policies and procedures
  • Regulatory and legislative requirements

Essential skills :

It is critical that the candidate demonstrate the ability to:

  • Gather information from a variety of sources and observe and interpret children's behaviour
  • Monitor and assess children's development and learning and use information to inform program planning
  • Use relevant technology safely and effectively

In addition, the candidate must be able to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

These include the ability to:

  • Demonstrate application of skills in:
  • communication skills
  • reporting
  • interpersonal interaction
  • planning
  • safe and effective use of relevant technology

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the Performance Criteria, Required Skills and Knowledge, the Range Statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate this unit of competency :

  • The individual being assessed must provide evidence of specified essential knowledge as well as skills
  • This unit could be assessed either on the job or off the job through an appropriate workplace simulation for a range of age groups, and a range of conditions, over a number of assessment situations

Access and equity considerations :

  • All workers in community services should be aware of access, equity and human rights issues in relation to their own area of work
  • All workers should develop their ability to work in a culturally diverse environment
  • In recognition of particular issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, workers should be aware of cultural, historical and current issues impacting on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Assessors and trainers must take into account relevant access and equity issues, in particular relating to factors impacting on Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and communities

Context of and specific resources for assessment :

  • This unit can be assessed independently, however holistic assessment practice with other community services units of competency is encouraged
  • Assessment requires access to a range of opportunities defined in the Range Statement, including:
  • a childcare workplace
  • children's services, resources and equipment
  • the local environment

Method of assessment :

  • In cases where the learner does not have the opportunity to cover all relevant aspects in the work environment, the remainder should be assessed through realistic simulations, projects, previous relevant experience or oral questioning on 'What if?' scenarios
  • Assessment of this unit of competence will usually include observation of processes and procedures, oral and/or written questioning on Essential knowledge and skills and consideration of required attitudes
  • Where performance is not directly observed and/or is required to be demonstrated over a 'period of time' and/or in a 'number of locations', any evidence should be authenticated by colleagues, supervisors, clients or other appropriate persons

Range Statement


The Range Statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Add any essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts.

Specific purposes or needs for observation include :

  • Planning experiences for the child
  • To identify the child's capabilities
  • To identify the child's interests and needs
  • To monitor uncharacteristic or atypical aspects of development

Capabilities of a child will include :

  • Physical capabilities
  • Emotional capabilities
  • Cognitive capabilities
  • Social capabilities
  • Creative capabilities
  • Language capabilities
  • Spiritual and moral aspects

Methods of documenting information may include :

  • Written
  • Photography
  • Audio and video recordings

Methods of gathering may information , include :

  • Observing while participating with children in an experience
  • Narrative methods
  • Sampling methods
  • Chart methods
  • Gathering information about the child from other workers
  • Asking family members
  • Discussions with other children
  • Collecting samples of children's work
  • Observing children at play, during care routines and social interactions
  • Directly involving the child in the process

Unit Sector(s)

Not Applicable