Unit of competency details

SIHHHSC404A - Perform trichological assessments (Release 2)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by SHBHTRI002 - Conduct trichological assessmentsNot Equivalent • Unit updated to meet the Standards for Training Packages. • Titled changed.• Unit competency field changed to Trichology.• Incorporates relevant skills and knowledge from deleted units: o SIHHHSC301A Apply the principles of hairdressing science o SIHHHSC403A Apply knowledge of hair and scalp problems to trichological consultations o SIHHHSC405A Apply the principles of nutrition. 30/Mar/2016
Supersedes and is equivalent to WRHHS404A - Perform trichological assessmentsUpdated and equivalent to WRHHS404A 19/Jul/2011

ReleaseRelease date
2 (this release) 19/Aug/2013
(View details for release 1) 20/Jul/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110303 Hairdressing 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110303 Hairdressing 18/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

The release details of this endorsed unit of competency are set out in the table below. The latest information is at the top.




Editorial corrections. Competency field added.


Initial release.

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to interact with and examine the client’s hair and scalp to assess client needs.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to senior hairdressers in salon environments, who assess client’s hair and scalp conditions and provide advice that may result in referral to another professional, or the development of therapeutic approaches to identified problems or no further treatment.

A person undertaking this role applies discretion and judgement, accepts responsibility for outcomes of own work and provides technical leadership in the salon team.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.



Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Not applicable.

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance Criteria 

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

1. Consult and examine client.

1.1. Establish rapport with client  and obtain relevant information  to determine expectations and requirements.

1.2. Question clients to obtain and record relevant client details and history .

1.3. Conduct physical and visual examination of the hair and scalp condition, according to salon procedures .

1.4. Determine need for a microscopic analysis of sample hairs is determined and explain to client where required.

1.5. Gather hair samples from appropriate areas of the scalp without causing damage to the samples.

1.6. Mount hair samples on microscopic slide and examine, interpret and record observations.

2. Assess the problem.

2.1. Organise and analyse information collected from the physical and visual examination and microscopic analysis.

2.2. Identify abnormal hair and scalp conditions  and counsel client regarding remedial action.

2.3. Assess trichological problems  and their causes, based on the client examination.

3. Communicate the assessment.

3.1. Explain consultation assessment to client and answer questions with clarity.

3.2. Discuss treatment options and costs and confirm a treatment program with client where indicated by the assessment outcomes.

3.3. Organise referral to other professionals  where indicated by the assessment outcomes.

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication skills to:
  • conduct client consultation, including:
  • asking questions to establish client concerns and requirements
  • discuss treatment options
  • confirm a treatment program
  • suggest referral to other professionals
  • technical skills to:
  • observe and interpret microscopic examination of sample hairs
  • identify abnormal hair and scalp conditions
  • plan remedial treatments
  • literacy skills to:
  • interpret and record relevant client history
  • interpret trichological product information when planning treatments
  • numeracy skills to interpret and record results of physical and visual examinations

Required knowledge 

  • relevant health regulations
  • contraindications to trichological treatments
  • adverse effects of previous treatments on the hair and scalp
  • the appearance of abnormal hair and scalp conditions
  • the salon range of trichological products, including:
  • composition
  • effects
  • benefits

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

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

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • application of client assessments based on examination and microscopic analysis
  • accurate, relevant and well-organised records of client information that can be readily interpreted by other professionals
  • sensitive and clear communication of client diagnosis and options.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure access to:

  • a salon or a simulated salon environment that includes a range of work situations such as client interruptions and involvement in other related activities normally expected in the salon
  • fully equipped workstation which includes as minimum:
  • an adjustable client chair
  • clean client gown or wrap
  • a plentiful supply of clean towels
  • relevant documentation, such as:
  • relevant health regulations
  • salon procedures
  • product information
  • client
  • a range of clients with different hair and scalp conditions
  • a professional hair and scalp trichological treatments products range.

For further guidance on the use of an appropriate simulated environment, refer to the Assessment Guidelines in this Training Package.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • direct observation of the learner performing trichological consultations
  • written or verbal questions appropriate to the language and literacy level of the learner to test knowledge which may include:
  • relevant health regulations
  • contraindications to trichological treatments
  • adverse effects of previous treatments on the hair and scalp
  • the appearance of abnormal hair and scalp conditions
  • of the salon range of trichological products, including:
  • composition
  • effects
  • benefits.

Guidance information for assessment 

A unit of competency describes an individual skill but people rarely perform one skill at a time. Many skills are combined on a day-to-day basis in the workplace as part of work processes. This does not mean that each skill described by a unit of competency is pre-requisite to another—they are related skills.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, salon and job role is recommended for example:

  • SIHHHSC403A Apply knowledge of hair and scalp problems to trichological consultations

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. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. 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) may also be included.

Clients  may include:

  • women
  • men
  • children
  • new or regular clients with routine or special needs
  • people from a range of social, cultural or ethnic backgrounds and with a range of physical and mental abilities.

Relevant information  may include:

  • client area of concern
  • previous treatments
  • outcomes of previous treatments
  • required treatments
  • time constraints
  • budgetary constraints.

Relevant client details and history  may include:

  • date of presentation
  • identifying personal details
  • source of referral, if applicable
  • main presenting complaint or reason for consultation
  • presenting symptom picture
  • other current medical or therapeutic treatment
  • general state of health:
  • physical
  • emotional
  • allergies
  • dietary picture
  • sleep pattern
  • exercise
  • leisure activities
  • observations arising from physical and visual examination
  • outcomes of microscopic analysis.

Salon procedures  may include:

  • client privacy and safety
  • operator safety
  • procedures that comply with state or territory and local government health regulations relevant to the service
  • environmental protection practices, such as:
  • waste minimisation
  • waste disposal
  • water efficiency.

Abnormal hair and scalp conditions  may include:

  • head lice
  • scabies
  • ringworm
  • dry or oily dandruff
  • seborrhoea
  • psoriasis.

Trichological problems  may include:

  • dandruff
  • seborrheic dermatitis
  • psoriasis
  • pityriasis amiantacea
  • tinea capitis
  • traction alopecia
  • alopecia areata
  • androgenetic alopecia
  • diffuse hair loss
  • loose anagen syndrome.

Other professionals  may include:

  • medical practitioner
  • dietician
  • natural therapist.

Unit Sector(s)


Competency Field

Hair Science