Unit of competency details

SISCAQU309A - Instruct clients in water safety and survival skills (Release 2)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
2 (this release)Current 28/Nov/2011
(View details for release 1) Replaced07/Jun/2011

Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to SISCAQU009 - Instruct water safety and survival skillsUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages. 02/Sep/2015
Supersedes SRCAQU010B - Instruct water safety and survival skillsN Based on SRCAQU010B but not equivalent. SISCAQU309A includes knowledge of the principles of movement in water and their application to instructing water safety and survival skills 06/Jun/2011

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 092101 Sport And Recreation Activities  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 092101 Sport And Recreation Activities  18/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to use drills, activities and games to instruct water safety and survival skills.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to those conducting learn-to-swim and water safety classes in swimming pools and confined natural shallow water venues.

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

Elements and 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. Assess participant readiness.

1.1. Identify the characteristics of the participant group .

1.2. Identify the water safety and survival skills  to be developed.

1.3. Assess participant readiness to acquire the relevant skills.

1.4. Determine the instructional methods  and instructional styles appropriate to the participant group.

1.5. Determine the appropriate drills , activities or games  for the participant group.

1.6. Allocate sufficient space and assemble resources  for the drills, activities or games according to relevant legislation , organisational policies and procedures , conditions and external influences .

2. Conduct drills, activities and games.

2.1. Provide clear and accurate instruction in drills, activities or games using technological aids where appropriate.

2.2. Introduce participants to the water in an appropriate manner according to best practice principles of aquatic activities .

2.3. Demonstrate skills and techniques to participant group as required.

2.4. Monitor the participation and performance of each participant, according to relevant legislation, and provide feedback as required.

2.5. Observe participants' movement through water according to the principles of movement in water  and the factors affecting movement in water  and adjust or refine individual or group performance as required.

2.6. Modify drills, activities or games as required, according to participant needs and factors which affect skill development .

2.7. Respond to participant concerns and questions as required, according to best practice principles.

2.8. Respond to participants experiencing difficulties according to organisational policies and procedures and relevant legislation.

2.9. Monitor time and complete drills, activities and games according to organisational policies and procedures.

3. Review and adapt the instruction.

3.1. Request and respond to feedback from participants.

3.2. Identify aspects needing further emphasis or attention in future sessions.

3.3. Review own performance and identify areas needing improvement  and appropriate strategies as required.

3.4. Implement modifications to future instruction in response to feedback and review of participant progress.

Required Skills and Knowledge

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

Required skills 

  • communication skills to:
  • provide clear instruction
  • confirm understanding
  • request and respond to participant questions and feedback
  • problem-solving skills to:
  • identify and address participant difficulties in developing water safety and survival skills
  • maintain group control
  • planning and organisational skills to:
  • select and instruct appropriate drills, activities or games
  • manage time
  • cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques to enable initial response to emergencies.

Required knowledge 

  • legislation and organisational policies and procedures that ensure the safety of clients, other facility users and staff
  • principles of movement in water and best practice principles of aquatic activities to enable safe, effective and consistent instruction of water safety and survival skills
  • use, maintenance and care of equipment
  • cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques to enable initial response to emergencies.

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:

  • delivers concise information, explanations and demonstrations in multiple sessions to ensure drills, activities and games are conducted safely
  • observes clients and provides feedback and intervention to improve individual skill performance and survival stroke techniques as appropriate
  • modifies instructional methods, styles and activities for individuals or groups to enhance skill development as appropriate
  • applies organisational policies and procedures and relevant legislation to ensure safety of participants and other facility users as appropriate.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • conduct of drills, activities and games in multiple sessions to develop all water safety and survival skills according to the accepted best practice principles of aquatic activities
  • access to a swimming pool or confined natural shallow water venue
  • access to safety equipment relevant to local regulatory and organisational requirements
  • access to appropriate clients.

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:

  • observation of candidate instructing, monitoring and adjusting water safety and survival skills according to the needs and characteristics of participant groups and organisational safety requirements
  • oral or written questioning to assess knowledge of the application of the principles of movement in water
  • portfolio showing structure and sequencing of sessions to meet the needs of different client groups.

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

  • SISCCRO302A Apply legal and ethical instructional skills.

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.

Characteristics of the participant group  may include:

  • age
  • stage of development
  • physical or intellectual characteristics
  • cultural and situational factors.

Water safety and survival skills  may include:

  • entering and exiting the water
  • floating, sculling and treading water
  • using personal flotation devices (PFD)
  • recognising casualties
  • applying self-preservation techniques
  • non-swimming and swimming rescues
  • applying survival strokes.

Instructional methods  may include:

  • whole skill strategies
  • whole, progressive part, whole strategies
  • progressive part strategies
  • demonstration strategies
  • command and response strategies
  • experiential or problem-solving strategies
  • techniques to encourage the reluctant participant.

Drills , activities or games  may include:

  • survival strokes
  • current accepted industry training
  • skill correction drills
  • modified games.

Resources  may include:

  • flotation devices
  • first aid facilities and equipment
  • ropes
  • reaching poles
  • pool safety equipment
  • clipboards
  • instructors and equipment.

Relevant legislation  may include:

  • occupational health and safety
  • duty of care
  • working with children.

Organisational policies and procedures  may include:

  • occupational health and safety
  • communication protocols
  • AUSTSWIM Limited Swimming teachers Code of Conduct policy
  • swimwear and personal protective equipment.

Conditions and external influences  may include:

  • environmental conditions
  • other facility users
  • spectators
  • parents
  • other instructors.

Best practice principles of aquatic activities  may include:

  • accepted preventative practice adopted throughout the aquatic industry to minimise safety hazards or risks
  • AUSTSWIM Limited Swimming Teachers Code of Conduct policies
  • the culture of swimming and water safety.

Principles of movement in water  may include:

  • buoyancy
  • flotation
  • hydrostatic pressure
  • propulsion
  • lift
  • drag
  • turbulence
  • acceleration
  • resistance
  • balance and stability.

Factors affecting movement in water  may include:

  • body alignment
  • balance
  • core power.

Factors which affect skill development  may include:

  • physical, intellectual and emotional characteristics
  • venue
  • distractions
  • class size
  • water depth
  • available water space.

Areas needing improvement  may include:

  • knowledge
  • instructional skills and techniques
  • group control techniques.

Unit Sector(s)

Community Recreation

Competency Field


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