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Competencies and portfolios

Candidates should be familiar with the competencies benchmarked to be assessed in exams and portfolios.

Statutory function descriptions

The descriptions provide guidance on what is required to carry out the statutory functions as stated in schedule 10 of the WHS (Mines and petroleum sites) Regulations 2022. They were developed in consultation between the Resources Regulator, the Mining and Petroleum Competence Board and the NSW mining industry through a series of consultation workshops.

Candidates preparing to undertake exams for a function should be familiar with and understand the description to ensure their answers align with them.

Coal mines other than underground mines

Underground mines other than coal mines

Mines other than underground mines or coal mines


Competencies for statutory functions 

Competencies were identified from the statutory function descriptions through workshops led by consultants with practitioners across the various functions and classes of mines. The eight types of competencies are listed for each statutory function below.

The Resources Regulator, in consultation with the Mining and Petroleum Competence Board, endorsed for the competencies for each statutory function to be grouped into one of three levels within a Competency framework (PDF, 1.77 MB).

Competencies are extracted from the framework for each function below:

Coal mines other than underground mines

Underground mines other than coal mines

Mines other than underground mines or coal mines


Blueprinting for certificate of competence examinations

 The blueprint for each function is a reference document for examiners with a ranking system of essential and desirable benchmarks for each of the eight competencies at their level (1,2 or 3) in the above Competence framework. Against each benchmark one or more of the following types are selected to assess them:

  • portfolio of workplace documents
  • written (multiple choice, fill in the blank, short and long answer)
  • oral.

It will be made clear in the results issued to each candidate for each exam for each question what competency benchmarks are being assessed and whether they are essential or desirable. For each benchmark the assessment result will be ‘met’ or ‘not met’.

From the 2022/2023 fiscal year exams, a candidate must be assessed as competent for all essential benchmarks and at least 60% of desirable competencies.

For the 2021/2022 fiscal year, written exam candidates were continued to be marked and must achieve a minimum of 60% to pass.

Further information is available in the Guide for applying for a certificate of competence.

You can also read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) for assessment blueprinting. (PDF, 208.83 KB)


New applicants will be required to submit a portfolio with their application through the Regulator Portal. The requirements for the portfolio are set out in the Portfolio requirements for candidates (PDF, 384.97 KB)

New applicants should commence gathering their portfolio documents in preparation to be submitted with their application by the advertised closing dates.