Having put off doing an RSA since I’ve been in Australia I finally caved and got the NSW RSA on Tuesday 14th February (romantic Valentine’s day!!) and felt like it was worth writing about seeing as I went in there clueless and somewhat cynical.

I arrived at the building where the RSA takes place at 9:30AM with a pen and my passport, gave a lady my name and headed into a room with randomly placed tables and chairs. Gave someone else my name, sat down and waited. A couple of minutes later we were guided out on to the street and taken to a different classroom in a different building.

After each getting a single sheet of paper and having a good 2 hours of irrelevant conversation it was time for our first break. Once we got back it was time for the ‘real’ learning…

At this point our teacher merrily scrolled through a PowerPoint only stopping to tell us to take a picture of slides that would actually come up in the test. He also informed us that out of the $110 that we spent on the RSA $80 goes directly to the NSW government (talk about a money scheme). After flicking through heaps of slides and taking some pictures it was time for our second break. When we got back it was time to take the test. It was painfully easy, most of the questions being common sense and the others easily found on the camera roll on our phones. Everyone quickly finished and handed in their tests and our teacher flippantly checked them; occasionally calling someone up and telling them what to write down to correct their mistakes. After 6 and a half hours we had completed about 1 hours work and had a flimsy bit of paper to show for it. It’s times like this that I miss the simplicity of an English pub.

However, the day after completing my RSA I handed out CV’s and got a trial shift the same day. So in my opinion it is definitely worth doing if you are looking for a job. Just bare in mind that the process is a bit of a joke and that NSW is the most expensive state to do it (but it does mean it is valid to use in most other states).

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