Candidate Workshops

These instructional (2 day), and assessment (1 day) workshops provide Board of Surveying and Spatial Information (BOSSI) enrolled candidate surveyors with clearly defined and well structured instruction on a variety of topics associated with urban, strata and rural boundary definition, and practical advice to succesfully complete the BOSSI examinations.


As a result of declining numbers of graduate surveyors progressing to registration, and an increasing number taking an extended period to achieve registration, In 2006 the NSW Surveyor General requested that ISNSW consider developing a program to:-

  • Provide seminars for graduates seeking registration,
  • Covering urban, strata and rural boundary definition,
  • And make them of an applied, practical nature.

The Survey Practice & Legislation Committee of ISNSW took on the task of developing and organising such a program. The first Workshop held in September 2006, was an Assessment Workshop with 15 candidates bringing in their cadastral BOSSI projects for a preliminary look before going to the Board's examinations.

The Workshops Progress

The 1st Instructional Workshop was held in February 2007. Six presenters and four guest speakers presented 26 Candidates with a range of urban, rural and strata information, with a plan checking assessment session being held immediately prior to the March 2007 BOSSI exams. The feedback from BOSSI, the candidates and the mentors was positive, with suggested improvements being implemented.

In early August 2008, the Instructional Workshops were offered over a two day weekend for the first time. Economy of travel and continuity of instruction was well received by a total of 17 candidates. New features included a session on Instrument Calibration, a session on plan preparation, and good drafting practice. A resource material CD was updated and improved with additional material. Most of the mentor's presentations were included on the handout disc for the first time.

In a one hour session in August 2008 BOSSI examiners presented the assessment mentors with recent examples of both pass and fail candidate projects. This was to ensure that all assessing parties were consistent with respect to project content, and to bring assessors up to speed with the changes to the examination format. In addition assessment mentors have sat unobtrusively on the BOSSI exams to observe first hand the directions of the current exam process.

Further Progress

The process has continually evolved, to the stage where a two day Instructional Workshop (held over a weekend) and a one day Assessment Workshop (held either on a Saturday or Sunday) are staged around February and September each year.

Instructional Workshops

The Instructional Workshops now cover the following topics:-

  • Land Ownership - Old System deeds and Torrens Title
  • Notations on Title - Qualified - Limited - Current Title
  • Easements - Types - Creation by Transfer & Grant & Section 88B
  • Leases
  • Basic Strata Surveys and plans
  • Community Titles - an introduction to schemes and plans
  • Plans - good drafting practice
  • Calibration of total stations
  • Rural Surveys, including, Natural boundaries - non tidal streams, Ad medium filum aquae" - bank and bed of streams, Doctrine of accretion & erosion - gradual and imperceptible, Use of GPS for Cadastral purposes, Cadastral Portions and Town Allotments, Roads - Act 4 William IV, No 11 - 1833, Public Roads Act 1902, Roads Act 1993, and Practical Rural Boundary Definition.
  • Urban or City Surveys, including, Search, Alignments/roads, Obstructed boundaries, Old System deeds & conversions, and Identification Surveys.
  • The BOSSI examination process itself with examples of both acceptable and unacceptable projects

The order of topics covered by the Instructional Workshops varies depending on the availability of presenters. Recent successful candidates are also on hand to present their urban and rural portfolio of plans as assessed and passed by BOSSI.

Instructional Workshop attendees receive a CD covering most of the material presented. The CD includes reference articles and papers on boundary location, rural boundary surveys, old system title, history of marks and marking, the parish map, alignment surveys, notes on survey investigation and identification surveys. Most of the presenter's material is also included on the CD.

Assessment Workshops

Candidates at the planAssessment Workshops spend at least 1 hour per exam topic, per individual, at each assessment session where their search, field notes and all their calculations in addition to their plans are scrutinised.

Attendance Fees

The workshops are only available to financially enrolled candidates with BOSSI. With fees to attend determined on an annual basis as part of the ISNSW budget process.

ISNSW Members are offered a discount to attend Instructional Workshop component and the Assessment Workshops for free.

Non members who choose to join ISNSW (within a timely period) will receive the cost of the fee deducted from their relevant grade of membership.

How to Register for the Next Workshops

The next Instructional Workshop is planned to be held on the weekend of the 2nd and 3rd February 2013.

The next Plan Assessment Workshop is to be held on Saturday 23rd February 2013.

Financially enrolled candidates with BOSSI are invited to send expressions of interest in attending any or all of the Workshops by contacting the Institution office by email, or by Fax to +61 2 9261 8102.

Those candidates that register their interest will be contacted with details of each Workshop closer to the proposed commencement dates.

Spaces are limited.

Early registration is advised to ensure a place at the Workshops.

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