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Final Assessment

You have now completed the knowledge content and activities for PMLMAIN500A, Maintain and Control Stocks. You may undertake the assessment if you are ready or alternatively review the material in this unit again before proceeding to final assessment.

To be recognised as competent in this unit you must be assessed in both the knowledge content and workplace skills. The assessment is in two parts, part one is a scenario that asks you to apply the knowledge that you have acquired in this unit and part two is a practical assessment.

Part 1. Knowledge Assessment

In this section your knowledge and understanding of the information contained in tasks 1 to 3 will be tested based on a scenario. Your ability to synthesise this material into a clear answer will also be tested.

Read the scenario and then answer the questions that follow..


Colin has been asked to stocktake the Chemical Store for the end of the financial year accounts. Colin is a new trainee technician with only one month’s experience at SimuLab. Before that he was at school. He goes to Max, the senior technician and asks for a copy of the chemical inventory (chemical manifest) to be printed off the computer for his use.

  1. Max says “That will take too much time” and gives Colin a hard copy of the chemical inventory from the last stocktake six months ago saying that this inventory will be close enough for stocktaking purposes.

    It takes Colin three days to complete the stocktake with the highlights being:

  2. Difficulty in locating the chemicals. To start with, his chemical knowledge is not strong enough to understand what class each chemical is and where it may be located.
  3. Problems associated with alternative chemical names, as these are not listed on the inventory.
  4. Improper use of PPE and safety equipment. Colin starts wearing all the safety equipment but finds this impractical and just wears his laboratory coat.
  5. He spills some NaCN on the floor (from a jar with a cracked lid) and sweeps it up with his bare hands and drops it in the paper waste bin near the door.
  6. As the inventory is taking so long, he decides to move everything out on the bench tops and tick each off on his list. This works well for inventory purposes but he soon gets very confused about which chemical goes in which cupboard and he has to guess a number of times.
  7. He accidentally spills some HCl when he takes off the top to smell the contents of an unlabelled bottle. With a stinging nose and badly watering eyes he wipes up the small acid spill with paper towel and discards the paper into the paper waste bin by the door.
  8. He continues to work and finds that there is partition in the Corrosives Class 8 cupboard but doesn’t know what it is there for, so he just fills up both sides at random with the contents that he removed from the cabinet.
  9. He then smells a pleasant almond-like smell and starts to feel sick. He goes off to lunch and has a lie down in his car until he feels better.
  10. After lunch he continues with his stocktaking and has to add lots of chemicals that are not on his list and ends up with a list containing about twice as many chemicals as he started with. This puzzles him, as Max said that the list he was given would be reasonably accurate.
  11. On day 2 he keeps working and finds that he has confused the units on many of the chemicals already checked. For instance, giving liquids a unit of grams and solids a number of mL.
  12. He starts again and double-checks all units.
  13. He then checks all consumables and equipment in the store and even though they are not on the chemical manifest he writes then on additional blank inventory sheets.
  14. On day three he still has a large number of chemicals not accounted for such as pepsin, amylase, restriction enzymes and immunoglobulins.
  15. He checks with Trevor and is told that these are stored frozen in the main laboratory freezer or refrigerated in adjacent fridges.
  16. Trevor goes through his list and ticks off all the frozen or refrigerated chemicals.
  17. Colin then makes good progress, except when his moist hand freezes to the inside of the -80°C freezer and he loses a strip of flesh from the side of his hand.
  18. Colin pops on a bandaid and continues with the stocktake.
  19. On day 3 he presents his stocktake records to Max who hits the roof over the details and as Colin explains the problems that he encountered, Max’s face turns a deadly white.
  20. Max has the building evacuated and he and Trevor don breathing apparatus, overalls, heavy gloves, thick aprons and heavy boots. They then go to the Chemical Store, where they find the cleaner unconscious next to the waste paper bin.
  21. The cleaner is taken to hospital by ambulance and recovers fully.
  22. Max and Trevor take eight hours to bring the chemical store back to a safe position.
  23. Next day Max and Colin have a long and meaningful exchange of views. After that Max and the Laboratory Manager have an even longer and more intense exchange of views.


  • What mistakes were made in this scenario and who made them?
  • How would YOU avoid these mistakes being made at your workplace?

Note: the best way to present this answer is in point form or a table. Do not write a long rambling ‘essay’.

Part 2. Practical Assessment

Practical assessment requires you to demonstrate competency on-the-job (or in a simulated laboratory).

The assessment will consist of:

  • a demonstration of the competency on-the-job or in a simulated workplace.
  • oral questioning about things such as laboratory specific knowledge of processes, troubleshooting and
  • questioning related to specific safety or other factors that may be peculiar to the learner’s work environment, and
  • any relevant workplace documents that support the assessment. You can supply these to your Tutor if you think that they support your case for competency. For instance copies of chemical inventories that you have used, SOPs developed by you etc. Alternatively, your tutor may request specific documents to aid in your assessment.

If you are ready to undertake the practical assessment, send a message to your tutor.

Use the following link to obtain a checklist to be used by your assessor.

form icon Checklist: PMLMAIN500A Maintain and Control Stocks

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