VOCATIONAL EDUCATION & TRAINING
- August 29, 2022
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Study in Australia
Vocational means “work” or “career”.
Vocational Education and Training (VET) focuses on education and training for work roles.
In general, VET study:
• Offers a variety of certificates and diplomas.
• Develops professional and personal skills closely linked with industry.
• Develops career paths through a mix of study and practical work.
• Generally combines classroom study as well as hands-on training.
• Is competency-based- students must demonstrate skills to qualify.
STRUCTURE OF THE AUSTRALIAN VET SECTOR
Australia’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector offers a large variety of qualifications for students with a strong practical orientation.
1) The Students
VET students are typically:
• High schools graduates seeking to acquire practical skills for work or an alternative pathway to university.
• Workers seeking to develop their career skills further.
• University graduates who need to acquire practical skills for the work.
• Anyone wishing to develop their interests.
2) The Institutions
The Australian VET system is publicly and privately funded and delivered by a variety of training institutions and enterprises.
2a) TAFE – Technical and Further Education
They are government-funded, provide post-school education and training, and usually have a more practical focus than university courses.
TAFE colleges act independently and have their premises, courses, and academic and administrative staff.
They contain some of the largest ELICOS centres in Australia and are sometimes part of a university. For example, every university in Victoria except one has a TAFE division.
TAFE courses are often used by international students as a pathway to undergraduate programs at university, especially via the Diploma route. Some TAFEs offer university degrees through affiliated universities, and some offer their own degrees.
2b) Private Colleges
They range from small institutions that offer specialised courses in one particular area of study to large ones similar to larger TAFE institutes.
A wide variety of VET courses are offered through private colleges.
These are popular with international students as pathway institutions, since they can provide entry to university studies after completing a VET qualification. Also, some private institutions offer university programs through affiliated universities, and others provide their own Degrees.
3) The Courses
VET providers offer a range of courses from Certificate I through to Bachelor Degrees, Graduate Certificates and sometimes Graduate Diplomas.
The following list details some of the more popular and common programs offered in Australia:
- Business and Management
- Community services and health care
- Communications and information technology
- Design and the arts
- Engineering and building
- Hospitality and tourism
- Land management, agriculture, fisheries and forestry
- Sports & recreation
AUSTRALIAN VET QUALIFICATIONS
The general aims of Certificate level courses are to:
• Prepare candidates for both employment and further education and training.
• Recognise skills and knowledge that meet national industry standards.
Certificates I and II are qualifications which recognise the students’ basic vocational skills and knowledge.
Certificates III and IV are the equivalents of trade certificates in various vocations. These prepare students for employment, further education and training in their chosen field.
Diploma courses aim to:
•Prepare students to use their skills and knowledge based on fundamental principles and complex techniques.
•Recognise the ability to show initiative and judgment across a broad range of technical and management functions.
A more specialised qualification that shows skill and knowledge of a greater complexity and a higher level of personal accountability.
Vary from institution to institution and from course to course.
In general, to begin a certificate-level course, students need:
• A qualification equivalent to Grade 10-12 in an Australian high school,
• An English language proficiency of IELTS 5.5 or TOEFL paper-based 530-550 or equivalent in other accepted language tests.
Entry requirements above certificate level may take into account previous training and experience within an industry. This process is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).
RPL allows a person to receive recognition and credit for the knowledge and skills they have, no matter how and where they were attained, including overseas.
Can include skills from:
• The previous study – including courses at school or college, through adult education classes or training programs at work;
• Work experience – including both work that is paid and unpaid;
• Life experience – for example, leisure pursuits or voluntary work.
To obtain RPL, a student’s knowledge and skills must help to meet the learning outcomes and assessment criteria of the qualification the student is seeking credit for. RPL
Assessment can result in a full qualification or a Statement of Attainment for partial completion.
COST OF VET FOR OVERSEAS STUDENTS
Course fees vary greatly depending on the course and/or the institution. As a general guide, international students pay tuition fees of $A5,500 to $18,000 per year. The average tuition fee is approximately $10,000 per year.
PATHWAYS TO HIGHER EDUCATION
A significant strength of the VET system is that it provides an alternative pathway to higher education or more specialised vocational training.
AQF qualifications link with each other in a range of learning pathways between schools, VET providers and universities. This encourages cross-sectoral linkage programs such as:
1) VET in Schools
– this allows schools to offer industry-based units of learning that can contribute to both the Senior Secondary Certificate of Education and Certificate I – IV qualification.
2) Articulation and Credit Transfer Arrangements between registered VET providers and universities – this involves the efficient articulation of programs and maximum credit transfer.
3) Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) – credits granted towards qualifications through assessment of an individual’s knowledge and skills gained through education, training, work and life experience.
ADVANTAGES OF VET
Vocational Education and Training provide a number of significant advantages to students:
• It gives students access to many job opportunities after as little as ten months of training.
• It offers students more job opportunities and higher earnings based on improved qualifications.
• Students can develop practical and professional skills taught by industry-experienced instructors.
• About 70 to 80% of employers are satisfied with VET training since it provides students with appropriate skills, which leads to increased productivity.
• The vocational and practical nature of VET curricula places less pressure on students with lower levels of English proficiency. This gives these students more time to develop their language skills before undertaking academic-level studies if they wish to continue.