Vocational qualifications help you get trained on a particular set of skills ideal for a specific industry or sector. They are mostly planned as training programs with lots of hands-on training and extensive practical content. Such courses are relatively short and can usually be completed in 2 years. Vocational Education and Training has been designed with the following purposes in mind:
- To join the workforce with a specialized skillset
- To move into a new career
- To acquire additional skills
VET Qualifications and Possible Career Outcomes
Vocational training offered by the government in Australia is known as TAFE, short for Technical and Further Education Institutions. The Australian government maintains quality in their education as per the ESOS Act (Education Services for Overseas Students). The qualifications offered under VET are:
1.Certificate I – IV – These courses prepare you for introductory skills and provide fundamental training to obtain certain skills for a specific industry. The duration of courses can vary between 4 months and two years. Certificate I offers the most basic training to qualify a person as a competent operator, while Certificate IV allows a person to train for the skills of a supervisor.
2. Diploma – A diploma course prepares you for a career as a paraprofessional. This allows you to work in various fields or industries as an assistant to professionals of the field. Paraprofessionals do not have the qualification to obtain a license for a particular profession, but they are recognized as professionals who are trained in the field.
3. Advanced Diploma – Paraprofessionals who are looking for a way to advance their careers often choose advanced diplomas to expand their level of practical skills. These courses can last between 18 months to 2 years.
You may not have to start your VET course from certificate I. Very often, and you can get started from certificate III or IV directly and then gradually move your way up to diploma and advanced diploma course.
Difference Between Vocational Training and Higher Education
Vocational training is focused on preparing a person for a specific skill set in a short period of time by creating a practical course which involves lots of hands-on pieces of training. They are work-oriented and are helpful in providing you with employment skills.
Higher education, on the other hand, is based mostly on theoretical training, and it usually involves a longer period of time. It also helps a person obtain a professional career in the future.
The basic eligibility of a VET course is a minimum education of Australian class 10th, 11th, or 12th. Every institution and curriculum, however, will have its own set of eligibility criteria based on the skills that they will be teaching.
To be eligible, some courses may check for specific subjects, work experience, or proof of work (like design students may have to submit a portfolio).
You must ask the institution for details of the eligibility requirements and check for any additional requirements for the course you want to undertake. At the same time, find out about the course fees, the total duration of the course and the date of the beginning of the class.
Top Vocational Courses in Australia
VET courses prepare you to undertake a career in different industries based on the skills you learn through the course. The most common vocational courses are:
Benefits of Vocational Courses
International students will find professional courses to be an excellent start for their career in Australia. It can help them obtain a visa and can give them the opportunity to work while they study. Weekly attendance time in such courses is usually more flexible than other educational courses.
Since these courses prepare you for specific professional skills, a certificate or diploma course may be necessary if you are trying to find work within a particular field. You also have the opportunity of integrating professional courses with your university degree.
You will get considerable exposure to the industry through internships and training placements helping you build a network and easily find a job when the course is completed.
With practical knowledge and the right skill set required in a field of work, vocational training helps many people begin their career.