Page 46 - Australian Defence Magazine Aug 2019
P. 46

“The breadth and complexity of the VET sector leads to
a lack of knowledge of the sector as a whole.”
numeracy and communication skills across all levels within or- ganisations. Secondary school students, parents and influ- encers must be encouraged to consider VET pathways as an alternative to the focus on ob- taining high Australian Tertia- ry Admissions Ranks (ATAR), which is seen at some secondary schools nationally.
There are currently a number
of challenges for the VET sec-
tor and its stakeholders. One significant challenge is the nega-
tive perception of the sector
as a whole, resulting from the
breadth and complexity of the
sector, perceptions of being the
poorer cousin of higher educa-
tion and media exposure of poor
provider behaviours and quality
concerns. Other key challenges
include the lack of flexibility in funding and qualification structures.
The VET sector consists of thousands of qualifications and units of competency, multiple provider types, varying fund- ing models and different delivery types such as apprenticeship and institutional
learning. It is unlikely the majority of pro- spective learners, industry representatives and influencers are aware of the range of qualifications available through the VET sector, the career outcomes of these quali- fications, have knowledge of the funding available across jurisdictions, the criteria associated with these funding processes and differences between enterprise and ap- prenticeship delivery.
It is difficult to educate all prospective VET users in every aspect of the sector and associated processes. However, the imple- mentation of career pathway diagrams and fact sheets will at least give prospective learners and industry an understanding of the range of options available and steps that can be taken to meet career ambitions.
ADM understands that that NSC have been actively working with industry part-
Delivery of the National Shipbuilding Plan will take a variety of skill sets.
ners, most notably Naval Group and BAE Systems Australia, to nail down a taxonomy of skills needed for both the Future Sub- marine and Future Frigate in particular (see this month’s From the Source interview with Naval Group Australia CEO John Da- vis for more on this).
As this edition of ADM was going to press, the NSC announced that Flinders University is the first higher education institution in Aus- tralia to have been endorsed as delivering a course aligned with the future employment needs of the naval shipbuild- ing industry.
Its Bachelor of Engineering (Mechani- cal) (Honours) is endorsed with the fol- lowing programs of study expected to follow:
education qualifications throughout their careers to support progression. The percep- tion that VET is for learners who are less engaged in schooling must be addressed.
Consistency and quality
The NSC strongly supports the continued use of training package products to help ensure consistency of outcomes, however, there are still a number of challenges with these qualifications in relation to currency and relevance, and in some cases, flexibility of packaging rules. Particular issues arise as industry implements new technologies and adopt more contemporary manufacturing techniques. Examples include the qualifi- cations within the Metal & Engineering and Electrotechnology training packages, amongst others, where the ability to import additional marine construction content would be of benefit to the industry.
Acknowledging that regular updates to training packages can have a resource im- pact on training providers and potentially disadvantage learners, there are a number of training packages that have remained without substantial update for many years. In some cases, content within the training package is no longer relevant to industry or there are cases where no units of competency exist to develop the skills and knowledge re- quired by industry.
Industry is constantly having to adapt to technological advancements and in- creased globalisation. It is essential that training package products are updated to address changing requirements and
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To meet current and future industry re- quirements, Australia needs to ensure the VET and higher education sectors are both high functioning and complementary, with learners completing both VET and higher
Bachelor (Honours) Bachelor (Honours)
Bachelor (Honours) Australian
of Engineering (Electrical) of Engineering (Software)
of Engineering (Maritime) – in conjunction with the
Maritime College
Bachelor of Engineering (Electronics)
Bachelor of Engineering (Robotics)
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