Vocational Education and Training (VET) is an education that prepares students for specific careers within the workplace, or supports their transition to vocational and/or higher education. It is a learning option that is available to young people in schools in the senior phase of their learning, and it can provide credit towards a nationally recognised VET qualification within the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). Within schools VET is known as Vocational Education and Training in Schools (VETiS).
Following consultation with schools, industry and training providers, the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) developed VCE VET programs. These programs lead to nationally recognised qualifications, thereby offering students the opportunity to gain both the VCE and a VET qualification.
VCE VET Programs
A key success of VETiS is the integration of vocational options within the traditionally academic studies at the senior secondary school level. VETiS programs allow Year 11 and Year 12 students to:
- gain credit towards their ATAR score
- gain familiarity on how workplaces operate which supports their transition to employment
- obtain knowledge and confidence to support their transition to vocational and/or higher education
- gain employability skills.
The VCE VET programs currently available, can be found on the VCAA’s website. These programs will be enrolled by the home school on the VASS system under certificate type VES.
Selected VCE VET programs have a study score component based on the designated Units 3 and 4 sequence of their program. For scored VCE VET programs, the study score is calculated using assessments of each student’s levels of performance. Judgments about students’ levels of performance are based on evidence from two sources:
- school-assessed coursework – a set of coursework tasks set by the assessor
- an examination set by the VCAA.
Recognition of VET and Further Education (FE) within the VCE and the VCAL means that students who complete all or part of a nationally recognised qualification may receive credit towards satisfactory completion of their VCE and/or VCAL. Recognition arrangements are as follows:
- through enrolment in a VCAA approved VCE VET program, or a School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship
- Through enrolment in any other nationally recognized qualification – this arrangement is called Block Credit Recognition.
Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning
The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) is a hands-on option for students in Year 11 and Year 12. VCAL provides practical work-related experience, as well as literacy and numeracy skills, plus the opportunity to build personal skills that are important for life and work. Like the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE), VCAL is an accredited secondary certificate.
Nationally recognised VET will contribute to two of the four VCAL strands. VCE VET programs also provide credit towards VCAL.
For all certificate types, i.e. VES, NAP and VFE, a credit towards VCAL is awarded on successful completion of 90 nominal hours of accredited curriculum/nationally recognised training.
Please note: VCE VET programs are constantly being developed or revised, schools are advised to refer to the VCAA website and VCAA Bulletin VCE, VCAL and VET for the most up-to-date information.
Apprenticeships and Traineeships
School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SBATs) are two ways in which a student may undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship while still at school:
- part-time, practical experience in the workplace
- recognised, structured training with an RTO
- school-based or part-time.
SBATs in Victoria involve the student undertaking the VCE or VCAL as well as being employed part-time and trained. The student and the school have specific responsibilities within SBATs, however the training and assessment is the responsibility of the RTO.
SBATs in the following industry areas have been approved by industry bodies and the VCAA for students undertaking the VCE:
- Community Services
- Food Processing (Wine)
- Information Technology
- Sport and Recreation.
Structured Workplace Learning
Structured Workplace Learning (SWL) involves on-the-job training where students are required to master a designated set of skills and competencies related to VCE VET programs. SWL complements the training undertaken and is spread across the duration of the VCE VET program. SWL provides students with:
- enhanced skill development
- practical application of industry knowledge
- assessment of units of competency
- increased employment opportunities.
The Commonwealth Government has provided the State of Victoria with funding as a component for Skills and Workforce Development. This funding is a contribution towards the expansion of VETiS both in student participation rates and breadth and depth of programs.
VET Professional Learning Activities
Independent Schools Victoria schedule professional learning activities for each calendar year, and the programs can be found through The Development Centre.
The VCAA also schedule professional learning programs, and these can found on the VCAA website.
Block Credit Recognition
Students who undertake Vocational Education and Training (VET) or Further Education (FE) qualifications that are not included in the suite of approved VCE VET and School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships programs may be eligible for credit towards their VCE. This is called Block Credit Recognition.
VASS VETiS Enrolment
Ennrolment, unit completion and assessment data for students undertaking a senior secondary certificate in Victoria must be entered on VASS in accordance with the administrative requirements of the VCAA and must meet critical dates. Further information and advice on enrolling students in a VET qualification on VASS can be accessed through the VCAA website.
Data on VETiS is reported annually and is available on the Education Council.
VETiS within the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR)
The contribution of VCE VET programs to the ATAR is as follows:
- Where a scored Units 3 and 4 sequence is available, it will contribute directly to the ATAR, either as one of the student’s primary four studies or as a fifth or sixth study.
- For unscored VCE VET progams, students who successfully complete a units 3 and 4 sequence, it is possible to receive an increment of 10 per cent of the average of the primary four ATAR subject scores.
- VTAC may award students who receive a units 3 and 4 sequence through Block Credit Recognition at 10 per cent increment towards their ATAR.