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Newsletter | 23 September 2013

In this edition

Tertiary education split in new administrative arrangements

Technical and vocational education and training has been split between two departments under the new administrative arrangements issued by the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott.

Skills, vocational education policy regulation and programs, and training, including apprenticeships will all preside under the Department of Industry, under the new Minister for Industry, Ian MacFarlane and Parliamentary Secretary, Bob Baldwin.

The Department also has a new Secretary, Glenys Beauchamp, replacing Don Russell.

International education and regulation of technical and vocational under ASQA, and higher education under TEQSA, will remain in the Department of Education.

See the Administrative Arrangements Order.

See an article in The Australian.

Victorian training reforms detailed by Victorian Minister Peter Hall

One year on from reforms to the Victorian training system, there is a significantly higher correlation between employment and training delivery, according to the Minister for Higher Education and Skills Peter Hall.

“In just 12 months, there has been a very notable increase from 49 to 69 per cent of government funded enrolments in courses of a higher public value and areas of skills shortages, such as motor mechanics, enrolled nurses and aged care workers.”

The Victorian Training Market Quarterly Report Q2 2013 showed more government subsidised enrolments in areas of higher public value and skills shortage.

While the figure of 399,000 enrolments in 2013 is slightly down when compared to 2012, it has increased by 320,400 enrolments or 25 per cent on 2011, the Minister says.

See the Minister’s media release.

See the Training Market Quarterly Report.

Training and job opportunities in Adelaide

Some 400 young people in Adelaide's north will have the chance to boost their skills and improve their job prospects, through a new jobs and training package.

Employment Minister Grace Portolesi said four targeted projects will train young people for jobs in rail, transport, warehousing, community services and horticulture. These projects will specifically target young people in northern Adelaide who are finding difficulty accessing employment.

See more.

Young Australians over qualified and underemployed

Only around one-third of VET graduates are employed in the same occupation as their field of training, according to a report by the Foundation for Young Australians.

The report, ‘How Young People are Faring 2013’, is an annual series that provides point-in-time and trend information on the education, employment and transitions of young Australians.

The report has shown a misalignment between the skills many young people have and the jobs that are available to them: firstly, that many young Australians are overqualified for their jobs; and secondly, that those without qualifications are finding it much harder to get a good job.

A total of 26 per cent of Australian higher education graduates are underutilised immediately after course completion and 15 per cent are still underutilised three years later.

Read more.

Gender imbalance and discrimination rife in ICT sector

The Australian Computer Society (ACS) has released the findings of its 2013 Employment Survey which show an alarming level of discrimination and a continued gender imbalance.

No position surveyed showed higher than a 30% female participation rate, with the positions of ICT Business Analyst and ICT Academic having the greatest female representation at 28.9% and 26.7% respectively.

Of the 34% of respondents who indicated that they had been the subject of some discrimination, 42% were females who indicated they had experienced discrimination based on their gender. The ACS says this is an “alarmingly high number given that only 15% of respondents to the survey were female.”

See more.

Connecting with Asia breakfast seminar

The evolving dynamics of doing business in Asia will be the focus of a breakfast seminar being hosted by the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency (AWPA), in Sydney, Friday 18 October.

The breakfast will feature Dr Geoff Raby, a former Australian ambassador to China, and now a Beijing-based business consultant.

Dr Raby will share his insights and experience in a forum moderated by journalist, Kerry O’Brien. Industry CEOs and executives will discuss how they are tackling the challenges and how to prepare for the future in the Asian century. Discussion topics will include:

• What does change in Asia mean for Australia’s economy and society?

• What are the emerging key issues for executives and companies working across the Asian region?

• What are the key skills and capabilities Australian companies need to develop when striving to build, maintain and expand businesses in the Asian region, including in China?

Cost is $50 per person. To register, please contact Paula Bucic on paula.bucic@awpa.gov.au or 02 9246 0489 by Friday 4th October 2013.

Read more.

Time to reform apprenticeships - Holmesglen

Retiring Holmesglen Chief Executive and former TDA Chair, Bruce Mackenzie has proposed a re-think of the traditional model of apprenticeships to better utliise and develop skills among young people.

In an interview with Campus Review, Mackenzie says TAFE and group training organisations could work together to develop an alternative training model that does not rely on an indenture.

“There has been no reform in the core business of VET, that is, in the curriculum and the mechanisms that are used to deliver that curriculum,” he says.

“Apprenticeships have been totally resistant to change. We have little knowledge as to what attracts students to skills training, why retention rates appear to be so poor, where apprentices go if they drop out, why employers take on apprentices, and so forth.

“This proposal would lead to systemic change in curriculums, the role of the teacher, links with employers, and the means for bringing together group training companies and institutions. It would almost certainly improve retention rates and VET’s status.”

Read more.

Transport and logistics E-scan seeking input

The Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council (TLISC) is seeking input into the development of the 2014 Transport and Logistics Environmental Scan (E-Scan).

The 2013 E-Scan can be viewed here.

Submissions are due no later than Friday 18 October.

See how to make a submission.

TDA study mission to Germany and UK

TAFE Directors Australia is joining with the LH Martin Institute for Tertiary Education Leadership and Management at the University of Melbourne, to lead a provider and industry study mission on critical issues affecting the Australian technical and vocational education system.

The mission will review innovation in delivery, with insights into the student experience, employer participation and alternate pathways for apprenticeships.

The 10-day study mission will visit Germany and the United Kingdom, from 11– 21 November. It will conclude with attendance at the UK Association of Colleges 2013 Annual Conference in Birmingham.

See more.

Best practice in using scores from standardised English proficiency tests

A new tool to review English language score requirements for academic programs is being offered by Educational Testing Service (ETS) TOEFL.

Cath Moore, TOEFL iBT English Language Consultant, is offering sessions for individuals or institutions in early December 2013 and in 2014.

Contact Cath Moore at cmoore@etsglobal.org

Read more.

Diary Dates

AWPA Business Breakfast
Building next generation Asian connections

DATE: 18 October, 7.30 am
LOCATION: Sheraton on the Park, 161 Elizabeth St, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

Knowledge management – use it or lose it
Queensland VET Development Centre

DATE: 23 October
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

2013 Webinar series
Queensland VET Development Centre

DATE: August - November
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

Love Apptually webinar series
Queensland VET Development Centre

DATE: 21August - 2 October
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

Australian Council for Adult Literacy Conference
DATE: 30 September - 2 October
LOCATION: University of Technology, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

Australian International Education Conference

DATE: 8-11 October
LOCATION: National Convention Centre, Canberra
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

2013 AUSTAFE National Conference

DATE: 9-11 October
LOCATION: Gold Coast Convention Centre, Queensland
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

5th National Student Engagement Forum: Creating an engaged student experience
LH Martin Institute and the Australian Council for Educational Research

DATE: 21, 23 & 25 October
LOCATION: Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane.
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

EYEQ2013 Conference
Queensland VET Development Centre

DATE: 24-25 October
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Queensland.
DETAILS: Click here for more information

2013 AAIR National Forum
Australasian Association for Institutional Research

DATE: 13-15 November
LOCATION: Perth, Western Australia
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Risk Management for Tertiary Education Sector
Australian Institute of Company Directors and Association for Tertiary Education Management

DATE: 15 November
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

conVerge13 - E-learning Conference

DATE: 21-22 November
LOCATION: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australian Training Awards
Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education

DATE: 22 November
DETAILS: Click here for further information.

AVETRA 17th Annual Conference
Informing Changes in VET Policy and Practice: The Central Role of Research

DATE: 22-24 April 2014
LOCATION: Outrigger, Surfers Paradise, Queensland
DETAILS: Click here for further information.