The Australian Government has committed to measures ensuring post-secondary education better serves the needs of students, with stronger alignment between the higher education and VET sectors.

The commitment follows the Review of the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), headed by Professor Peter Noonan, with recommendations including:

  • Facilitating senior secondary students to study subjects at school that count towards a vocational training qualification or university degree;
  • Recognition of micro-credentials to allow providers to offer short, highly-targeted courses; and
  • VET and higher education to have clear and flexible entry and exit points, as well as pathways within and between, to allow students to mix and match the subjects they study to meet their education requirements.

The Morrison Government has accepted all recommendations of the review in relation to higher education.

It also said it accepted the recommendations in relation to vocational education, contingent on discussions with state and territory governments.

Minister for Education Dan Tehan said the government was providing flexibility to the qualifications system to meet student and employer demand.

“We are providing structure and clarity to vocational education and higher education to reflect the real world,” Mr Tehan said.

“We want to make it easier for Australians to move between vocational training and higher education and to earn micro-credential qualifications that will improve their productivity.

“These reforms will cut red tape and improve the operation and quality of education in Australia.”

Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business Michaelia Cash said the government would continue to work closely with the sector and state and territory Skills Ministers.

“We will fully consider the recommendations in the context of our broader reform agenda, including the COAG VET Roadmap already underway,” Minister Cash said.

“Our government is lifting the status of VET and there are clear benefits for both sectors working closer together – for example, someone studying engineering at university could benefit from hands-on experience by studying a site management course at a TAFE or private RTO.”

AMMA members are represented on skills and training policy through AMMA’s involvement on the Australian Industry Skills Committee. Any members with views on the AQF review or any other vocational education matters should contact [email protected]