It's the end of year 12, you are about to finish school and now thinking about future and there are a lot of pathways to consider. Going into further education is a great way to enhance your skills and your employability prospects. Apart from the more lengthy academic option of going into University studies there is an alternative of doing a vocational training if your area of expertise doesn't require a degree.
Vocational education and training (VET) institutions offer a wide range of courses that combine practical skills with theoretical knowledge called national competency standards, which has been set out by employers. The majority of Australia's secondary schools also provide vocational training in addition to their curriculum, which follow the same competencies and end in a nationally recognised qualification. All institutions that provide VET courses, whether they are state administered Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutes or private Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), are required to follow the Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF). The latter links schools and further education including universities into one national system which authorises institutions and controls the quality of education.
The subjects VET covers are varied: English, arts, business management, agriculture, sports and recreation, nursing, science and so on. The programs for these are created in accordance with employers' requirements and needs and in contrast to University courses you get a practical hands on approach to learning rather than just reading from textbook. Not only can these courses open the doors for you into a career but they can also be a gateway for your further educational development if you decide to continue your studies: many can count towards a Bachelor level degree at certain universities.
The length of the course depends on the subject and level of competencies as set out by AQTF and can vary from 4 to 36 months, but usually it takes 2 years to complete a course. VET is recognisable in the entire country and therefore is transferable between all the states of Australia.