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Appointment of Vocational Education and Training Advisory Board

The Minister for Industry, the Hon Ian Mcfarlane MP, has announced the appointment of a five-member Vocational Education and Training Advisory Board. The Board will work with the VET Reform Taskforce, providing feedback on the Government’s reform activities and helping to advance national reform priorities.

The five members of the Board are:

  • John Hart (Chair) – CEO of Restaurant and Catering Australia and a member of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Council
  • Patrick McKendry (Deputy Chair) – CEO of Careers Group Australia and former Chairman of the National Quality Council and TVET Australia
  • Tara Diamond – Executive Director of Industry Services at the Australian Mines and Metals Association
  • Dominique Fisher – Executive Chairman and Managing Director of CareerLounge
  • Jodie Hughson – Manager for Quality, Learning and Workplace Development for Anglicare, Southern Queensland.

Further information about the Board is in the Minister’s press release of 15 August 2014.

National Skills Week 2014, 25-31 August

National Skills Week was officially launched by the Minister for Industry, the Hon Ian Macfarlane MP, on 21 August in Brisbane (pictured above, left). Minister Macfarlane was joined by Queensland’s Minister for Education, Training and Employment, the Hon John-Paul Langbroek MP, and two Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors, Rachel Dudok (pictured above, centre) and Russell Routledge (pictured above, right).

The theme of this year’s National Skills Week was ‘The Magical Mystery Tour of Skills.’

Each year National Skills Week aims to create awareness of the benefits of a vocational education and training (VET) pathway to individuals, and the benefits to business of providing nationally recognised qualifications to employees.

“National Skills Week is the perfect vehicle to showcase opportunities in the training sector and demonstrate how skills are crucial to the nation’s prosperity,” Minister Macfarlane said at the launch.

This year’s event saw a large number of local, state and national events across Australia – from as far and as wide as Nhulunbuy to Ulladulla and from Sydney across to Perth. There was strong involvement from Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors and Australian Training Awards winners, runners up and finalists who shared their positive experiences with VET and Australian Apprenticeships at many events held across Australia.

At the New South Wales launch of National Skills Week, Markeeta Douglas, the 2013 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year, received huge applause when she shared her experiences and how her qualification in audiometry is making a difference in her community.

For more information, visit the National Skills Week website. To read Minister Macfarlane’s media release from the official launch event, visit his media page.

To keep up-to-date with the Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors programme and the Australian Training Awards’ involvement in activities like National Skills Week, like Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors on Facebook and follow @AusApprentice and @AusTrainAwards on Twitter.

Are you ready for the USI?

With confirmation of the commencement of the Unique Student Identifier (USI) initiative on 1 January 2015, the USI team is continuing to work with stakeholders on preparations for the implementation of the scheme.

The USI team has been in contact with registered training organisations (RTOs) to provide information about steps they can take to prepare for the commencement of the USI.

Discussions have also taken place with student management system developers. RTOs are encouraged to talk to their student management system developers to ensure the USI can be included in enrolment and student management processes.

For more information visit the Unique Student Identifier website or email the USI Taskforce.

What do Australians know about VET pathways?

In June 2014, WorldSkills Australia undertook a quantitative survey focused on better understanding the knowledge and perceptions of the vocational education and training (VET) sector.

The results showed a significant lack of understanding of the sector, with one in four Australians admitting to not knowing what is meant by the term ‘vocational education and training’.

The research also showed that many Australians are unaware of the education and training options available to them – more than a third (38 per cent) were unaware that jewellery is offered as a VET qualification, one quarter didn’t know bricklaying qualifications were offered and one in five weren’t aware plumbing was offered.

Many Australians believe a trade-based career is aspirational (76 per cent) yet more than two thirds have never considered following a trade-based pathway, suggesting a perception problem or a lack of understanding about what the sector can offer.

Overall, the study suggests that more should be done to educate people as to the options available to young Australians as they prepare to enter the workforce.

Additionally, the sector needs to better communicate its contribution to the Australian economy, while continuing to encourage investment in, and recruitment to, our vocational workforce.

Further information about the survey and its results is available on WorldSkills Australia’s website.

APEC 2014 photo contest – now open!

The annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) photo contest is now open! The contest is based on the question "How doyou see trade in your life?"

APEC invites amateur and professional photographers to submit images of their interpretation of APEC’s priorities in 2014, which are:

  • Boosting the region’s free trade and economic integration
  • Promoting innovative development, reform and growth
  • Connecting the region through infrastructure development and institutional linkages.

Winners will be announced during APEC Economic Leaders’ Week in November, with cash prizes available to the overall winner (selected by an international panel of judges) and the winner of the Popular Choice Award, to be determined through a Facebook voting process.

Further information is available on the contest's website, where you can also view the winning photographs of previous years. Submissions close on 19 September 2014.

Foundation Skills Assessment Tool (FSAT)

The Department of Industry has contracted the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) to develop an online Foundation Skills Assessment Tool (FSAT) to identify and assess an individual's foundation skill levels. The tool will be available free to assist learners, job seekers, trainers, educators and employment services practitioners to assess their own or a client’s foundation skill levels, and help identify any gaps in skills and knowledge. The FSAT will be based around the theoretical underpinnings of the Australian Core Skills Framework and the Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework.

ACER is interested in hearing from interested LLN, VET and employment services providers to participate in trials in order to gain evidence about the performance of the tool and provide feedback about the assessment system being developed.

Further information about the FSAT and trials is available on ACER's website.


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AgriFood Skills Australia

2015 Environmental Scan – National consultations

Each year, AgriFood Skills Australia develops its Environmental Scan – the ‘early warning system’ for Australia’s vocational education and training system and governments on industry’s skill and workforce development needs. Based on real-time views and evidence from across the country, it sets out the factors impacting on the shape and capability of the agrifood workforce and how well the VET system, its products and services are responding and, importantly, what needs to happen.

The single most important factor in determining the agrifood industry’s future will be its education and skills base and how well we use new knowledge and innovation to build a highly productive, dynamic and adaptive workforce. Many see the next few years as transformative. Grass roots insights and immediacy of industry intelligence are what sets the Environmental Scan apart from other reports in the VET system.

For this reason, the Scan is not about recycling already published statistics or economic analyses found elsewhere, which by their very nature are historical. Rather, it’s about your views and conversations with industry, those doing the jobs, employing the workforce and providing support services to industry – all of whom experience firsthand the issues needing to be written about and to which the VET system needs to respond.

There are three ways to contribute your views to this year’s Environmental Scan:

  • attend a face-to-face workshop – workshops are being held in each state and territory
  • complete an online survey
  • make a written submission.

For more information, to register to participate in the consultations, or to provide your views, visit AgriFood’s website.

Training package development projects

Scoping projects are underway to develop job role statements for the following industry sectors:

  • Veterinary nursing
  • Captive animals
  • Companion animal services
  • Arboriculture (trade level)
  • Permaculture
  • Retail baking
  • Wine industry operations.

The job roles statements developed through these projects will be used to inform qualification design during transition to the Standards for Training Packages. If you would like to be involved in consultation on job roles in the identified sectors, please email your details to AgriFood. Don’t forget to advise of which project or projects you would like to be involved in!

Community Services & Health ISC

Public consultations now open through new web portal

CS&HISC’s next major public consultation period will close on 12 September 2014.

To make the processes of providing feedback easier, CS&HISC has developed a Public Consultation web portal, allowing stakeholders to easily save, review and submit comments on all draft components. It is recommended that you download the consultation paper/s relevant to your sector/s before submitting feedback. The papers are available on the web portal.

Visit CS&HISC’s Training Packages page for further information about consultations that are currently open. The Qualifications Under Review page lists those sectors undertaking training package reviews and consultations.

Amended Continuous Improvement Plan

CS&HISC has amended its Continuous Improvement Plan to reflect work completed in the past year, project updates and changes to the Community Services and Health training packages. It also includes timelines for the remainder of the review to December 2015. Further information is available on CS&HISC's website.

Changes to Advanced Diplomas in Complementary and Alternative Health

After issuing a bulletin in early July, CS&HISC would like to again alert stakeholders to the planned removal of the Advanced Diplomas of Homeopathy, Naturopathy, Nutritional Medicine and Western Herbal Medicine from the Health training package in December 2015.

Stakeholders made submissions during two rounds of consultation.

For further information and to view the collaborative submission from associations and registers supporting the proposed changes visit the Complementary and Alternative Health qualifications webpage.

Ayurveda qualifications in the Health training package

Draft two content of Ayurveda qualifications and units of competency is available for public consultation until 12 September 2014. Based on discussions between subject matter experts, the current proposal in Ayurveda is for two qualifications:

  • Diploma of Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultation (an upgrade of the existing Certificate IV in Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultation to better reflect the scope of practice)
  • Advanced Diploma of Ayurveda.

Further information is available on CS&HISC’s Complementary and Alternative Health page.

Innovation and Business Skills Australia

Join the communities today to keep in touch with good practice in VET!

The IBSA VET capability communities were launched in February 2014 as part of IBSA’s online VET Community site. Since the launch hundreds have joined the community and have registered thousands of views.

The online communities provide practical content, blogs and discussions relevant to VET practitioners (teachers / trainers / assessors and managers). The aim is to create a professional, informed environment that supports quality practice and elevates the status of VET professionals and RTOs. Join the communities to post questions, read and post blogs, download the library resources and be kept updated on what’s happening in the communities.

The communities are set up around the four domains of the IBSA VET Capability Framework, which is shown in the graphic above.

Got a question or issue? Post it in the discussion forum!

Join the communities and post your question in the discussion forum set up in each community. Training and assessment specialists are monitoring the posts, and experts in the community are available to help with answering your questions.

Service Skills Australia

SIS Sport, Fitness and Recreation training package: continuous improvement update

Service Skills Australia (SSA) is undertaking continuous improvement of the Fitness and Community Recreation and Sport and Outdoor Recreation training package components.

Fitness and Community Recreation

The proposed scope for draft two of the Fitness and Community Recreation training package components has been approved and is expected to be ready for validation in September.

SSA will contact all stakeholders via email when draft two is open for feedback on SSA’s website.

Sport and Outdoor Recreation

The Sport and Outdoor Recreation training package components review is underway. Scoping for both projects is expected to take some time and the initial drafting is not likely to take place until the end of 2014.

The Sector Reference Group (SRG) members for both projects will contact their networks over the next couple of months to get their input. A list of SRG members for all projects is now available.

For further information please email Catherine Baker or Elly Snyder.

SIH Hairdressing training package update

SSA is conducting a review of the Hairdressing training package under its continuous improvement plan. The continuous improvement of this training package provides the opportunity for the hairdressing industry, employers and employees and registered training organisations to provide input on current and future industry skills and knowledge requirements.

As part of this process, there will be two ways of capturing the information:

  1. An online survey aimed at employers and employees in the industry
  2. A number of industry forums will be held around the country. Venue and other details will be provided on confirmation of attendance.

Please visit SSA's website for further information on the survey, forum dates and registration.

SIB Beauty training package update

SSA is approaching the validation stage of the review process, which will see beauty qualifications, units of competency and associated assessment requirements available for comment.

During validation training package components will be made available via SSA’s feedback register.

Notification will be provided via SSA's website and e-blasts.


Resources and Infrastructure Industry (RII) training package assessment requirements review

Registration for the RII assessment requirements review consultation workshops is now open.

As part of the public consultation phase of the review, these workshops will be conducted throughout September 2014. For more information on the review process please refer to SkillsDMC’s RII Assessment Requirements Review page.

The workshops are a forum for stakeholders to discuss recommendations from the first phase of the review, which have been developed based on written submissions and industry input received. Recommendations will be published on the RII Assessment Requirements Review page before the workshops begin as part of the written submission summary report.

Individuals who register for a workshop will have the report emailed to them at least one week prior to the date of their registered workshop.

For information on workshop locations and to register please visit the Events page of SkillsDMC’s website.


Australian School-based Apprenticeships

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Starting your apprenticeship whilst still at school is a fantastic way of getting a head-start in your chosen career. With an Australian School-based Apprenticeship, you can undertake secondary school studies and apprenticeship studies and placements simultaneously – earning AND learning!

The two newest Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors are both excelling in their careers after completing Australian School-based Apprenticeships. Read their stories below and feel inspired!

Hospitality guru: skilled and confident

Maddison McDonald: Kitchen assistant
Certificate III in Hospitality

Feeling unsatisfied with her secondary school learning, Maddison was thrilled to accept an Australian School-based Apprenticeship whilst in Year 11. She has since gone on to be named the ACT’s 2013 School-based Apprentice of the Year and was a finalist in the same category at the 2013 Australian Training Awards. Read more about the confidence and experience Maddison has gained since she signed up for her Australian School-based Apprenticeship.

An Australian School-based Apprenticeship….. “Why not?”

Jessica Perry: Client engagement and communications officer
Certificate III in Business

Since completing her Australian School-based Apprenticeship, Jessica has not only won several awards but has also established her own business! Read more about how Jessica is applying her own skills and enthusiasm to helping others through providing career planning assistance to students and working with employers to engage with their future workforce.


This is a periodic section of our newsletter where we will feature Australians who have achieved personal and or career success as a direct result of their studies in the vocational education and training sector.

If you know of someone who may wish to share their success story with our readers, please email us at skillsatwork@industry.gov.au.

Mark Little

Growing up watching his father and grandfather pursue their trades, Mark has always enjoyed working with his hands. After a short stint in the horticulture industry, he sought a building apprenticeship when he was 17. He worked hard and was a registered builder by age 26, winning a number of awards along the way, including Master Builders Association of Victoria (MBAV) Apprentice of the Year (pictured, top) and Best Overall Apprentice in Carpentry, Gordon Institute of TAFE’s Outstanding Apprentice in Carpentry and Geelong Regional Apprentice of the Year.

Now running his own successful construction company, Mark continues to win awards for his work, including ‘Best Renovation/Addition’ awards at the MBAV Regional Building Awards in 2010 and 2012 (pictured, bottom).

We asked Mark how he got started and then worked his way up through the building industry, what he would do differently now and what he would like to do next.

Why did you enter the field that you did?

My father was a plumber, my grandfather a painter. Ever since I was four years old, I had pieces of timber in the backyard that I used to hammer nails into. When I was 16 I wanted to get a job working with my hands outside and started doing work experience as a landscape gardener, but I was warned that ‘there’s not a lot of money in it’, and ‘people tend to do it themselves.’ By the time I was 17 I had completed year 11 and wanted to leave school, but my father said that I couldn’t leave unless I had an apprenticeship. If I couldn’t get one then he’d offer me one as a plumber. That motivated me. It was 1994 and we were in the midst of a recession. I rang just about every builder in the Yellow Pages looking for work, to no avail. About six weeks later I rang them all again, but still there was nothing. A builder that I hadn’t called heard about my efforts through one of his peers and offered me an apprenticeship.

Is it everything you hoped it would be?

I knew it would be tough, but even then it was a fair bit tougher than I thought. The building industry offers a fantastic lifestyle but it is demanding - it rewards hard work, and penalises laziness. It is what you make of it.

Tell us about some of the challenges you faced along the way. What, if anything, would you have done differently?

The hardest part has been my age. I have always just pushed hard and worried about the consequences later… this has been both good and bad. Getting registered as a builder at the age of 26 was very hard (and good!). However, I was a bit too green. I knew everything there was to know about a building site, the construction process and the quality of my work, but I wasn’t very good at bookwork or dealing with clients. If I had my time again I would still get registered at 26, but would also incorporate a business management course of some sort into my training.

What are the highlights of your journey from apprentice to award-winning builder?

All of the awards I won during my apprenticeship are a definite highlight. I worked for a very old school boss who didn’t really offer much praise for good work, so it was very satisfying to get recognition of my achievements. My two Master Builders awards are great, too! They were great projects for fantastic clients.

What are you currently doing in your career?

There are currently three arms to our business: renovations and extensions (20 per cent of our work), custom new homes (20 per cent), and our range of floor plans (60 per cent). We are in a growth phase, signing up new projects almost monthly, and a new employee has just started. We have just received planning approval for our very first display home, which is due to open in April 2015.

What would you like to be doing in 10 years?

Ideally I would still like to be a registered builder, building between 25-30 homes a year. However, the building industry had changed massively in recent years with the amount of administration/red tape that you have to go through. Hopefully this will level off or be trimmed back in the coming years. The industry is also starting to swing away from the ‘biggest house for the cheapest price’ concept. You really do get what you pay for and a lot of people are happy to get a smaller home, and pay extra to get a product and service. Hopefully this continues.

Thanks Mark!


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State and territory training awards season is commencing!

It’s training awards season! Each year, the eight state and territory governments host training awards programmes to recognise and celebrate excellence in their jurisdiction’s vocational education and training sector. The culminating event of the season, the Australian Training Awards, recognises excellence at the national level by bringing together a combination of state and territory winners and direct entry award nominations to compete for a national title.

The dates for these awards are as follows. Further information on each is available through the links.

Applications for all these awards are now closed. The winners of all awards will be posted on the above websites following the ceremonies.

VET FEE-HELP approved provider training

Dates throughout 2014

The Australian Government’s Department of Education will be conducting training sessions for approved VET FEE-HELP providers throughout 2014. This training is suitable for both recently approved and existing providers wishing to refresh their knowledge.

Details and schedules of dates and venues are available on the Department of Education's website.

SkillsDMC annual conference

11 September 2014, Brisbane

It’s that time again! The SkillsDMC 2014 annual conference will be held on 11 September in Brisbane. The theme for this year’s conference, Quality Outcomes through Skilling Partnerships, highlights the critical characteristic of skilling the workforce where industry determines the skills requirements and suppliers deliver quality training outcomes, to meet the needs of a zero harm and productive environment.

World class speakers at this year’s annual conference include leaders from across the worldwide resources and infrastructure industry:

  • Michael Roche - Chief Executive, Queensland Resources Council
  • Chris James - Assistant Director, Workforce Skills, Minerals Council of Australia
  • David Overall - Chief Executive Officer, Downer Mining
  • Darrell Cox - Manager Employee Development, Thiess Pty Ltd
  • Rod Ramsay - Chief Executive Officer, Resources Industry Skills Association
  • Mark Knowles - Superintendent Training and Development, Rio Tinto
  • Tony Noonan - General Manager, Macmahon Holdings
  • Paul Hemburrow - General Manager Yandi, BHP Billiton
  • Jeremy Donovan - National Development Director, GenerationOne
  • Liz Watts - Operations Manager, Glencore.

Panel sessions at the conference will cover a broad range of topics relevant to today’s industry, including:

  • the importance of establishing industry confidence in validating skills and competencies of its workforce
  • the evolution of the resources and infrastructure industry workforce and the need for diverse workforces to meet the global skills challenge
  • the value of a global workforce with transferable skills which meet the needs of industry worldwide, and the challenges and opportunities these workforces present.

The 10th SkillsDMC annual conference is a unique and valuable opportunity which will showcase how collaboration between industry, service providers and governments continues to shape future workforce planning and development initiatives. Michael Pascoe will be the Master of Ceremonies.

Registrations close on 5 September. For more information and to register please visit the conference website.

Velg Training 2014 national VET conference

11 and 12 September 2014, Brisbane

Velg has a line-up of amazing speakers for its 2014 national VET conference including a highlight on day one of the programme, a keynote address by the Minister for Industry, the Hon Ian Macfarlane MP. This address is one of the most anticipated sessions and is one not to be missed!

The Minister’s profile, and the full conference programme, is available on the conference's website.

There are so many reasons to attend the 2014 conference! There will be 65 sessions, including presentations by:

  • Chris Robinson – Chief Commissioner, ASQA
  • Peta Furnell – Head of the VET Reform Taskforce, Department of Industry
  • The Hon Sharon Bird MP – Shadow Minister for Vocational Education
  • Jason Coutts – Branch Manager, Information Infrastructure Branch, Department of Industry
  • Craig Robertson – Head of Skills Policy Division, Department of Industry
  • representatives from 10 of the 11 Industry Skills Councils.

VETnetwork Australia 2014 biennial national conference

17–19 September 2014, Darwin

The VETnetwork Australia 2014 biennial national conference provides an opportunity for VET practitioners from senior secondary schools and colleges, career and enterprise educators, training organisations, university academics, researchers, policy developers, consultants and industry to network, learn, interact and engage.

This conference will attract over 300 delegates from around Australia. Don’t miss your opportunity to attend this amazing event!

For full programme details and information on the dynamic keynote and workshop presenters from Australia and abroad, please visit the conference's website.

2014 WorldSkills Australia national competition

18–20 September 2014, Perth

Who are our next national champions?

The nation’s largest and most prestigious skill and trade showcase is returning to Perth for the first time since 1989!

The 2014 WorldSkills Australia National Competition will be held at Perth’s Convention and Exhibition Centre in September. With over 17 000 square metres of competition and exhibition space, there will be plenty of exciting and interactive activities in which to take part.

The three day event will showcase the skills of 500 of Australia’s best trainees, apprentices and students competing for the prestigious title of ‘Nation’s Best’ in over 50 skill and trade areas ranging from the traditional trades such as plumbing, bricklaying and hairdressing to the more contemporary professions of web design and fashion technology.

The National Competition will also feature 30 interactive Try’aSkill programmes, where visitors can try their hand at various skill and trade areas including hairdressing, carpentry, bricklaying and more.

In the spirit of providing a holistic experience for audiences, WorldSkills Australia has invited Skills West Expo to be part of the National Competition.

You can register your attendance for the 2014 WorldSkills Australia National Competition online. Further information is available on WorldSkills Australia's website.

Australian Council for Adult Literacy annual conference

2–4 October 2014, Gold Coast

The Queensland Council for Adult Literacy is hosting the 37th annual conference of the Australian Council for Adult Literacy (ACAL), Literacy: a learning spiral for life, in October 2014.

You are invited to come and join ACAL on the beautiful Gold Coast for this conference which will focus on the literacy or numeracy learner and discuss:

  • How do literacy and numeracy theories and research outcomes inform our practice?
  • How do national or state policies affect the individual learner?
  • How can we ensure that teachers and trainers have the knowledge and skills to meet individual needs?

ACAL is inviting interested parties to participate in the conference by giving a presentation, a workshop or a colloquium, or by joining in the discussion and networking.

A pre-conference forum, Frameworks: do they inhibit or enhance the literacy spiral?, will be held on 2 October. The forum will focus on frameworks such as Foundation Skills, the Australian Core Skills Framework, Core Skills for Work, Core Skills for Employment and Training, Skill Sets and the VET Practitioner Capability Framework, what they are, how they fit together, and how they relate to literacy and numeracy programmes and individual learners.

The conference’s international keynote speakers will be:

  • Dr Stephen Reder, Professor of Applied Linguistics at Portland State University
  • Professor Diana Coben PhD, Director of the National Centre of Literacy and Numeracy for Adults at the University of Waikato, New Zealand and Emeritus Professor of Adult Numeracy at King’s College London, UK.

Further conference information, keynote speaker profiles and the call for presentations, is on the conference's website.

Group Training Australia national conference

12–14 November 2014, Hobart

This year’s Group Training Australia national conference will celebrate the successes recognised through group training’s contribution to the delivery of jobs, the starting of careers and the building of communities. With this in mind, the theme of Jobs, Careers and Communities will recognise this success while also considering current and future challenges.

Speakers at the conference include:

  • The Hon Peter Underwood AC, Governor of Tasmania
  • Dr John Edwards, Board Member, Reserve Bank of Australia
  • Rod Camm, Managing Director, NCVER
  • Kevin Sheedy, former AFL coach.

Registration is now open, with an early bird rate available until 3 September.

For more information, please visit the conference website.

Australian Training Awards

21 November 2014, Adelaide

The Australian Training Awards presentation dinner event will be held in Adelaide, South Australia, on Friday 21 November 2014.

Registrations are now open through the website.

Professional development for training providers – NSW

Visit the NSW State Training Services website to view upcoming events and professional development for New South Wales training providers in 2014.


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What Works for LLN - free online library of language, literacy and numeracy training and professional development videos

Ideas That Work has just released another nine new language, literacy and numeracy (LLN) videos for the What Works for LLN training and professional development video library. These new videos contain practical LLN tips and good practice examples to help build vocational trainers’ and assessors’ capacity to support learners with LLN needs.

There are now 18 What Works videos available to view or download for free from the new What Works for LLN website. The What Works videos are grouped into three series:

  1. Introduction to LLN series (the original nine videos)
  2. Practical LLN tips for trainers and assessors series (nine NEW videos)
  3. Introduction to workplace LLN series (new videos coming in 2014).

These LLN videos can be used for:

  • your own professional development as a VET practitioner or workplace trainer
  • supporting the delivery of LLN specific units such as TAELLN401A / TAELLN411 Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills
  • LLN professional development for RTOs and their non-training staff
  • learners undertaking qualifications such as TAE40110 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

These videos were funded by the Australian Government’s Department of Industry.

To view or download a copy of these free What Works for LLN resources, please visit the website.

Access ready-made content through VET Commons today!

The VET Commons ready-made plugin is live and ready to use:

  • Simply add an activity or resource in your Moodle course
  • Select Ready-made Content and Add
  • Search VET Commons, preview resources and add them to your course.

What’s so good about VET Commons?

  • Easy access to free and paid ready-to-use content directly from your Moodle course
  • Source, search, locate and match content without the technical stress
  • Over 10 000 free images and learning objects
  • Digital content for your specific needs, including:
  1. images
  2. videos
  3. audio
  4. case studies
  5. presentations
  6. quizzes
  7. assessments
  8. eBooks, and more
  • Option to purchase just what you need – the chapter or the book
  • Save even more with an annual subscription.

Make your life easier!

Cengage Learning partners with VET Commons

Cengage Learning has partnered with eWorks to offer PDFs of its top ten vocational titles through the VET Commons ready-made plugin:

The Cengage team prides itself on speaking the same language as teachers, making content easy for you and your students to understand. Pick and choose what you need or sign up for an annual subscription and save on copyright licences.

Cengage Learning is a leading educational content, software and services company for the academic, professional and library markets worldwide. Cengage develops quality content specifically for your courses and especially for your sector. Access its content today through the VET Commons ready-made plugin.

VOCEDplus – latest research on VET, skills and workforce development issues

RSS subscribe button image

Stay in touch with current research, policy and practice across a broad range of areas affecting the VET sector in Australia and internationally.


Produced by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) and funded by the Commonwealth, state and territory governments, VOCEDplus is a free online resource offering international coverage of issues as well as an Australian focus. It currently holds over 57,000 entries, many providing instant access to full text via your desktop, with around 400 new titles added each month. Where possible, NCVER will supply items as requested according to its Conditions of Use.

You can search VOCEDplus using basic or advanced search or browse options. Topics covered include:

  • teaching and learning in the tertiary sector
  • assessment
  • professional development for practitioners
  • labour market trends
  • the relationships between education and work
  • skills and workforce development needs
  • pathways between VET and higher education
  • education industry partnerships in education and training
  • social inclusion.


Subscribe to new titles or Twitter on the home page for automated notifications.

Subscribe to VOCEDplus Highlights.

Subscribe to specific RSS feeds wherever you see the ‘Subscribe’ symbol above.

‘Purpose build’ feeds on your own topics, e.g. a feed on practitioners in VET can be set up in your browser using the following steps:

  1. From the Home Page click on Advanced Search
  2. Add the words practitioners to the top search box
  3. Click on the drop down menu and select the Title field
  4. Click on Search
  5. Click on Providers of education and training in the Subject facet box on the left of the results page
  6. Click on your browser’s RSS icon and subscribe to the feed.
  7. VOCEDplus services.

Expert reference service – for details visit the Client Service Charter or Ask a Librarian.

Citation tool – My Selection acts like a shopping cart, select records from search results or full record pages, email or save records in formats (e.g. author-date citation modelled on the Harvard style; tagged format for import into EndNote).

Value added products – these include:

To find out more, visit VOCEDplus.

Government Skills Australia – foundation skills resources

Government Skills Australia (GSA) has completed a range foundation skills resources to support the development of learning, reading, writing, oral communication and numeracy in work and training contexts. The resources include:

  • industry-specific foundation skills brochures outlining current policy initiatives and the key foundation skill demands within that industry at a range of employment levels e.g. low–mid–high level ‘core’ skills demands across a range of work roles
  • a suite of 11 short videos highlighting the need for specific core skills across a range of industries e.g. reading procedures and instructions in the workplace, oral communication skills for workplace meetings and numeracy skills for creating tables, graphs and charts
  • a professional development resource comprising a facilitator guide to outline a background to foundation skills initiatives, strategies to address foundation skills issues in a range of work and training contexts and industry-specific foundation skills data on the foundation skills demands of units of competency.

Please visit the website to download the resources or email a request for a printed copy.

Professional development resource – Meeting the Foundation Skills Demands of Training and Work

Government Skills Australia (GSA) has developed Meeting the Foundation Skills Demands of Training and Work as a professional development resource to raise awareness of foundation skills issues amongst workers and learners in the Australian context. Its primary aim is to support the key messages outlined in a range of foundation skills documents developed by GSA to support the newly endorsed foundation skills training package.

The guide is accompanied by short videos that build awareness of the language, literacy and numeracy or ‘core’ skill demands of tasks embedded in work roles within the government and community safety industries.

Vocational course developers, trainers and assessors are provided with information about how to identify the foundation skills embedded in both work and training contexts. They are easily disguised in a variety of tasks and roles so often go unnoticed. It also offers some strategies to develop an understanding of what foundation skills are, where they can be found and how they can be addressed in practical terms.

You can view and download the resource from GSA's website.

New one-stop-shop for digital content

Teachers and trainers who are new to e-learning, or those already using e-learning content developed through the National VET E-learning Strategy, are set to benefit from the newly launched National VET Content website.

This new site brings together thousands of freely available learning objects from the following national collections: Flexible Learning Toolboxes, Generic Skills, E-learning Innovations, Industry Integration of E-learning, and the National Digital Learning Resources Network.

You can find out more by visiting the Flexible Learning website.

Manufacturing Skills Australia (MSA) – have you seen the new literacy and numeracy resources?

MSA’s Putting the Jigsaw Together numeracy resources and the Making the Connections workshop for vocational education and training (VET) trainers have proved to be extremely popular. Over 900 RTOs, individual trainers and educators nationally have accessed the resources since their release.

Putting the Jigsaw Together is designed as a series of tool kits to support VET trainers with practical strategies to assist apprentices to develop their numeracy skills. Making the Connections is a two day workshop providing the key concepts of language, literacy and numeracy and foundation skills in VET training. Identifying core skills in a unit of competency and working with the Australian Core Skills Framework is included in the resource.

These resources are now available for FREE download at MSA's website. For further information contact Kathy Higgs, MSA Foundation Skills Project Officer, on 02 9955 5500 or via email.

Free ISC foundation skills resources now in one place

On behalf of the WELL/Foundation Skills network, IBSA has compiled into a single repository all the free foundation skills resources developed by each of the Industry Skills Councils to support VET practitioners. IBSA hopes you find it useful, and looks forward to receiving feedback.

Please visit the website for more information and to access the resources.

Tap Into Learning Today (TILT)

Are you looking for new ways to engage with adult learners? Perhaps you are interested in finding out more about Australia’s adult community education (ACE) sector? If so, the Tap Into Learning Today (TILT) website is for you.

The TILT website is Australia’s national communication strategy for ACE.

TILT provides information and resources for the ACE sector. It enables ACE providers to promote their services and engage adult learners in their communities. Through the website, providers can find resources and strategies to access potential learners, including templates for promotional materials and information about funding and professional development opportunities.

TILT also provides an avenue for individuals to find learning opportunities in areas such as community engagement and foundation skills. Links to key contacts, and the ability to locate ACE providers in their local areas are provided to direct individuals to the support they need.

The TILT Community Calendar is a great way to find out about ACE-related events. While you are there, check out some of the case studies and success stories of ACE projects in Australia through AceTV.

To find out more about TILT please visit the website.

Numeracy in Practice and Numeracy in Focus

Numeracy in Practice is a free professional development resource to support the development of practitioner numeracy proficiency skills and numeracy training skills including:

  • overcoming maths anxiety
  • building numeracy proficiency skills
  • building specialist adult numeracy teaching skills
  • building knowledge of numeracy in the workplace context.

This resource has been developed in response to the NCVER report Seeking the N in LLN. This report found that there may be a need to increase the capacity of the VET workforce to meet the numeracy skills needs of existing workers.

Numeracy in Practice includes:

  • a Numeracy in Practice guide with professional development activities
  • a numeracy proficiency assessment tool
  • six ‘snapshots’ exploring different workplace numeracy skills.

Numeracy in Focus is a free professional development resource to build practitioner workplace numeracy awareness including:

  • identifying maths anxiety
  • understanding the importance of numeracy
  • raising awareness of numeracy in the workplace context
  • raising awareness of workplace numeracy in the VET sector.

Numeracy is an important core skill. All practitioners must be up to date and confident in their own numeracy skills, their numeracy training skills and their understanding of typical workplace numeracy activities.

This resource is designed to be used by practitioners who:

  • have basic numeracy skills but need to update in respect to changing technology and numeracy practices
  • have basic numeracy skills but need to contextualise to the world of work
  • have numeracy skills but need to increase their numeracy confidence
  • are reluctant to assess and teach numeracy skills in the workplace
  • are not sure if their numeracy skills are sufficient to complete the Graduate Certificate in Adult Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice.

These resources were developed by Oggi Consulting and funded by the Australian Government.

For more information on these resources, email Tina Berghella at Oggi Consulting.

Free CPSISC energy efficiency resources

CPSISC received funding under the Australian Government’s Clean Energy and Other Skills Package. This Commonwealth funding has allowed CPSISC to undertake a series of interlinked projects to support VET and other higher education providers to build the skills, knowledge and capability to deliver clean energy services, products and advice to the Australian community and businesses.

The project has seen the development of a suite of resources to support the professional development needs of RTOs. The free downloadable resources also support the delivery and assessment of four new ‘Energy Efficiency’ units of competency recently endorsed and included in the CPC08 (Version 9) Construction, Plumbing and Services training package and the CPP07 (Version 14) Property Services training package.

These free energy efficiency resources available for download include:

  • Energy efficiency - fact sheets
  • Learner and assessment guides to support delivery and assessment of energy efficiency
  • Energy efficiency - RTO professional development kit (contains a professional development kit and PowerPoint presentation for RTOs).

To download a copy of these free resources, please visit CPSISC's website.


back to top

Australian Apprenticeships - provides quick and easy access to information regarding Australian Apprenticeships, including Australian Apprenticeships programs, employer incentives and support for apprentices during their apprenticeships.

Australian Apprenticeships and Traineeships Information Service and Australian Apprenticeships Pathways - provide apprenticeships and traineeships information and resources.

Australian Training Awards - the peak, national awards for the vocational education and training sector, recognising individuals, businesses and registered training organisations for their contribution to skilling Australia.

business.gov.au - offers businesses simple, practical and convenient access to all the government information, programmes and services they need to make running their business and skilling their employees easier.

Industry Skills Councils - bringing together industry, educators and governments, and uniting them on a common industry-led agenda for action on skills and workforce development.

LiteracyNet - information about Australian adult literacy activities and links to a range of additional program, professional development, resource and research sites (including training programs).

MySkills.gov.au - provides information about vocational education and training to future and current students, jobseekers and employers to help them make informed choices about training.

National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) - a not for profit company responsible for collecting, managing, analysing, evaluating and communicating research statistics about vocational education and training.

National Skills Week - provides a platform to highlight the opportunities and career pathways available through vocational education and training.

StudyAssist.gov.au - one stop shop for information on government assistance while studying. Students can use the website to determine their options for financing their tertiary study. The course search function allows students to look for courses offered by approved VET FEE-HELP providers.

training.gov.au - the official national register of information on training packages, qualifications, courses, units of competency and registered training organisations, developed for experienced training sector users.

WorldSkills Australia - working to promote and build a skills culture by inspiring young people, celebrating skills excellence and providing opportunities to showcase trade and skill talent through competitions held on a regional, national and international level.


If you would like to provide feedback, supply an article for inclusion in the next edition or join our list of subscribers, please email skillsatwork@industry.gov.au. The next edition will be published in October 2014. Submissions are due by 18 September 2014.