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We have seen very significant declines in VET activity since 2015 and a further decline as COVID-19 emerged in 2020, however the declines in completions were more muted (that is, much of the decline in student numbers was in those not completing a full qualification). Of course, this decline in VET activity reflects structural change that was responding to the needs of the labour market. Certainly, university education has been expanding at VET’s expense and we have seen degrees become the entry level qualification for many occupations.  
In looking at the impact of COVID-19 on apprentices and trainees the government appeared to have addressed any short-term declines in numbers, however we are not so optimistic about the rest of VET. This paper concentrates on VET qualification completions at the diploma or higher level, and Certificates III and IV. Lower level and non-AQF qualifications were assumed to be preparatory in nature and of less relevance to skills formation.

Discussion paper

Download The VET sector post COVID-19 (PDF-543kb)

Download The VET sector post COVID-19 (Word-184kb)

April 2022

Tom Karmel
Mackenzie Research Institute

All information is correct at the time of printing but subject to change.

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