Vocational education and training (VET) and apprenticeships
Vocational education and training (VET) provides training and skills for work. For many jobs in Australia, you need a VET qualification. At the lower level, these are called Certificates and Diplomas, but VET providers can also provide degrees.
This page explains the system for different educational qualifications in Australia.
Different organisations provide VET qualifications. There are Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutions, which are funded by governments. Other organisations, called Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), are run privately. RTOs can offer some courses that are funded by government.
Another kind of vocational education and training is an apprenticeship or traineeship. An apprenticeship or traineeship means that you will be learning while you are working to complete a qualification. You can also qualify for more advanced training after completing an apprenticeship. You can combine paid work and structured training on the job or off the job – or both.
You can find out more information on vocational education and training, including apprenticeships, on the following websites.
This national directory provides information on training courses for school leavers, students, apprentices, and employers.
Australian Apprenticeships and Traineeships provides information and tools for those looking to become or to hire apprentices and trainees.
The state or territory websites also provide more information, including about help with costs:
- NSW: Skills NSW
- Victoria: Victorian Skills Gateway
- Queensland: Queensland Skills Gateway
- South Australia: Skills SA
- Western Australia: Vocational education
- Tasmania: Skills Tasmania
- Northern Territory: VET NT
- ACT: ACT Skills
Vocational education and training for refugees and people seeking asylum
Victoria, New South Wales, and the ACT all offer help to refugees on temporary protection visas and people seeking asylum and refugees with vocational educational and training. As these people are not permanent residents, they are not generally able to get the kind of financial help that someone with a permanent visa or a citizen can get.
The NSW government offers fee-free training for refugees and people seeking asylum for apprenticeships and traineeships, and certificates up to a Certificate IV level. It also runs a Refugee Employment Support Program.
The Asylum Seeker Vocational Education Training (ASVET) program is a Victorian State Government funded initiative for refugees on temporary visas and people seeking asylum to get vocational qualifications.
The Queensland Government helps with the costs of some training programs, including for certificates, apprenticeships and diplomas.
The South Australian Government helps with the costs of some training programs for refugees, including those on temporary protection or bridging visas.
The Western Australian Government helps with the costs of some training programs for refugees, including those on temporary protection or bridging visas. This includes some free courses and training pathways.
Australian Capital Territory
Both the ACT’s JobTrainer program and the Australian Apprenticeships program can be accessed by refugees in the ACT, including those on temporary visas or people seeking asylum, if they are at least 17 and not in school, or not in work.