VET – Part 1 – Why bother with VET? Is it important?

The Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector is of primary importance in the Australian and international education system.

But is it seen that way?

Vocational Education and Training is exactly that – vocational. It supports and develops students to be ready to enter industry as job-ready graduates. This means they are equipped and ready to work in their chosen industry and the VET system is geared to provide the knowledge and skills to enable them to do so.

VET is focused on competence. It honours the fact that a student can become competent through a variety of means. It doesn’t matter how that competence is achieved, as long as it is established. If it is established, then it is recognised (e.g. through prior learning or life experience) if it is equivalent to the level at which the job is expected to be performed.

VET graduates work in a plethora of industries across all areas of society. They work in small business, complementary health-care, accounting, counselling, aged care, child care, fitness, a variety of trades and countless other areas. In fact there were 7512 programs delivered in VET in 2015 in Australia. There are 4930 Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) in Australia (as at the end of 2015). (Data from National Centre for Vocational Education Research – NCVER.)

It can be seen from this that VET educates members of the public in areas that are very important to the function of our society as a whole.

However, VET is often currently seen, at least in Australia, as a second rate cousin to higher education or a university degree. Why is this? And does it have to be the case?

In the following parts of this series, we explore the immense value that VET brings to students as well as industry, and how we can shape it to be recognised as a true leader in education.


This article was first published in Evolve College’s Studymassage News.

Going beyond the minimum standards – Part 2 – Education

In Part 1 of this series, we explored the standards we set as a society and started to expose that they are actually at a very minimal level.

We looked in Part 1 at Work Health and Safety (WHS) – and saw that what we accept WHS means is actually far lower than what it truly means in the workplaces we share and visit.

This week, we look at education. We accept that education is teaching us something we do not know, and delivering us a qualification or piece of paper we can hang on our wall that says that we are competent and have achieved something. An accolade, yes, but is that really what education is? Continue reading “Going beyond the minimum standards – Part 2 – Education”

Going beyond the minimum standards – Part 1

Have we paused to reflect on the fact that we all accept the standards we call the baseline in life?

Our standards apply to all areas of life. They apply to legal standards, ethical standards and general benchmarks of behaviour we will accept and those we will not.

These standards are necessary. They are for the safety and protection of all in our society, and they have an important part to play. However, are they everything?

For instance, we have Work Health and Safety standards that are enshrined in legislation, which require our work places to be safe and without risk of injury or harm to anyone in the workplace. This is obviously needed. For instance, if we operate a massage or other health-care clinic, we are obliged to ensure that there are no tripping hazards, that clients can get onto and off the table without injury, and so forth. But do our standards equate to a true standard, or do they represent something less?

We can look at our Work Health and Safety standards, for instance, and say that they are about protecting workplaces from risk. We can also say that we comply with those standards because we do not want to face the very hefty fines that are imposed for those who breach them.

Thus our standard could be seen to be – compliance with the law and avoiding penalties for non-compliance.

However, the fact is, that is a very minimum standard.

In Part 2 of this series, we look at how the standards we set are actually at a very minimum level, and how we can all play our part in setting and representing a much higher benchmark for our society. When we do, the benefits flowing back to us all, are immense.


This article was first published in Evolve College’s Studymassage News.

Life-long learning

Life is an opportunity for learning. Life-long learning in fact, which is what Evolve College represents in all of its courses and endeavours.

We can learn formally, through accredited or nationally recognised education, such as the courses which Evolve College offers in massage, or we can learn informally, through non-accredited education, such as Chakra-puncture.

However learning is not just about ‘doing a course’. We also are forever offered the opportunity to learn and grow as individuals, developing ourselves continuously – if we choose to. When we look at it like that, we realise that we can learn through everything in life, whether this be our study, our work, as well as our relationships (professional and personal) across all of life. The more we learn and open ourselves to truly learning, the more we grow – or evolve. And that, then, has an impact across everything else in life.

So how open are we to learning? Continue reading “Life-long learning”

The VET Sector: A 2017 Reflection – Part 2

What is next?

Following streamlining of Training Packages, and the overhaul of the Commonwealth funding of VET industry qualifications, where do we go from here?

What is next for the VET industry?

RTOs are subject to increasing regulation and compliance requirements and there is much talk amongst representatives in the industry of the burden of these requirements and the distraction they create from getting on with the job of training and assessment.

RTO representatives have stated (in private or networking conversations at industry events and conferences) that a number of corporations (including large and/or international corporates with offices in Australia), sick of the extent of regulatory burden, have decided to implement their own workplace training styled specifically for their workplace needs, outside the VET system. The veracity of these comments is unproven but noted here for consideration, as if it is true, it is not a good reflection on the Australian VET system. Continue reading “The VET Sector: A 2017 Reflection – Part 2”

The VET Sector and Massage – VET means Job Ready

In our recent article on Massage Education – VET or University, we looked at what level of higher education was most appropriate for massage. We discussed how, in Evolve College’s view, the level of education required in massage is very appropriately set at the Vocational Education and Training (VET) level – at a minimum. This week we look more closely at the VET sector and the benefits it provides.

Requirements of massage education Continue reading “The VET Sector and Massage – VET means Job Ready”

Massage Education – VET or University?

One of the topics currently being discussed in the massage industry is the level of qualification which should be required to practise massage.

Should massage be offered only by universities?

It has been suggested in some circles that massage should require a degree level qualification (offered by university). In this article, we set out the reasons why we disagree with this suggested approach.

To Evolve College, massage is a proven and very strong option for people seeking support for their body. It is sought as a modality when people are stressed, overwhelmed, in tension (relaxation massage), and it is also sought out when people have injuries, pain or problem areas in their body (remedial massage).

The importance of choice and accessibility in health-care

Continue reading “Massage Education – VET or University?”