Friday, August 17, 2018

NVCER no frills and NZ VET research forum - day 3 morning

Day 2 morning presentations and summary of evening

Dinner, welcome and presentation from Jon Black, TAFE NSW, extolled the merits of VET but provided dire stats on consideration of VEt by Australian school leavers as being only 10% for females and 16% for males (sigh).
Bruce Callaghan, Australian Council for Private Education and Training, introduced the need for VET systems to reform as learner needs are for just in time learning, completed in short bites. Exampled general practitioners in Asia, Gulf and Australia who supplement their formal medical training with micro learning. Called for greater response to these needs by working together across sectors, qualifications that make sense, responsive to future needs and relevant to learners. 
The night’s speaker is Kevin Sheedy, who is  an Australian football pLayer and AFLHall of  fame legend, apprenticeship ambassador and plumber. Shared his story and the importance of apprenticeship. 

A cool and sunny morning for a quick walk to the conference. The proceedings begins with ministerial address from the Honorable Karen Andrews, assistant minister for vocational education and skills. Reiterated the importance of VET to prepare people for the coming future. Australian VET well regarded internationally with the majority of graduates attaining employment. Employment shifting to high skills demands and also shifting to a replacement phase of baby boomers retiring. Recommended the use of JAROD to assist people in finding work which fits their attributes and for careers advise. Preparation for industry 4.0 a key for moving forward. Important to reestablish the status of VET as a key pathway for all to qualifications and employment. Launched an extended tuition fees protection to all students if provider falls over. Also an increase in the skilling Australia fund to increase apprenticeships and training in key industries. 

Keynote is with Dr. Andrew Charlton from AlphaBeta on moving from fear to action on the future of work. Summarised the current media on AI, robotics etc. and jobs being changed or lost. Some well-founded but there are opportunities as well. However, young people taking their first job are going to see many of these jobs disappear. Need to identify what will change and what will not. Shift of types of jobs being lost to Technology from agriculture to manufacturing to service sector. Need to reskill, upskill and learn new skills to deal with automation, globalisation, longer lives, urbanisation and changing job preferences. Currently Australian workers would have changed occupations 2.4 times. Workers not changing jobs are seeing a change in their job tasks. Lifelong learning is the norm, young Australian spend 3-4 hours a week learning to keep up with job demands. Need to understand what, when and how we learn.
What: Employers demanding more digital, creative problem solving and interaction skills. In general, knowledge, skills more readily automated when compared to attributes / characteristics.  Characteristics include empathy, creativity, leadership, originality, social orientation, cooperation, integrity etc. shift from firm specific skills and knowledge or human capital to generalised human capital.
When: lifelong learning will be the norm. Increase in just in time learning. Mid career learning needs will have to be met.
How: flexible, appropriately funding and relevant learning. 

Address from Ian Rowe, acting assistant deputy director sector services, Ako Aotearoa. Introduced the role of Ako Aotearoa in the NZ Tertiary sector. Provided an overview of the origin and objectives. New themes going forward are professional standards, networks and communities of practice and Maori and Pacifica learner success, organisational structure and business model, knowledge base and adult literacy and numeracy and cultural capability. Summarised the impact evaluation undertaken on all funded projects and shared examples of several VET projects. 

Morning tea is with poster presentations.

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