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Less students in publicly funded training in 2013: preliminary data

NCVER     |     29 May 2014

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The total number of students enrolled in publicly funded training for 2013 decreased 3.4% to 1.88 million students from 1.94 million in 2012.

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The Australian vocational education and training statistics: Students and courses 2013 – preliminary data, published by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER), provide a snapshot of training activity taken from an annual collection of student enrolments.

Rod Camm,  NCVER managing director, says that NCVER’s preliminary analysis suggests the decrease in overall student numbers may be partly the result of the decline in apprenticeships.

New Industry Department data reveals the number of apprentices and trainees in Australia fell 13% to 392,200 last year, as commencements plunged 26% and 119,900 apprentices dropping out of training.

Trade commencements — for traditional apprenticeships such as carpentry, hairdressing and plumbing — rose by 2.3%, to 98,300 at the end of last year. Traineeships for other on-the-job training — including bricklaying, childcare, aged care and clerical or sales work — fell 37.5%.

Only South Australia reported a rise in student numbers (up 16.3%), whereas the number of students remained the same in Tasmania and declined in all the other states and territories.

NCVER attributes the increases reported in South Australia as most likely the result of the introduction of Skills for All that took effect in July 2012

Just over half (51.8%) of all students were enrolled in Certificates III and IV in 2013, similar to 2012. However, more students enrolled in a Certificate I qualification last year, up 8.6% to 101 000 students from 93 000 in 2012.

Reflecting the drop in student numbers, hours of delivery also declined in all state and territories except South Australia in 2013.
 

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