TDA Newsletter | 28 July 2014

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ASQA reveals failure rate among training providers

More than a quarter of all audits conducted by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) since it was established in 2011 have identified serious compliance problems with registered training organisations (RTOs).

Its latest Provider Rountable report shows that ASQA completed 3,652 audits between July 2011 and June 2014, with 72% compliant, 22% non-compliant and 6% discontinued or awaiting a decision from an ASQA Commissioner.

The audits resulted in ASQA refusing 134 applications to set up a new RTO, 124 applications to re-register an existing RTO and 380 applications to add a new course.

Almost 7% of applications from existing providers to re-register are being refused by ASQA and almost 17% of applications from people seeking to establish a new provider are being rejected.

See the ASQA report: Provider roundtable: Regulatory activity & key issues: 1 July 2011 – 30 June 2014

VET assessments causing confusion and uncertainty

There are some basic misunderstanding about some of the key elements in quality assessment in vocational education and training (VET), according to new research from the National Centre for Vocational Education and Research (NCVER).

The use of techniques such as ‘moderation’ and ‘validation’ in student assessments cause confusion and uncertainty among trainers and assessors, the report says. It also highlights some of the challenges in involving employers in the validation of assessments.

The study examined the issue of quality in assessments by looking at Certificate III qualifications in aged care, electro-technology (electrical) and business.

See more.

What will the future look like in 2020?

Business futurist Morris Miselowski will be a keynote speaker at this year’s TDA National Conference to be held at Sheraton the Park, Sydney on 1 & 2 September.

Some have placed him amongst the world’s leading business futurists. Others refer to him as one of Australia’s most powerful and unforgettable presenters.

Morris has consulted to some of the world’s top companies and organisations, worked alongside thousands of global CEOs and decision-makers He has also lectured for a number of leading universities and TAFE institutes, conducted countless media interviews and presented to sell-out audiences all over the world, including an appearance on the TEDx stage.

Morris’ presentations are famously energetic, engaging, and interactive. They’re tailored to the audience, teeming with the latest content and up to the minute insights.

To access the draft conference program visit

Sydney TAFE international student wins prestigious award

Brazilian international student, Maycon Rocha Calvacante, (pictured) who studied Tourism at Sydney TAFE has won the prestigious Council of International Students Australia (CISA) International Student of the Year Award in the VET Category.

The Award acknowledged Maycon’s commitment to study and his inspiration to other students.

“I am proud to receive this award from CISA. Studying in Australia allowed me to dive into a sea of unique culture and beautiful history,” Maycon said in an acceptance message.

Maycon also won the Sydney TAFE Student Excellence Award for International Student of the Year. As Maycon had already returned to Brazil, Sydney TAFE sponsored Kenric Nguyen to attend CISA’s 2014 National Conference in Adelaide and accept the award on his behalf.

Maycon will continue his involvement with TAFE NSW as an ambassador for their international student program.

NCVER announces research grants

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) has announced seven research grants awarded to address a number of important education and training issues

The seven research grants are:

  • Shedding light: private RTOs training for young early school leavers – Lead researcher: Dr George Myconos, Brotherhood of St Laurence
  • Consistency with flexibility in the Australian national training system – Lead researcher: Dr Kaye Bowman, Kaye Bowman Consulting
  • Employer-supported training: prevalence, enablers and barriers – Lead researcher: Dr Chandra Shah, Centre for the Economics of Education and Training, Monash University
  • Employer training in a changed environment – Lead researcher: Professor Erica Smith, Federation University Australia
  • Skills transfer, re-skilling and training of older workers in response to restructuring – Lead researcher: Professor Victor Callan, Callan Consulting Group
  • Cross-occupational skill transferability: challenges and opportunities in a changing environment – Dr Darryn Snell, RMIT University
  • The effects of the Victorian training guarantee on up-skilling later in life – Lead researcher: Dr Justin van de Ven, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research.

National Skills Week program unveiled

More than 500 events across Australia will be held as part of the celebrations for National Skills Week (August 25-31).

The primary focus of National Skills Week is to promote the diversity, possibilities and options for career outcomes, and to recognise the teachers, students, business and training providers who make it happen.  This year’s theme is “The Magical Mystery Tour of Skills”.

Events will be hosted by TAFEs, RTOs, industry groups, businesses and individuals.

See more.

Global perspectives on tertiary education innovation

LH Martin Institute for Tertiary Education Leadership and Management is hosting two interactive workshops featuring leading international speakers on innovation in education.

Harnessing the power of entrepreneurial action in tertiary education institutions. Guest speaker: Fintan Donohue, CEO of the Gazelle Group

29 August 2014, Sydney

The Gazelle Group is a collaborative cluster of innovative and entrepreneurial further education colleges (FE) colleges in the UK.

Fintan Donohue has been the driving force behind the Gazelle Group; his work has recently been recognised with the awarding of an OBE.

Find out more and view full program

The economics of education: the pursuit of prestige and reputation to drive strategy and system performance. Guest speaker: Dr. Charles A. Goldman – Senior Economist, RAND, and Professor of Economics, Pardee RAND Graduate School (PRGS)

26 August 2014, Melbourne

Higher education in America is seen as a success story, educating unprecedented numbers of students and producing an unrivalled research base. Yet there is concern that the sector is inefficient or self-serving and ill equipped to adapt to a changing environment.

Dr Charles A. Goldman of RAND Corporation, as part of a two year study examining higher education as an industry, has analysed how institutions serve four identifiable markets that generate revenue (student enrolment, research funding, public fiscal support, and private giving).

Find out more and view full program

Innovation award deadline extended

The deadline for entry in the $65,000 The Australian Innovation Challenge awards, honouring excellence in fields from minerals and energy to ICT and community services, has been extended until August 11.

The Challenge is run by The Australian, in association with Shell, with the support of the federal Department of Industry.

The awards, now in their fourth year, are helping to drive breakthroughs to commercialisation or adoption. This year, a Young Innovators category is open to students under the age of 21 and carries a $5000 cash prize.

The online entry form and details of the awards, including category definitions, the judging criteria, the judging panel, supplementary material requirements, the entry procedure, rules and stories on past winners, are on the awards website.

Diary Dates

Vision 2020 – TDA National Conference 2014
TAFE Directors Australia

DATE: 1-2 September 2014
LOCATION: Sheraton on the Park, Sydney, NSW
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Teaching & Learning Conference 2014
VET Development Centre

DATE: 4-5 September 2014
LOCATION: RACV Club Torquay, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

ACE National Conference
DATE: 11-12 September 2014
LOCATION: Adelaide
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

VETnetwork Australia 2014
Biennial National Conference

DATE: 17-19 September 2014
LOCATION: Darwin Convention Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2014 WorldSkills Australia National Competition
DATE: 18, 19 & 20 September 2014
LOCATION: Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australian International Education Conference
Inventing the Future

DATE: 7-10 October 2014
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

AUSTAFE 2014 Annual Conference
DATE: 8-10 October 2014
LOCATION: Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australasian Genomic Technologies Association (AGTA)
2014 Conference

DATE: 12-15 October 2014
LOCATION: Crown Promenade Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Group Training Australia
2014 National Conference

DATE: 12-14 November 2014
LOCATION: Grand Chancellor Hotel, Hobart
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2014 B/HERT Awards
Business Higher Education Round Table

DATE: 20 November 2014
LOCATION: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.



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