This study investigated several aspects of the value and funding of diplomas and advanced diplomas in community services and health (CSH). It reviewed the extent of training at this level, various data on the employment of persons with these qualifications and the ways training is funded. A number of key questions are addressed in this paper. What is the value of diploma and advanced diploma qualifications in responding to the needs of the CSH industries? How are diplomas and advanced diplomas currently being funded? What is the best way to fund higher level qualifications within the CSH industries? Key findings include: student numbers in diplomas and advanced diplomas have been rising in CSH but declining in most other industries; employment in CSH has been rising rapidly and within CSH the proportion of persons with diplomas or advanced diplomas has been rising; the mandating of minimum qualifications for particular occupations has been an important factor in the increased employment of persons with diplomas in CSH; most of the training for diplomas is provided in government supported training, however, of the small numbers taking advanced diplomas, only a minority are in government supported places; about 13 per cent of all government recurrent expenditure on [vocational education and training] VET is made on CSH Training Package courses; and of that 13 per cent about a third is spent on training for diplomas and advanced diplomas.
This report looks at whether pre-apprenticeships increase the potential supply of tradespeople, with a special focus on electrotechnology, automotive and engineering students. It found that pre-apprenticeships have been used in Australia for many years and are widely regarded as a valuable strategy for increasing the supply and quality of potential apprentices. Pre-apprenticeships are favoured by employers because they weed out unsuitable candidates and improve retention, while apprentices see them as a useful way of gaining experience in the trade.