Research Roundup – February 2018

Hello everyone.  We are continuing to conduct research into vocational education & training, and have experienced a lot of exciting moments during February.  I will share some of them in this month’s Research Roundup.

Conference Presentations

We are very happy to announce that we have been invited to present at two VET conferences this year.  They are the Australian Vocational Education Training Research Association (AVETRA) conference and National VET Conference – VELG Training.

Please find more details about these two presentations below.

AVETRA vocational education & training Research

Our topic for the AVETRA conference is “Alignment of Australian and international Vocational Education Training (VET) trainer preparation programmes”.  As the title suggests it focuses on aligning Australian TAE40116 trainer training curriculum with the trainer training curricula of Sri Lanka, China, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Philippines.

This will help us understand to what degree could the Australian curricula address the needs of VET trainers and the VET sector in these countries. The planning to include the VET, TAE curricula of Papua New Guinea and East Timor in this comparative analysis is still underway.

This research will be a collaborative research effort of  Fortress Learning  and Colombo Plan Staff College.

VELG Conference vocational education & training Research


Our topic for the VELG conference is “Internationalisation in Vocational Education Training”.  

VELG LogoThis presentation intends to address a range of aspects of internationalisation of Australian Vocational Education and Training (VET). The focus will be the Australian government’s International Skills Training (IST) program and the experience of those RTOs who are licensed to deliver it.

The views of VET practitioners, researchers, educators, students and international education policymakers will be canvassed to gain practical insights into the implementation of the IST program: its advantages and barriers to delivery.  From this, insights will be drawn from which we may learn how to ensure the sustainability and acceptance of not just the IST program, but other Australian VET programs, when delivered internationally.


Other Research Projects

We are also delighted to let you know about several other research projects we have planned to conduct with Dr. Sonal Nakar, one of our collaborative research partners from Griffith University. We highly appreciate Dr Nakar’s involvement in these and her contribution will be highly valued.

World Federation of Colleges 2018 World Congress

While these projects are still in their infancy, we are hoping to share them as part of the World Congress of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics in October 2018.

WFPC Pic vocational education & training Research

NCVER Working Groups

We are currently exploring with the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) how Fortress Learning can be included within a Research Working Group (RWG).

We will be focusing on providing Australian VET, TAE students with the best possible experience they can obtain through vocational education training. Even though both these projects sound similar on the surface, there will be different directions and depth that will make them unique.

Overall, we will compare current students’ expectations and the real outcomes of graduate students in terms of their gained employability skills which will provide insight in determining what is needed to improve student outcomes. Since the views of VET students’ are not well known in this sector, the results of this research will provide some suggestions for improving students’ engagement in VET sector and also employability related development.  This will also provide certainty about the extent to which assumptions about VET training are reflected by the reality experienced by VET graduates.

I would also like to say a big thank you to all Fortress Learning students who have sent their consent to participate in the data collection process. We all understand how important your perceptions are in developing the VET industry.

Fingers crossed until we’ve been accepted in these as well.

Perceptions of VET with Griffith University

Griffith University vocational education & training ResearchWe have also been privileged to work with Professor Stephen Billett, the Project Director, from Griffith University. Their main focus was to examine the perceptions of VET held by school students, parents, school educators and other important influencers that may impede young people from taking a VET pathway that might be more suitable for them than university. So, we were able to provide our services in data collection from parents.

Thank you for being with us and we will bring you more exciting news in our next Research Roundup.





Dr Chula Seneviratne

Research Manager

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