Karen Lomas
July 25, 2023

Australian Universities Accord Review – What does it mean for fees and access to degree courses?

I have been reading the Australian Universities Accord Review with interest. I’ve also read what Andrew Norton has to say in response to the interim report of the Australian Universities Accord Review.

I wasn’t a fan of Scott Morrison’s policy change, which made Arts degrees dreadfully expensive and discounted courses on the basis of skills shortages. Just because a degree course is ‘cheaper, doesn’t mean that this is a reason to choose it. Surely some level of interest in the subject, learning style appropriateness and job outcomes is required. So I’m glad things might change on the basis of this review.

As to the claim that there need to be more university graduates in Australia, I’d be interested in understanding is how it has been determined that there is a need for more university graduates in order to meet future job skills requirements. After all, according to the 2022 National Skills Commission (NSC) Skills Priority List the shortages appear to be predominantly in technicians and trades workers, community and personal services workers, machinery operators, labourers and drivers. Do all of these workers need bachelor degrees? Possibly some but maybe not a significant percentage of these.

TAFE Certificate Courses & Diplomas

Are we to suppose that Certificate III, Certificate IV, Diploma and Advanced Diploma skills training are insufficient to train students over shorter periods and incurring lower debts? Perhaps. However, some say that for skills acquisition in areas such as IT can be gained more quickly through project-based and mentorship skills training such that an individual might be job ready in that area within 6 months.

In the UK, many BTEC Higher Nationals are a great alternative to studying for a university degree, as it’s fair to say that conceptual and analytical learning is not for everyone. What’s more, some young adults would prefer, or need to, enter the workforce sooner than others.

Anyway, this is interesting reading. I agree with Norton, Professor in the Practice of Higher Education Policy, Australian National University , that the Australian Federal Government should not revert to a flat student contribution rate. This would be disadvantageous to many groups. Norton’s suggestions, which as outlined in an article in The Conversation are worth consideration, I’m sure. This requires

Read on and then if you have a question for me, simply contact me at www.karenyourcareercoach.com/contact/

university # jobready #graduates #jobs #careers #bachelordegree #tafe #btechighernationals #uk #australia #university #highereducation #students #careerdevelopment #careercoach #careerguidance #careercounselling #karenyourcareercoach

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