Enhancing training advantage for remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learners

John Guenther, Melodie Bat, Anne Stephens, Janet Skewes, Bob Boughton, Frances Williamson, Sandra Wooltorton, Melissa Marshall, Anna Dwyer

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned reportpeer-review

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Across Australia, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have embraced vocational education and training (VET), with participation in VET increasing, particularly at higher qualification levels. This report shines the spotlight on remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learner engagement in, and completion of, vocational education.
The proportion of remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learners holding VET qualifications is growing and the evidence shows they are engaging in VET in increasing numbers; however, qualification completion rates remain low and employment outcomes are not noticeably improving. Of real concern is that vocational training is not demonstrably translating into employment for many remote community learners.
Key to increasing the translation of training into employment is determining how retention and completion in VET can be improved, in conjunction with identifying how VET can enhance the employability of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders living in remote communities. Also of importance is understanding the indicators of success — other than completion — and how these can be used to evaluate the outcomes of training in remote communities.
This project focused on providing insight by investigating five unique training programs. Specific sites were selected across remote Australia, each of which was considered to be successful in training and training completions in their respective communities. In each site students, trainers/training providers, employers, job service providers, community organisations and cultural advisors were interviewed to gain a wide range of perspectives on the factors that contribute to retention in training programs, as well as the indicators of successful training.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAdelaide
PublisherNational Centre for Vocational Education Research
Number of pages44
ISBN (Print)9781925173840
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

With the exception of the Commonwealth Coat of Arms, the Department’s logo, any material protected by a trade mark and where otherwise noted all material presented in this document is provided under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/au> licence.
The details of the relevant licence conditions are available on the Creative Commons website (accessible using the links provided) as is the full legal code for the CC BY 3.0 AU licence <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/legalcode>.
The Creative Commons licence conditions do not apply to all logos, graphic design, artwork and photographs. Requests and enquiries concerning other reproduction and rights should be directed to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).


  • remote communities
  • education
  • training


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