Difference between studying at high school, university and TAFE

Moving from school to further education can be exciting but also challenging. The learning environment is different and what people expect of you will be different. Here are some of the differences which might be useful to consider when you are planning where and how to study:



Career counselling & advice

Most schools, training providers and universities can offer some level of career advice and information. This can help you in deciding where you would like to work and so what study you need to do to get there.  There is also some useful information online that can help you.

For career advice and information, check out My Future http://myfuture.edu.au/ for tools to help you think about you interests, your skills, and education and training options. Information about work conditions is also provided to help you decide your future career plans. You need to create a log in for this service but there are many useful resources available so it is worth doing.

This website Youth Central http://www.youthcentral.vic.gov.au/jobs-careers is a government website with information about career profiles, applying for jobs, writing resume and job interview skills. Information regarding employment rights, volunteering, work experience or staring your own business are also provided. The Planning Your Career section of Youth Central might be especially useful. It provides a link to the Willing and Able Mentor program for people with a disability.

Click on the following links for a VET Career Action Plan and other useful information in helping to decide what you would like to study:




Explore courses

There are hundreds of different courses available, so where do you start? Career counsellors, teachers and other professionals might suggest some courses or places to study. You can also have a look at these two government websites to search for courses. They also have some tips to help you pick the right course and training provider.



Qualification levels

One area that can be confusing is all the different qualification levels that are available. This page gives you brief explanation of these qualifications.

More information about qualifications levels, click it... read more

Studying options


There are many options for studying, including short courses, apprenticeships/traineeships, studying online, Learn Local as well as vocational education and training (TAFE and private colleges).

There are also options for mature age student or early school leavers so it is worth doing some research to find the options that suit you best:

One option you may want to consider is studying online. Here is Darren Beath talking about his experience with an online course:

In the following video Natalie explores some of the options available to her in TAFE:

Learn Local

Another option to consider is a Learn Local. Learn Locals provide a range of community education and training programs. They try to work with local communities to meet local community learning needs. They offer many short courses, which might be useful if you want to just try a course before you commit to a more expensive, accredit course. Classes are often small so you have more time with your classmates and teachers. Click on the links below for more information about Learn Locals:





Apprenticeships and traineeships

Apprenticeships and Traineeship

  • Apprenticeship and traineeship means you can start working and studying at the same time.
  • Studying can happen at workplace or vocational training provider such as TAFE
  • You will receive wage and other employee benefit as well as completing a Certificate II, III or IV.
  • Students can start an apprenticeship or traineeship while at school, or once they have left school
  • There are many apprenticeship and traineeship pathways are available, inclusing full-time or part-time programs.
  • Although you might start on a low wage with an apprenticeship, your income can increase very quickly once you are fully qualified.

Click on these links for further information:





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