2 min read

Debunking Myths About TAFE and VET in Australia

by Tenzing Tsewang



Have you been considering the idea of taking TAFE or VET courses in Australia to further your career? If so, you may have heard some things about this path that aren't true. Join us as we debunk some of the common falsehoods in circulation to show you the value that's on offer.

Hi there, young adventure-seekers and welcome to this blog that focuses on the important decision you have to make when leaving high school. More specifically, we look at the world of Vocational Education and Training (VET) and Technical and Further Education Training (TAFE) courses.

For many young people in Australia, the path to a successful future often centres around obtaining a university degree, but that's not the only way to go about things. That's why we now look at the incredible opportunities that TAFE and VET training can offer.

Those who have a university-focused mindset can sometimes look down on these alternative educational pathways, resulting in a number of misconceptions being spread by word of mouth. Here we also seek to debunk some of those myths about a potential option that gets you into the workforce more quickly while offering valuable practical experience.

What Are VET & TAFE Courses?

Do a little online research of your own, and you'll find that Vocational Education and Training (VET) and Technical and Further Education (TAFE) are essential components of the education system. They provide a wide range of courses that prepare you for specific industries and careers within them.

So, let's examine what's on offer.

VET Courses

Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses are designed to provide hands-on, practical training for specific jobs. Typically shorter in duration than a university degree, they include qualifications that range from Certificate I to IV, as well as Diplomas. The industries you can train for are wide and varied and include (but are not limited to) the following…

  • Animal Care and Horse Industry
  • Aviation and Aircraft Maintenance
  • Building, Construction and Trades
  • Carpentry, Joinery and Furniture
  • Accounting and Finance
  • Business and Marketing
  • Automotive
  • Arts

Each one offers different levels of knowledge and skills, and they're also often taken by people looking to work in trades like IT, hospitality and healthcare. VET courses also include a practical element that involves on-the-job training, as well as offering Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) that allows you to gain credits for skills you already have.

TAFE Courses 

As their name suggests, Technical and Further Education (TAFE) courses have a more technical focus. Taught across the network of Technical and Further Education institutes across Australia, they then to be concerned with trades relating to creative industries and those that deal with advanced technology.

TAFE courses are essentially a subset of VET courses, which is why the terms are often used interchangeably. As such, courses follow the same structure; Certificate I to IV and Diploma and get you job-ready much sooner than an undergraduate or even postgraduate degree.

They're Shorter, More Flexible & Less Expensive Than Uni!

There are a bunch of benefits that come with VET/TAFE training in comparison to university degrees, in addition to the hands-on experience already mentioned. Take the TAFE route, and you also get to enjoy a wide range of advantages.

  • Shorter courses - While a uni course will usually take between 3-4 years of full-time study, VET courses are often no more than 1-2 years, meaning you're earning money sooner.
  • Quality Education - TAFE institutes are regulated and quality-assured, ensuring that all students receive a high standard of education.
  • Job Market Demand -  Many industries value TAFE qualifications, meaning that TAFE graduates are sought after in the job market.
  • Variety of Learning Styles: TAFE offers a range of learning options, including full-time, part-time, online, and workplace-based courses, catering to diverse learning styles and needs.
  • Lower Cost: TAFE courses are often more affordable than university degrees, with government subsidies and concessional rates for eligible students.

The great thing about VET courses is that they allow you to keep your options open. Sometimes, VET training can lead to students going to university, but only if they want to.

Debunking Common Myths About VET & TAFE Courses

When you don't have all the facts on a particular subject, it's easy to get taken in by things you hear. So, let's shine a light on some of the myths that you might have heard spread about VET and TAFE training.

Myth: TAFE/VET courses are only for people who can't get into university.

Reality: They're a choice, not a second prize. They're actually often the more efficient (in time and money) and targeted route via which to achieve your careers.

Myth: VET/TAFE graduates always earn much less than uni graduates.

Reality: Salaries for TAFE/VET graduates can be very competitive, especially in high-demand industries, and while there may be a gap, it's not always as big as you might think. 

Myth: TAFE/VET Courses Are Easier Than Uni Degrees.

Reality: TAFE/VET courses are different and not necessarily easier. They focus on practical skills and hands-on training, which can be just as challenging as academic study.

Myth: TAFE/VET courses are only for trade and manual jobs.

Reality: The truth is that TAFE/VET courses span a wide range of industries. They do include trade and construction jobs but extend to a wide range of non-trade areas.

Far from being a poor cousin of a university degree, VET and TAFE courses are simply a different way to go. They're an alternative that needs to be considered, as university might not be the right path. When you understand everything that's available, you're better able to make the right decisions.

Wandr - Making Sense of the Many Available Career Options

As you head towards the end of high school, there are many options that you need to consider, and as we've seen, TAFE and VET courses should also form part of your thinking. Choosing an overall career path can also be difficult, but that's what the Wandr discovery and learning platform is for.

In particular, our Career Kickstarter courses offer a way to gain marketable skills for a wide range of jobs in an array of industries. They can either serve as a viable alternative to TAFE training or as a complement to it. Our platform can also help you to decide which industry is right for you.

Not Sure About Which Type of Work Suits You Best?

There can be so much to think about when leaving high school that choosing your career direction can be more than a little confusing. However, the Wandr platform is here to help you make sense of things - allowing you to get a detailed look at an array of professions.

Our Trial Run courses, for instance, can give you great insight into any number of sectors, letting you sample a wide range of jobs without having to commit.

Among the various areas covered by Wandr training, you'll find:

  • Business, Management & Entrepreneurship
  • Mental Health & Wellness
  • FX & Graphic Design
  • Nutrition & Fitness
  • Cyber & Tech
  • Travel & Tourism
  • Photography
  • Fashion & Beauty

You don’t want to waste thousands of dollars and valuable time on a career that doesn’t fit you, your personality and your talents. With Wandr’s help, you won’t have to, as you get the info you need to find the roles that you’ll thrive in!

Find Your Professional With Wandr Online Learning

Leaving high school can be daunting, especially when you don’t know which way to go. However, The Wandr discovery and learning platform lets you see what it’s really like to work in a wide variety of sectors while gaining the marketable skills you need to succeed in the professional world.

Wandr lets you find what you’re meant to do with our interactive, video-led career content covering thousands of topics. Furthermore, the 1-to-1 career coaching we offer from real-world experts can give you helpful guidance that can make all the difference at this crucial time.
To find out more about us and the benefits of Wandr training, visit us today at www.wandr.au. Alternatively, why not speak with our friendly team by calling 1300 611 404 or emailing support@wandr.au? They're ready and waiting to help you get started.

by Tenzing Tsewang



Have you been considering the idea of taking TAFE or VET courses in Australia to further your career? If so, you may have heard some things about this path that aren't true. Join us as we debunk some of the common falsehoods in circulation to show you the value that's on offer.

Fitness and Business Mentor



Related articles

Like what you see? Checkout some more great content similar to this one.

AI, Cyber & Tech

High-Paying Careers In Australia That Don't Require a Degree

Did you know that you can still enjoy high-paying careers in Australia without going to uni? Here, we look at five great careers that offer ...

2 min read

Fitness & Nutrition

Bronte Campbell Joins Wandr: A Champion Dives into Mentorship

Exciting news for Wandr users! Dive into the incredible journey of Olympic champion Bronte Campbell as she joins Wandr as a celebrity mentor...

2 min read

AI, Cyber & Tech

How To Master Soft Skills in Australian Workplaces

While there's naturally a big focus on education and getting technical skills under your belt when you're leaving school, soft skills also n...

2 min read

Beauty & Makeup

Getting Creative With Beauty Entrepreneur Melanie Burnicle

How important is creativity in anyone’s working life? Well, it's more crucial than you might think, irrespective of which of the many career...

2 min read

Graphic & Interior Design

5 In-Demand Careers in Australia for '24 - For Inspiration

Finding direction after leaving school can be tricky with all the available career choices. Don't worry because this blog covers five top ca...

2 min read

Find your way.

Whatever you’re into, we’ve got content we think you’ll vibe with. Not sure where to begin? Explore our top areas of interest and see what grabs you.

Expand all areas of interest

Where to next?

Our study style quiz will help you work out your next step.

Let's Chat

Still mulling stuff over? Wanna speak to a real live person? Give us a call and we'll do our best to help you figure stuff out.