Does VET course duration matter to quality and outcomes? Depends who you ask
The leaned Josie Misko and Patrick Korbel found out in research for the estimable National Centre for Vocational Education and Research.
They used certificate III and IV courses in childcare, disability support and security (as in bouncers) to explore what teachers and students think.
They found that students do not think course length determines “training experience.” However, providers, regulators and industry bodies “have little appetite for super-short courses” and there is “a widespread tension” between allocating enough time for student-learning and practice and, “the application of the fundamental philosophy of competency-based training, which is, in theory, not time-based.”
Overall, they find their statistical analysis;
“can provide some markers for action and decision-making, it cannot, on its own, tell us very much about the quality of the training delivered or experienced. Although we can speculate that students have withdrawn because they have been able to get a job without the qualification they originally thought necessary, or that work and other life commitments have become a priority, we require more information about the actual student experience in the training program to make any definitive comment on the link between duration and withdrawals and ultimately, course quality.”