Student enrolments in government-funded vocational education and training (VET) have declined in the 12 months to December 2022, according to a new study..
The latest students and courses 2022 report from the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) shows that there were 1,196,535 students enrolled in government-funded VET in 2022, down by 4.3 percent or 53,550 when compared with 2021.
Enrollments fell the most by 9.6 percent in the Australian Capital Territory, 7.8 percent in Queensland and by 6.4 percent in Western Australia.
Victorian enrollments were down 2.8 percent and Tasmania by 2.4 percent, while in South Australia numbers were steady at 68,640.
According to the NVCER, full year training equivalents were down 2.6 percent to 472,780 – however despite this an estimated 7.0 percent of the Australian resident population aged 15 to 64 years participated in government-funded VET in 2022.
NCVER Managing Director Simon Walker said: “Despite the decline in 2022 student enrolments, there has been an overall increase of 7.4 percent since 2018.
“The number of students undertaking off the job training as an apprentice or trainee has also increased over the last two years, rising from 280,255 in 2020, to 368,180 in 2022.”
Vet training was substantially disrupted during the Covid-19 pandemic, though commencements in apprenticeships and traineeships significantly increased as a result of various stimulus incentives.
Such growth is largely reflected in the increase in enrollments in Certificate III level qualifications and within the engineering and related technologies field of education.
There were 1,137,785 students enrolled in nationally recognised training and 89,630 in non-nationally recognised training in 2022.
Of those enrolled in nationally recognised training, 82.4 percent or 937,240 people were undertaking training package qualifications.