Industry 4.0 implications for the VET system

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) has launched two new ‘good practice guides’ as part of their response to issues raised by Industry 4.0 technologies.

The guides lay out frameworks for how best to incorporate essential digital skills into vocational education and training (VET) delivery and to upskill VET educators.

The guides Incorporating digital skills into VET delivery and Teaching digital skills: implications for VET educators highlight how critical it is for VET educators to use technology in their teaching practice, as is their ability to assist learners in developing their own digital skills.

NCVER managing director Simon Walker said: “Short courses and micro-credentials that focus on digital skills development could prepare the current workforce to adapt to and manage changing roles at work.

“In the longer term, the sector should look to embed digital skills into VET delivery by recognising them as a key component of foundation skills along with language, literacy and numeracy.”

The good practice guides were developed via forums held in late 2019 with representatives from industry, training providers and practitioner bodies, as well as reference committees, policy-makers and researchers. National and international research on the subject was also reviewed.

Walker said: “If we are going to keep up with the rapid evolution of technology, the VET sector will need to partner with employers to ensure training options deliver skills that are relevant and up to date.

“The key to successful uptake of professional development by VET educators is a whole-of-organisation approach to digital skills capability development within registered training organisations.”

Walker said there was a need to revise funding models, streamlining of training package updates, greater flexibility in course design, and encouraging the notion of lifelong learning in all Australian workers and workplaces.

Picture: NCVER

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