Student completion rates and job outcomes are becoming more of a focus for RTOs
RTOs are moving in bulk to support student completion rates and job outcomes through a range of measures designed to help their students progress through the education and training lifecycle.
Voice of VET on completion rates
The Voice of VET: RTO Industry Report 2020 has found the student completion rates of providers surveyed is currently ranging between 71% to 91%, depending on the type of RTO provider.
Government and TAFE providers are achieving the highest completion rates (91%) closely followed by private RTOs (81%), while enterprise (75%) and community RTOs (71%) have less success.
Providers are moving to tackle the completion gap. The majority of providers (61%) indicate they are taking action to identify at-risk students and intervene where it will help them complete training.
Flexibility is proving to be a key mitigator of student failure, with 39% of providers actively altering training and delivery times and 37% able to shift their training delivery modes (including to online).
Providers are also getting better at assessing this risk at the outset, with 37% of providers looking to better qualify their students at the enrolment phase on the suitability for the specific course.
Further measures include providing extra support, individual mentoring and more time with at-risk students (13%), as well as improved student communications, engagement and mentoring (9%).
Voice of VET on job outcomes
A full three quarters of RTO providers surveyed said they were actively engaged with their industry to ensure the qualifications they were delivering specifically matched the needs of employers.
In addition, 66% of all providers are either directly connecting graduates with potential employers or actively seeking employment opportunities on behalf of their students during their course.
Some RTOs offer further support for graduate careers, including career pathways, resumes, exam support and training (15%), or work placements, internships and work experience (6%).
Many could do better at tracking their graduate outcomes to know if courses result in employment. At present, only 30% of RTO providers do any form of employment outcome tracking
ReadyTech General Manager of Student Management Systems, Trevor Fairweather, said Voice of VET showed a growing alignment between education and training and employment outcomes.
“Student completion rates have proved to be an ongoing challenge for providers in vocational education and training, despite past efforts to close the completion gap from many providers.
“We are now witnessing an even stronger push to support students across the sector through their learning journey with a range of measures, including the willingness to be flexible in their delivery.
“Measures in place to connect completing graduates with real-world employment are also key for RTOs today, who are aligning their training ever more closely to the skills needs of employers.”