Choosing the best course to study can be a confusing process. Consider the many ways in which courses can differ in order to decide which course is best suited to you. This should be your primary consideration when it comes to choosing an education provider.
You can narrow down your options with thorough research. Just as you wouldn’t select a subject pathway without knowing the pros and cons, the same thing goes for selecting a course. At Kangan Institute, we offer a wide range of TAFE courses with a strong industry focus.
Here are some things to consider when choosing the best course to study.
1. Review the course outline
The same course can be taught differently from one institution to another. Review the course outline and pay close attention to the core modules, electives and whether or not there is a practical placement component.
Some course programs may give you more scope to complete subjects in your specialist area of interest and undertake hands-on experience. Practical professional development will equip you with current industry knowledge and encourage proactive thinking.
2. Check course accreditation
Check that the course is accredited by the relevant industry body. This will ensure that upon completion you will meet all of the registration requirements. This can be found within the career opportunities section of the course guide.
For example, the Diploma of Accounting (FNS50217) at Kangan Institute is nationally recognised as part of the Australian Qualifications Framework.
3. Consider course reputation
Meet people in the industry to determine which courses are most highly regarded at a particular institution. This will be different between education providers depending on the courses that you are interested in.
4. Study online or on-campus
Choosing the best course to study involves considering the best learning style for you and your current lifestyle. Do you need a flexible study schedule? Do you live too far from campus to commute? Would a face-to-face format be more beneficial for you?
If you do choose to study on campus, consider the costs associated with the commute or if you may be required to find accommodation if you need to relocate.
5. Strong industry connections
The graduate job market can be tough. It’s important that the course you prefer offers students the opportunity to undertake professional placements during their studies. Some courses, such as nursing, incorporate practical placements as part of their requirements.
Other courses may vary. Find out if there are opportunities for work integrated learning as part of the course structure. It could also be valuable to have access to a strong mentorship or alumni program. These benefits will give you a competitive advantage when you look for a graduate position.
6. Practical placement experience
There are a number of industry benefits to studying TAFE courses. In the modern workplace, practical training is what counts. A tertiary course will give you the foundational knowledge necessary to succeed in a trade or occupation.
TAFE courses offer students access to industry standard equipment that you will enable you to understand the workplace outside of the classroom. This is aligned with industry needs and the perfect pathway to help you find a career that can combine your interests with secure job prospects.
If you are considering an apprenticeship down the track, this aspect is important. A pre-apprenticeship can be undertaken on a full or part-time basis and is a fantastic stepping stone to kick-start your career in the trade industry.
A pre-apprenticeship will prepare you for the working environment, improve your fundamental skill set and pave the way for a long-term career. If you prefer a practical approach to education, this is a major advantage that could see you get industry placement further down the line.
7. ‘Feel’ of the institution
Set to study a course on campus? Attend open days and faculty information sessions to explore the institute, talk with staff and get a feel for what life is like on campus. Each education provider will have its own unique flavour. You need to choose a course at an institute where you can feel comfortable.
8. Financial pathways
If you are thinking about studying through an approved VET provider, it’s important to understand the recent changes made to VET Student Loans. The new VET Student Loans Scheme introduces a range of new measures designed to protect students.
There are three bands of loan caps; these are $5,000, $10,000 and $15,000. These caps are determined by the delivery cost of the course. Now that you’ve narrowed down your options, you can choose the best course to study for your financial situation.
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