Choosing the right course and the right training provider for you

Most VCE students of class 2016 would have already completed their VCE exams, but today is officially the FINAL DAY of exams for ALL VCE students! Hooray! I remembered how stressful the final exams were and I’m sure many of you are relieved that they’re OVER! I’m also sure many would have thought you would never have survived your final year, but guess what? You have! And you deserve a big pat on the back! And of course, a really well-deserved break! Ahhh … The memories come flooding back reminiscing my schoolies adventures, or should I say misadventures? But that’s another story for another day.

Soon you will all be receiving your VCE results, followed by your offers for the courses you have applied for. I truly hope that most of you do get the offers you have worked so hard for. But if you don’t, it is time to re-strategise, decide what you really want to do, and how you are going to achieve it. It isn’t the end of the world, although your parents (and maybe even you) might think it is. Life won’t always be as you plan it, but your reaction to challenges that come your way will certainly shape the person you will become. It is up to you to decide whether you want to drown yourself in your own sorrows, or whether you want to see it as a learning curve and act accordingly.

Self-evaluation

If you are now having doubts about whether the courses you initially applied for is what you really want to do, re-evaluate them. What are you passionate about? What makes you happy doing every single day? You’ll be doing this for the rest of your life, so if you can’t decide, perhaps a gap year experiencing the world, exploring your skills and passions, and going on once in a lifetime adventures might help you decide what it is you want to do for the rest of your life. Some of you may decide to do a volunteering stint in a developing country, some of you may decide to backpack across the globe! Whatever you choose to do, make sure you have a plan in place. So that it doesn’t all become all party and play.

Which course is right for you?

A checklist always helps.

List down what you are looking for in life and what you need to have to achieve it.

Next, look up which courses will help you develop and attain the skills and knowledge needed. If you have already been rejected by the course you need to get into, look for pathway alternatives into that course. For example, if you want to become a nurse and you weren’t successful in securing a place in a Bachelor of Nursing, look into a Diploma of Nursing course instead. Completing a Diploma of Nursing could gain you a pathway into a Bachelor of Nursing. Be sure to confirm with the TAFE or private college that you will be undertaking your diploma course at that they are offering accredited training, and check with the university where you would like to undertake your Bachelor of Nursing degree that by completing the diploma course, you will get a pathway into the Bachelor of Nursing with that university. With some undergraduate degree courses, you may even get to credit some of the work you have done for your diploma course and shave some time off your degree! Which means you might be able to complete your Bachelor of Nursing in 2 years instead of the usual 3 years! Same goes for other undergraduate degrees such as a Bachelor of Information Technology, or a Bachelor of Business. The same principle works. So it isn’t the end of the world if you don’t get into the course of your choice. There are always other ways to get there OK?

Which education institution is right for you?

Once you have sorted your course choice, the next step is to determine the right training provider. Look for one that suits your needs and one that you feel you can trust. Some students look for something locally as they do not have the resources to travel far away. Some students may look for a training provider with computer access. Some students may look for a training provider that is flexible (offering blended and online classes) as they might want to work whilst studying. Some students may look for a training provider that invests in ethical businesses and not in big pharmaceuticals or mining companies. Whatever your needs and requirements are, make sure you are comfortable with your choice. The Victorian Department of Education and Training came up with a useful checklist to help get you started. You can access it here.

The Australian government has developed a website called MySkills which enables you to search for courses and the training providers that offer them. All you have to do is enter the course of your choice or the line of work you want to be in, and your location, and it will list down the training providers that offer those courses. It’s that simple! It will also give you the average price of the course, the average duration of the course, details about the course, which occupations the graduates of the course are employed in, their employment success rates, and even the demand for those skills in the future! Pretty cool huh? This is ONE thing our government has gotten right. Finally!

Making a decision

Most importantly, do your research and compare. You don’t want to end up with a training provider who is the wrong fit for you. The 1-2 years you’ll be spending studying, you want to make sure you’re in good hands. You want to make sure you will get the support you need. If you need any help, you can always speak to any of our trainers or course advisors and we won’t be biased. As much as we would really like you to be part of our Dolph family because let’s face it, we take quality education and training seriously; if we are not a right fit, you are better off with another training provider. We don’t want our students to be unhappy or not receive the support they require because they might need extra support in learning due to a learning difficulty.

If you are looking to study in Melbourne I think that’s enough rambling for one day. I hope that this post has given you a good starting point to enable you to choose the right course and the right training provider for you. Good luck and as our motto goes – greatness awaits you!

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