Career education must be for all – not just those going to university

Career education must be for all, not just those going to university. It is important for all individuals to have access to information about different career paths and opportunities, regardless of their educational background or future plans.


In Australia, there is a tendency to prioritise university education and view it as the primary path to success. However, this narrow focus can leave many individuals feeling uncertain about their options and limited in their potential career paths.


Additionally, not everyone is interested in pursuing a university education, and it is important to provide support and guidance to those who may choose alternative paths such as vocational education or apprenticeships.


This view is not developed in isolation, a report by the Education and Employers Taskforce (2014) highlights the importance of careers education in providing students with information about different career paths and the skills required for success in the workplace. The report emphasises that career education should be relevant to all students, regardless of their future plans, and should focus on developing the key employability skills that are valued by employers.


There are two main post-secondary education options: vocational education and training (VET) and higher education (HE). VET refers to courses and training programs that provide practical skills and knowledge for specific occupations, while HE refers to courses and programs offered by universities that provide theoretical knowledge and skills in a range of academic disciplines.


According to the latest available data from the Australian government, the number of students enrolled in VET and Higher Education in 2020 is as follows:

  • 1.4 million students were enrolled in a Higher Education institution
  • 475,000 students were enrolled in a VET course through a TAFE institution


Careers education that is inclusive and accessible to all can help individuals to better understand their skills and interests, as well as the potential career paths that align with their goals.


This can include information on job requirements, salary expectations, and growth opportunities, as well as guidance on how to develop the necessary skills and qualifications for specific fields.


By providing comprehensive career education that is relevant to a wide range of individuals, we can help to ensure that everyone has access to the information and resources they need to succeed in their chosen career path. This can also help to promote greater equality and social mobility, as individuals from all backgrounds are able to pursue their goals and reach their full potential.