This is a snapshot of universities in Western Australia.
BEST IN AUSTRALIA
88.4% of Notre Dame undergraduate students were satisfied with the overall quality of their learning experience according to the Quality Indicators of Learning and Teaching (QILT).
91.1% Were positive about their skills development.
76.6% found full time employment
Notre Dame is a Catholic University but you don’t need to be Catholic or Christian or even religious to go there, and the fees are comparable with other universities.
The point of difference is that Notre Dame does have a spiritual, values driven, caring approach to teaching and learning which underpins their interactions and decision making. That’s why they are topping the QILT ratings.
It is quite a small university with 10,000 students and the vast majority of them are domestic students.
The university is in beautiful renovated old buildings around Fremantle.
Pastoral care and support developed for international students has been made available to help regional and remote students to settle in. The only shortcoming is the lack of Notre Dame student accommodation but the student support services people will help students to find accommodation to meet their needs.
Curtin is by far our biggest university with over 50,000 students. It seems like a city with business centres, shops, gyms, accommodation and bands and food trucks, art galleries and theatres.
I think undergraduate students could have a ball at Curtin, but the sheer size of of the place can be daunting. You need to actively work at getting engaged with the Curtin community, both social and academic, to make the most of your Curtin experience.
Curtin knows this and has invested in providing plenty of help for new students and for students with special needs, but it is up to you to seek it out.
Because of the size of the university there are many opportunities available for students to extend their experience, in Australia and internationally.
Curtin is part of a knowledge precinct in Bentley with CSIRO, Tech Park and the Pawsey supercomputer in the area. Staff and students actively seek to engage with industry to get knowledge and experience and do industry based research. It is number 2 in the world for Metals and Mining Engineering programs. This industry focus underpins the feel at Curtin.
Curtin seems exciting, dynamic and very cosmopolitan with lots of international students and with campuses in Malaysia, Singapore and Dubai as well as the one at Bentley and in Kalgoorlie.
ECU – Edith Cowan University
The Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching ranks ECU as the top public university in Australia for undergraduates’ student experience. You can feel the quality of the experience when you contact ECU for information. They get back to you. They try to help.
ECU started as a college for teacher training and gradually expanded its courses with WAAPA being one of the first ventures into new areas. Now WAAPA has a reputation as one of the BEST performing arts learning academies in the world.
ECU’s more recent expansion has been into engineering with significant investment into new facilities, international learning opportunities and strong demand for graduates.
ECU is pretty big but students are on the Mt Lawley and Joondalup campuses so it doesn’t feel overwhelming.
The buildings are great examples of design with some of the coolest architecture in Western Australia.
ECU is manageable and there is a strong student centric management focus which means students get help to succeed. There are many alternate pathways into ECU including the UniPrep program and experienced based entry.
People who didn’t think they could get into uni and succeed can are supported to thrive at ECU.
Murdoch has recognised that the world is changing and that there is a disconnect between education and where jobs are emerging. It has introduced “adaptive expertise” as a learning spine being introduced across the university.
They are focusing on adapting traditional courses with the application of technologies. So History + STEM could result in machine learning that unearths previously unknown information about cultures. Journalism + STEM, as seen in the use of drones, is revealing what is happening in emergency or war environments.
Murdoch has a strong focus on getting girls into engineering. They have engaged with schools and support in industry to lift the number of girls entering this field which delivers 25% of the world’s CEOs.
Murdoch has the biggest percentage of international students in WA.
They are teaching students to think globally, to seek ways to apply technology to their work and to work collaboratively.
UWA – University of Western Australia
This is our oldest university. Many industry, political and community leaders in Western Australia went to UWA which gives strong links between UWA and leaders across the State.
The UWA campus is beautiful with Winthrop Hall being the most recognised symbol of “a university” in WA. The gardens, theatres and art gallery and its role as the initiator of the Festival of Perth make UWA a hub of culture.
UWA has positioned itself as the university for high academic performers and many high achieving school leavers identify UWA as their first preference.
CQU – Central Queensland University
This is a new comer to Western Australia and it is working hard to attract students from their traditional university pathways with courses in sonography and echocardiography which are new to WA.
The main campus is located near the bottom of William Street near Elizabeth Quay and they have set up study hubs in Busselton, Broome, Geraldton and Karratha. These are often on TAFE campuses.
Many of the students are mature aged, external students who make use of online learning, occasional face to face contact and phone calls to fit their learning around their work and other demands.
Although there are 20,000 students at CQU, they are spread across Australia and numbers in WA are still quite small.
Still not sure what to do?
Go to the university open days
Contact the university career advisors. They are paid to help you.
Contact me. I will be able to point you in the right direction for help.
Director of In Focus Careers Careers Resources Hub for West Australians.
If you were hanging out for a flash of inspiration at a uni open day, careers expo or information session… WHAT DO YOU DO NOW??
Year 12s have never had it tougher when it comes to deciding what to do next.
While this is the first time year 12s will leave school, there are experts around who WANT to help you.
This simple summary of the support and main choices available to West Australian school leavers will help you to clarify your decision.
Uni or TAFE Spot the Difference
Many year 12 students don’t really understand the difference between uni and TAFE.
Guess which fashion course is at Curtin University and which is at South Metropolitan TAFE.
In this (course) you will focus on the relationship between garment and body, using a theoretical and contextual framework for understanding national and international trends and the cultural significance and practice of fashion design.
In our course you’ll learn how to produce a unique range of garments and accessories for the marketplace. You’ll gain fashion illustration and drawing skills and learn about digital design, pattern making and garment construction.
If you thought the first one was Curtin you are right. University has a more theoretical approach to learning while TAFE has a more practical focus. Pick the learning style that suits you best for next year.
Career Advice – Take action while all is quiet
The offices of university career advisors have gone quiet. The staff at Jobs and Skills Centres thought they would be run off their feet… but all is quiet there too.
If you are not clear about what to do in 2021 there has never been a better time to tap into the undivided attention of normally busy staff.
Jobs and Skills Centres aren’t just about TAFE. You can do aptitude tests to see what direction would suit you, you can get help with different uni and VET courses, they have a jobs board and you can get help with job application and interview skills. And the help is free.
Each Western Australian university free career counselling. You are under no obligation to enrol at the place where you get your counselling although your counsellor will know more about the university they are working for.
See your school career counsellor. There is no one better placed. They know you. They can talk to your teachers and your parents. They get the full picture and will be able to point you in a good direction.
You can always come to me for an online (and on phone) consultation. (Bev.J@infocus-careers.com.au) I have just started to do this with students online during the lockdown and it is great fun.
Youth Allowance and Scholarships
Your decision to study may depend on finances. If you are 18 – 24 and you have supported yourself for 18 months you MAY qualify for Youth Allowance.
Check the Youth Allowance site to see if there are any benefits that you are eligible for. There is an Ask for Help button which could save you hours trying to get through on the phone. If you need to leave home to study don’t forget to ask about travel allowance.
Also check for financial assistance on the Good Universities Guide site HERE.
There are scholarships for so many purposes, not just academic excellence and they are often only available when you start university or TAFE. Search online for scholarships in your field. The Good Universities Guide tries to capture most scholarships on its site.
Ask your career advisor for help searching for scholarships.
Very few people have a clear idea of what they want to do at university. If you want to go to uni but are not exactly sure what course or subjects to take, apply the same thinking you used in Year 10 when choosing WACE subjects to keep your opportunities open.
Talk to your school career counsellor about what course to apply for and subjects to take.
Go to see a career planner at one or two universities to clarify what course and subjects you wish to take.
Decide on your top choices.
Apply to your chosen university either via TISC or via Notre Dame or your chosen university.
Unsure about Uni for Next Year
If you MIGHT want to go to uni in APPLY through TISC. If you get offered a place you can accept and DEFER for a year.
Apply for a course at your chosen university via the normal TISC or direct application process
When you get an offer contact your university to hold your offer and defer it for a year.
Alternative Pathway to Uni
If you want to go to uni but don’t get the required ATAR score there are many alternative pathways you can take.
Some universities will consider your current scores if you have a year between leaving school and starting university. They consider that the break can result in you gaining maturity that will help you to succeed at university.
Contact me and I will send the latest WA information on alternative pathways at all WA universities including TAFE colleges.
See a career planner at the university or training college of your choice.
Decide on your best option.
Apply for the alternative pathway of your choice.
If you are clear about what TAFE course you want to take contact your chosen college to enrol in September.
Talk to your school career counsellor about what course to apply for and subjects to take.
Check out North Metro TAFE courses HERE and South Metro TAFE courses HERE
Go to see a career counsellor at TAFE to clarify what course and subjects you wish to take. Ask the counsellor to advise you about courses that are subsidised by government because of skills shortages. These courses are on the State Priority Occupation List (SPOL) and are cheaper than many other courses.
Decide which course to enrol in.
Apply for a place in your chosen course. Check the college website for online applications.
Apprenticeships and Traineeships
Getting an apprenticeship or traineeship is like getting a job.
Get help from your school career advisor to prepare your CV ready for job applications.
Get references from school before you leave and get copies of them. Get the correct title and contact details of those at school who give you a reference.
Ask your family and friends if they know of any apprentice opportunities.
Search for apprenticeship opportunities on sites like Indeed, Jora and Seek.
Ask your local TAFE if they have any pre apprenticeship programs. They can be tricky to get into as demand is always high. Employers often contact their local TAFE to find a good employee to take on as an apprentice.
The Victorian Government provides free unbiased advice about taking a Gap Year HERE.
Even if you get an unconditional offer for a place at a university based on your current results, there may be course prerequisites, or a better ATAR score may get you the perfect course you want, or a scholarship.
I recommend that you continue to prepare for all exams AS IF you will be doing them.
These tips will help.
Arrive early. Avoid anxious friends. Go to the loo.
Take drinking water with you.
Know how many questions or sections you have to answer and what they are worth BEFORE you arrive.
Allocate your time according to the marks for each section or question.
Know exactly what time you should finish each section and question.
Get seated early.
Breath steadily, get centred, sip water.
Listen to the supervisor’s instructions. Ask for clarification at any time.
Write your name and student number on the exam paper.
Read through all the exam paper carefully.
If there are choices, decide which questions to answer.
Make sure you are answering all questions required from each section.
Schedule what time you should answer each question
Plan to answer the easiest question first.
Leave the hardest question to last.
Know what time you should finish each question and stick to that time.
PLEASE make sure you understand what each question is asking.
Circle the key words in questions.
KNOW you are stressed.
Ask WHAT is the question ACTUALLY ASKING?
Start your first answer. Quickly plan your answer picking the BEST evidence you can provide that proves you are an expert on the subject.
Don’t spend more time than planned on a section or question.
Don’t over-answer or waffle on.
Add dot points if you are running out of time. You won’t lose points and may gain some.
If you have time skim read your answer for errors or omissions. This will also give you time to rest your writing hand and stop it cramping.
Systematically work through all required answers keeping to your time allocation.
Use every minute of exam time. If you have time left, review your answers before handing in the paper.
Hand in your rough work too.
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Curtin College offers courses that can result in entry to second year of Curtin’s Bachelor Degree program.
Portfolio Entry is not only for the creative courses; it is applicable to courses like Education, Science, Commerce and Health.
On Track is a 14 week course that prepares students for entry to a course with a minimum ATAR requirement of 70.
On Track Sprint is a 4 week course run over the Christmas holidays that may prepare you for entry to a course with a minimum ATAR requirement of 70.
TLC10 – prepares students to apply for Murdoch through a 1 day per week course that runs all year in Mandurah and Rockingham.
Portfolio Entry – you can gain entry to courses that rely on creative talent in media, games art and design and creative writing, photography and web communication via a portfolio demonstrating your work + a number of hoops like WACE and English competence. For Portfolio entry try the Domestic Admissions Team on 9360 7458 or send an email by following this link
UWAY – This is an alternative entry pathway and comprehensive support program for students completing Year 12 under challenging circumstances.
The program provides academic, financial and personal support, and it is responsive to individual student needs, throughout their final year of secondary school and during their university studies. You can apply for alternative entry to an undergraduate degree course through UWay if your academic achievements have been adversely affected by certain disadvantages.
Thanks Philip Sharpe, Future Students Centre, University of Western Australia
This program is tailored to help you meet entry requirements or boost your confidence.
It usually takes between 1 and 2 terms to complete (4 to 8 months). It can be completed online or on-campus.
CQU Principal’s Recommendation Scheme
The Principal’s Recommendation Scheme provides an alternate entry pathway to CQUniversity courses* that is based on the recommendation of High school Principals and not reliant on whether a student has received an ATAR.
At CQUniversity we believe senior schooling results are important, but we also believe that other factors such as motivation, talent, and passion can lead to student success at university. The scheme is designed to assist capable students to access entry to CQUniversity, it in no way provides relaxation of the quality and academic standards that students must meet to successfully complete their degree.
To apply for a CQUniversity course via the Principal’s Recommendation Scheme, a student must:
Be studying Year 12 in an Australian school in 2020.
Keep up to date with Western Australian career opportunities
The In Focus Careers newsletter brings together information from a network of West Australian career experts. You can tap into this expertise or just check out one issue of the insanely great In Focus Careers newsletter:
Universities in Western Australia have started to make early offers to students. In the middle of Year 12 students can apply to go to university based on their estimated ATAR from Year 11 through to the end of semester 1 in Year 12.
Teachers must estimate your ATAR score based on what you have done to the middle of Year 12 and their estimate is forwarded to universities BEFORE you undertake your final exams.
Year 11s no longer have time to settle in, fail their first exams, get a shock and up their game. These tips can help you to improve your game before your exams.
Study Tip 1 Prepare
Go through your diary and mark out:
Important dates in sport
Other important dates in your year
Go through your diary and mark out your week
Mark in study planning every Sunday night for 10 minutes
Music lessons and practice
Your part time job
Hobbies and mucking around with friends
Where Does Your Time Go?
Discover where your time goes. Virginia Tech, in the United States, has created this study skills quick quiz to help students to become aware of how they use their time.
Do the quiz.
How many hours do you have to left study?
If you need more time to study modify your time usage to suit your needs.
Mark your diary with the study time blocks.
Mark your sleep time in your diary.
Schedule half an hour phone-free-zone before bed.
Create a pre-bed “sleep set-up” routine for that half hour.
Study Tip 2 Pinpoint Your (SMART) Goals
(Specific, Measurable, Action Oriented, Realistic and Timebound Goals)
List each of your subjects
Set your specific, measurable goal for each subject e.g. English 75, Geography 64
Ask your teacher if this is realistic.
Ask you teachers to specify what you need to work on in their subject in order to achieve your goal.
Write down what they say.
This becomes your TO DO LIST
Study Tip 3 Prepare to be a Superstar
Plan Your Study
When you first sit down to study, make a list of the things you need to do.
Go through comments and suggestions made by your teachers. See if there is anything you can do to take their advice.
If you haven’t got anything to do, go to your “To Do List” that you created from the information your teachers gave you.
Start to work on items on your list.
Secret Sunday Superstar Strategy
You need to learn how to critically reflect on how you have done and what you can do to improve.
Each Sunday evening take 10 minutes to:
Plan what to work on in each study time block.
Plan your study time to complete assignments.
Focus on your weaknesses.
Reflect on how well you studied last week…
Does your study timetable need adjusting?
How accurate you were at guessing how long each assignment was going to take?
Can you do anything more to pay attention to your weaknesses?
Could you have asked your teachers for feedback or help on anything?
If you managed your phone.
What score out of 10 would you give yourself as a professional student?
You KNOW that you need to manage your phone. You can waste hours half studying and half messing around on it.
Complete calls and text messages BEFORE you go to your study area then remove your mobile phone from your study zone.
After an hour, take a break and check your phone messages, have a drink, talk to your family for 10 minutes.
Go back to your study zone and recommence the work you were doing.
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There are 120 Western Australia high schoolsthat save time and deliver informed careers education by linking into the In Focus Careers Network.
The School Curriculum and Standards Authority (SCASA) is THE mob that makes up the rules about WACE. The first place to find information about Year 11 and 12 is in the official Year 10 Information Handbook which SCASA puts out.
If you can’t find the information you need or if you are unclear on anything contact them at email@example.com.
STEP 2 Hear Your Dream
You need to have some idea about what career direction you would like to take.
Many schools have the Career Voyage program that will help you to nail down a career direction for the near future. If you don’t have access to Career Voyage at school you can do the quiz at a Jobs and Skills Centre.
I have done this Coggle brain storm of a bunch of places you can check out to narrow down what you like.
For years ATAR results were the short cut that universities used to choose their students. Things are changing. Competition between universities has heated up and they are looking at many alternative pathways that:
enable more students to go to university
ensure students don’t fail when they get there.
Universities are looking for alternative pathways more than schools and parents.
TAFE has always been flexible with its pathways to learning than universities and there is a huge range of possible pathways offered.
Job Prospects for Young Job Seekers
Last year the Career Development Association put on a webinar delivered by Ivan Neville, from the Commonwealth Department of Employment. He said….you really need to get a year 12 qualification, or equivalent, to get a job…..
But there isn’t much difference in employment outcomes between a degree (3.6%) and a Cert III (4.1%).
The opening of university entry to a wider audience had resulted in a shift towards degrees and away from vocational education since 2008.
There are now stronger job outcomes for apprentices and trainees than people with degrees.
Step 4 Check Course PRE-REQUISITES
There are lots of courses that have RECOMMENDED subjects, but not so many have definite PRE-REQUISITES that MUST be done as a WACE subject in order to get into a course.
There are lots of pathways into further study and your WACE pathway is just one of them.
The most direct pathway is however, to take subjects that the universities are looking for. So, once you have narrowed down a career direction to take, check out the TISC University Admissions Handbook. It identifies what WACE subjects you should take to keep your options open.
The Online Literacy and Numeracy Assessment (OLNA) is the minimum WACE requirement reading, writing and numeracy. It is usually done in 10 but there are more opportunities to sit the Assessment in Year 11 and 12 and even AFTER Year 12.
Prospective TAFE students who do not meet these standards can:
sit a TAFE Admissions literacy and/or numeracy test administered by Training Sector Services;
be referred to a TAFE college for a Learning Area Assessment; or
enrol in a course that does not have literacy or numeracy requirements, including foundation skills, equity courses and Certificate I
Step 5 Contact Your Career Advisor
Tap into the knowledge and experience of your career advisor.
If you don’t have access to a specialist career advisor at your school, go to a TAFE college Jobs and Skills Centre or private careers consultant to be sure your next step is the right one.
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(South Metropolitan Government High School.)
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