Start learning about life at university in Year 9. Check out the food vans. Listen to the music. Go into buildings and see the latest tech tools, computer games and research. Find the library, the shops and the toilets.
Explore and Experience Try stuff. There will be people inviting you to engage with practical experiences in their subject. It could be VR. It could be checking out the latest medical research, making a short movie using their studio. All faculties will have practical experiences for you to engage with. Do it now.
Get an authentic experience. Engage with current students. Build on what you have learned in years 9 and 10 visits by asking questions of both students, academics and staff. Check out presentations and exhibitions to see what you will gain most from and register for them, or just make a schedule of where to be and at what time.
Year 12 Tips
This is it. You need to be able to build from your other Open Day experiences. You will know what faculties to visit, and you will have a range of questions to ask. By now you should have narrowed down your options and you will be able to ask specific questions about subjects, industry engagement opportunities, mentors, support programs etc. You will know which presentations and demonstrations you need to revisit.
Go for a smooth transition
Here is a guide for you to prepare for life after school. Start early and gradually build your ability to glide gradually from school into your chosen new life, rather than leap into the unknown.
With so much competition for school leavers, teachers have plenty of opportunities to engage with universities.
All West Australian universities provide one on one career interviews. Everyone should talk to a career advisor at their chosen university before they enrol.
All universities also do campus tours and special information evenings. You can find an updated calendar of events in the In Focus Careers Newsletter.
Schools can invite career counsellors to give presentations at schools or attend school expos.
Murdoch workshops for high schools
Murdoch Outreach have been working hard to develop an online offer to help support teachers and school communities. Explore our wide range of online workshops and our inspiring podcast series.
Explore our online workshops
Your high school students can participate in our Outreach workshops, but online! Get them to explore the curriculum, build new skills and develop a deeper understanding of subjects through our series of free online STEM, HASS and Creative Arts and Communication workshops, which can be booked by teachers for a whole class.
In our STEM workshops, students will develop their critical thinking and teamwork skills through using their imagination to solve challenges, crack codes, write algorithms, explore probability and design and build machines.
What is criminology? Can we lower our carbon footprint? How do businesses work and what do marketers do? Get your students to explore all these questions and more while working with their classmates in our HASS workshops.
In our Creative Arts and Communication workshops your students will explore digital painting, pixel art, portfolio design, personal branding, design thinking and ideation, the principles of graphic design and much more.
Curtin AHEAD is a dynamic outreach program, fostering the potential of individuals and groups underrepresented in higher education. We work with high schools to raise aspirations and build learning skills, delivering workshops, on-campus experiences, mentoring programs and career-developing activities.
EcoChallenge Australia provides an exciting and authentic learning experience for students in Years 5-12 through the online strategic game, Aqua Republica, to explore issues and solutions relating to water management and sustainable development. EcoChallenge Australia incorporates a sustained engagement with the principles of water usage across industrial, urban and agricultural systems and the impact upon ecosystems.
Innovative Schools Consortium
Through a partnership with Curtin, secondary schools can help their high achievers fulfil their true potential. Identified students participate in programs that build their skills and strengths in innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship. They receive a record of their achievements that can be used towards meeting university admission criteria, gaining accelerated entry into Curtin or supporting their scholarship applications. Download the Innovative Schools Consortium flyer – [.pdf 270kB]
Learning Futures Network
Comprising more than 140 schools, industry and community organisations, the Learning Futures Network is focused on driving transformation across student learning and the future of work, while building deep learning relationships across communities.
The network provides an avenue for schools to collaborate with Curtin, and learn more about higher education, alternative entry pathways, and professional learning and postgraduate opportunities for teachers. Join the Learning Futures Network.
Professional Learning Hub
Curtin’s commitment to teaching and teachers continues after graduation. Our Professional Learning Hub enables our alumni to remain inspired, informed and current in their classrooms. Our innovative, practical and research-based workshops contribute to teacher PD hours, building better educational outcomes for the community through greater job satisfaction.
Curtin’s School of Education also offers networking sessions and presentations for teaching professionals.
STEM Outreach offers engaging and innovative programs that connect your school and community to STEM and Curtin research. We deliver programs, workshops, camps, excursions, incursions and competitions for students and teachers across metropolitan and regional Western Australia. See all the ways your school can get involved with STEM Outreach.
UniReady in Schools
The UniReady Enabling Program is one of Curtin’s alternative entry pathway programs. It has been approved as an endorsed program for high schools in Western Australia and can be run as part of the high school curriculum. It not only makes up a high school student’s WACE but, if completed successfully, also means the student is eligible to apply for a range of Curtin undergraduate courses.
Presently the course is offered as part of a pilot with a limited number of places. If your school is interested in the program, you will need to make an application to UniReady and pay a program licence.
Through the AIME Mentoring program, Curtin students are empowering Indigenous high school students, giving them the skills and confidence to grow and succeed. Read more about AIME
High school resources
This dedicated page provides resources to all the key questions we receive from high school students around admission pathways, study areas, scholarships, how to apply and understanding prerequisites. This will be a key resource for you to distribute to students with everything they need in one place. Visit the high school resources page
UWA Career advisers and teachers
Here you can access resources, request school visits or on-campus experiences, and keep up to date with the latest information to help your students find their path to UWA. You can find the information HERE.
School Engagement team
The School Engagement team supports students in Years 10–12 to make informed decisions about their future study options. Our team can advise on UWA courses, opportunities, scholarships, accommodation options, admissions pathways and more.
Please contact us directly for further information and to book:
presentations at your school
attendance at careers expos, fairs and information events
You can also sign up to receive our regular e-newsletter, which covers opportunities, events and activities for your school, as well as the latest information on UWA courses and admissions. Contact the School Engagement team on email@example.com.
Notre Dame For Career Advisors
Careers Advisor hold the key to guiding students to their future opportunities.
To best direct students’ potential towards education and career choices that will enrich their lives, you need to know the facts.
We’ve gathered everything you need to know here to support you in your vital role.
Exploring opportunities outside school should not be a huge burden for teachers. These resources are designed to support teachers and students. If you are looking for something different for your school, contact your local university and request the help you need.
There are more law graduates in Australia each year than the total number of lawyers in Australia.
It may take you years after you graduate to find a job where you practise law.
Not only are there too many law graduates for the job vacancies that are available, you can get advice on how to write your will online. You can file for divorce online. Artificial intelligence delivers instant information that law degrees take years to deliver.
People don’t go to lawyers if they can save themselves money by doing law themselves.
The demand is down. The price is up. There is a glut of law graduates looking for work.
You might think again about doing a law degree.
Law degrees deliver great thinking and analytical skills
If someone with a law degree applied for a job I advertised, chances are they would get an interview. The job probably wouldn’t demand law work but I would presume the applicant could problem solve, think of good wording for contracts and warn me of any dodgy stuff that was in paper work. Someone with a law degree would probably be a good employee.
On the other hand, someone with a business or commerce degree may be better for my business, AND their degree would have cost them half as much.
Make Smart Decisions
If you bought a car for $70,000 you would check out a few car sales places before you made your decision to buy.
All universities in Western Australia deliver law degrees. Pick two or three universities and make an appointment with career advisors. Check out what law degrees you can specialise in. Compare the different courses and support that the different unis deliver…. there is a big difference between the support provided by unis in WA.
Ask current students questions about the courses on Whirlpool.
Year 10 is when you dive deep to get exposed to university life.
Check out the food stalls. Try new gadgets. Explore the campus. Go to some talks. See what you like.
Step 1: Before you go
Before you go to the Open Day spend 30 minutes checking out the uni website to see all of the different courses. Pick 2 different subject areas like science and education, to focus on.
Each area will have a number of courses to choose from, like in education you can study primary school and high school and within each of those there are lots of options. Choose which ones you want to fine out about.
Step 2: Get a Plan
There will be an open day program. Check it out to see what course information sessions you can go to.
Locate the buildings on the university website and plan to go to two talks or displays.
Step 3: Explore
Go to the Open Day. Take a tour of the libraries, student clubs, labs and workshops and even the accommodation. Do you like it there?
Talk to some current students about what they like and what they plan to do when they finish.
Check the displays, talks and course information presentations.
Find lecturers to talk to and ask them what the best thing about their course is.
IF NECESSARY CHANGE SUBJECT SELECTIONS WHEN BACK AT SCHOOL
The sites where the university is located.
The academic staff who work in a division or school at a university, or even the school itself, like the Education Faculty.
A degree is the standard university qualification and is recognised worldwide. Most degrees take three to four years to complete.
The first degree you study at university is called an undergraduate degree, e.g. Bachelor of Arts.
A person who has not yet completed their first degree.
Level 1 = your first yearLevel 2 = your second yearLevel 3 = your third year
Courses are the blocks of subjects or units that make up the qualification. A 3 year Bachelor degree course has 24 units:12 Level 1 units @ 6 subjects/semester8 Level 2 units @ 4 subjects/semester4 Level 3 units @ 2 per semester You can mix this up but you can’t do more than 12 first year units and you need to do at least 4 third year units.
A major is you chosen area to study. You will do a sequence of units in that field right through your degree If you choose to major in systems engineering your units will focus on designing, planning and modelling networks, on maths, engineering law and other units that will lead to you knowing how to design robust, reliable systems.
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.
Over the last couple of weeks the news has been reporting on all of the jobs being lost at universities in WA due to COVID 19 impacts. The unis are all working like crazy trying to attract local students and they are making it easier and easier to get in next year.
You can get into uni in Western Australia by doing a university preparation course. Most universities have at least one of these on offer.
After doing the course you may be offered a place at uni, which you don’t have to accept.
They are generally free.
You may be able to complete one before the start of the 2021 academic year.
You find out about a range of different courses that may interest you.
They are generally a semester long so you can start your degree in Semester 2.
You learn about university life without having the pressure of a full degree program.
Although each course is different there are usually 4 subject like….
Research Skills and Information Literacy
Normal ATAR entry through TISC applications will be the standard entry pathway for 2021. Find details HERE.
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.
Fairway UWA is an admission 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.
The Broadway scheme allows eligible students from a Broadway-identified Western Australian school to receive an automated ATAR adjustment if the school at which they completed their final WACE examinations:
UWA will provide an offer based on a student’s predicted ATAR from the end of Year 11. We may require a diagnostic interview to identify any additional support that may be required, including bridging units, once they arrive at UWA. At this stage Year 12 students must still sit their Year 12 exams and, when results are released, if their ATAR is higher than their predicted ATAR, they can update their application if they’d like to change their course. Find details HERE.
First in Family
If you have received an ATAR of 75-79.95 and will be the first in your family to attend university, you may still be eligible for a place at UWA. If you have a sibling at uni you are still eligible for First in Family consideration.
In recognition of the unique set of challenges Year 12 students are facing this year, 18 and 19-year-old students who are taking insufficient ATAR-based subjects or are not taking ATAR, will be eligible to sit the STAT test and a diagnostic interview as above.
The Predicted ATAR entry pathway is not applicable for Direct Pathways to Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy and Podiatry. The STAT test pathway is not available for any Direct Pathways or the Bachelor of Philosophy. The application process for these courses will be communicated shortly.
Applicants who have a VET Diploma can apply for entry to an undergraduate course. Find details HERE.
Indigenous Study Pathways
Did you know Indigenous students can gain entry to UWA without an ATAR? There are various pathways for gaining entry to UWA, and once you’re here, there is great support to help you settle in. Learn more about the Aboriginal Orientation Course and the Provisional Entry Scheme. Find details HERE.
UWA Foundation Program for International Students
The UWA Foundation Program is the most effective path to a place at UWA for international students. Successful completion of the program guarantees entry to an undergraduate degree, subject to any quotas or prerequisites.
The Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) provides an admission pathway to university if you don’t hold other qualifications that are acceptable for entry. It’s a test designed to assess aptitude for learning at tertiary level.
Portfolio Entry is not only for the creative courses; it is applicable to courses like Education, Science, Commerce and Health.
Indigenous Enabling Course
If you’re of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent and you haven’t met the requirements for an undergraduate (degree) course, we offer a range of enabling courses. These short programs can help you meet the requirements for your chosen course, as well as equip you with the skills, knowledge and confidence to succeed at university.
Not everyone has the same opportunities to achieve their true academic potential. You may have the ability to succeed at university but not had the educational, financial or social opportunities to focus on your studies and achieve a high enough Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) for entry.
If you are finishing Year 12 in 2020 and aiming to start university in 2021, then HorizonsPlus could be for you. This program provides an entry pathway into Murdoch.
On Track Sprint
On Track Sprint is a 4 week course run over the Christmas holidays. It is going to be a TISC option for 2021 selections. The course prepares you for entry to a course with a minimum ATAR requirement of 70.
On Track is a 14 week course that prepares students for entry to a course with a minimum ATAR requirement of 70. It is FREE.
FlexiTrack– can be done over 1 semester, accelerated 10 weeks, or 2 semesters at part time and this is entirely online.
Law Startis an admission pathway for academically capable students who wish to study Law at Murdoch University. To be eligible to apply you must have completed one or more ATAR subjects with a strong focus on communication and essay writing skills. Acceptable subjects will include but not limited to English, English Literature, Modern History, Politics and Legal Studies.
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. You also need a letter of endorsement from a teacher and a 500 word application – which a school based career advisor can help you to write.
For Portfolio entry try the Domestic Admissions Team on 9360 7458 or send an email by following this link
KTrack – is offered through our Kulbardi Aboriginal Centre and is open to students who identify with the ATSI community.
West Australian career teachers are the BEST INFORMED careers teachers in the world.
I haven’t fact checked this but…..
…where else would you find nearly 1000 educators, employment service providers, unis, RTOs, and a bunch of industry people who are so parochial, and so concerned for career education that they freely share information for the common good?
The contributions of West Australians, and a few other minor players like the Commonwealth government, has resulted in the August issue having 50+ pages of stories on:
Their kids are in year 12. They haven’t decided what to do next year.
Parents don’t want their kids to leave school and fall into a hole. The kids don’t want to talk about it.
Parents can suggest these steps as a path forward
STEP 1: Explore
Check out some aptitude tests to see what tends to come up. Find a range of different tests HERE.
Get a piece of paper or a notebook.
Pick 4 different tests to do.
After each one write down three most important things the test indicated. For example….
I want to work outdoors
I am creative
I am a natural leader
When you have done a few tests you should start to see some common themes. These will help you as you explore your career options.
Some of the tests, like Job Outlook suggest career matches to match your aptitudes.
Step 2: The Shoulders of Giants
I once counselled a student whose mum and dad, brother and uncle were mechanics yet she hadn’t thought of being a mechanic. She ended up doing a Defence Force Gap Year where she started a mechanic apprenticeship.
It is easiest to build from what you know, yet we are often not aware of what we know.
If you are an Eskimo you might think building igloos is for you. If everyone in your family plays an instrument, being a musician could be for you.
What careers you know from your life experience? Check out your family, your family friends, school friends’ parents, sport coaches.
What work do they do?
It is easier when you build from what you know.
Step 3: What is Important?
Whether it’s diamonds, world peace or having fun, your values will remain fairly stable and they will ground you throughout your life.
This game helps you to clarify your values.
1. In a list, write the names of 8 people you like.
They can be family or friends, famous people or fictional people like superman.
Don’t go on until you have your list.
2. Now next to each name write three or four things you like about that person.
3.Group similar values with different colour highlighters. You might group together smart,wise, clever, leader. (CLEVER)
Try to group all of the values into three or four groups. Give each group one name.
Now you have key values that are important to you.
These values guide who you are, how you act and what you do.
They anchor your decisions.
When you are in doubt, make decisions that are consistent with your values.
Well, that’s not a bad start. From the work you have done you now know:
1. What natural abilities you have.
2. What natural careers environment you live in.
3. What values drive your decisions.
Awareness of your natural abilities, your natural careers environment and your values can drive your decisions.
If you are associated with a high school in Western Australia it probably subscribes to my In Focus Careers Newsletter. Career information you receive about new courses, career events and scholarships are delivered to the school each month through the newsletter.
Contact me for a complimentary copy of the newsletter:
Apprenticeships are the main things we know that TAFE delivers.
If you want to be a mechanic or electrician, you get an apprenticeship and go to TAFE.
But what about computer technicians, house designers, tourism operators, agriculture and aged care workers?
There are hundreds of jobs you can get with a TAFE qualification.
Do I need a qualification AT ALL after leaving school??
Yes….. The bottom line is that you NEED a post school qualification if you are not to take a pathway to poverty.
Employers pay for knowledge and skills, but:
people who have a Certificate III or IV have about the same unemployment rate as people who have a degree.
people who have a TAFE qualification earn about the same as people who get degrees.
(Statistics from Ivan Neville, Labour Market Research and Analysis, Dept of Labour)
Spot the Difference
Guess which Fashion Course is run at Curtin and which one is run at TAFE?
You’ll focus on the relationship between garment and body, using a theoretical and contextual framework for understanding the cultural significance and practice of fashion design and global trends.
You’ll learn the principles of design and creative studio practice; and develop skills in fabric manipulation and construction, design, pattern-making, styling and fashion illustration.
Study the enterprise skills to work in fashion business. Computer Aided Design (CAD) patternmaking, grading and illustration facilities, world class fashion design and textile forecasting resources, over 80 specialised industrial sewing machines, and a staff of fashion industry specialists, are key to our successes with our industry relevant courses, graduate employment outcomes and recognition in the sector.
It is easy to see that the one that mentions theory is a uni course while the one that focuses on CAD and pattern making has a more practical focus.
Length of Course
An qualified electrician (Certificate III) takes about 4 years to get their license.
A barista takes about a week to get a piece of paper saying they have a set of skills (skills set) rather than a full qualification as a chef. A course on using farm chemicals safely may take a day and you don’t need to be a qualified farmer to do the course.
The focus of the courses is always on providing the skills that industry needs for a particular purpose.
Lots of TAFE courses give you credits at university. A Diploma of Work Health and Safety takes a year to complete and you will get between 6 months and a year’s credit for the Diploma if you do a degree.
A Bachelor of Science (Health, Safety and Environment) takes three years.
Cost per Course
The maximum fee for the one year Diploma of Work Health and Safety is $2,848.50 which included tuition and resources that you may have to purchase.
If you do a course where there is a West Australian skills shortage, like cyber security, aged care or agriculture , your fees will be heavily subsidised by the State government.
The tuition fee for the three year Bachelor of Science degree is $8,460 (Roughly $1000/unit)
There are many scholarships available for university students.
TAFE is More Like School
When you go to TAFE you will probably go into a class of less than 25 students, a lot like a schoolroom or workshop designed to replicate what you will find in the workplace. Some TAFE courses are done entirely in the workplace. Some courses also have a significant theory component – Occupational health and safety, for example, has a lot of chemistry in the course. Veterinary nursing includes anatomy and physiology.
Uni has more Theory
Lectures are a routine teaching methodology at university. You may be in a group of 400 students in a lecture theatre as you are given information by an expert in their field. You are required to do reading on the subject BEFORE you go into the lecture. The subject of your lecture will be followed up by a tutorial or practical workshop on the subject where you can ask questions and gain more in depth knowledge.