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Got some Q's about VCAL? We have the answers!

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning is an alternative study method for students to complete their senior certificate. It has been around for quite some time now, but there is still some confusion about what it really is! Below are some of the more commonly asked questions about VCAL.

Why would I choose VCAL?

If you are in year 11 or 12 and are finding the curriculum is not working for you for whatever reason, but you want to finish your senior secondary certificate, then VCAL could be the option you are looking for.

VCAL is an alternative to VCE, but is still an accredited senior secondary school qualification. If you choose to study VCAL you will be gaining practical experience and ‘employability’ skills as part of your curriculum.

Where can I study VCAL?

You can begin your VCAL journey at secondary school in year 11 or 12, however it is also available at most TAFE institutes too!

Do I need anything to start?

Nope. Just speak to your school careers advisor or a teacher about how to get you started in a VCAL program.

What does a VCAL program look like?

There are three levels to VCAL, Foundation, Intermediate and Senior. You will discuss with your teacher or school careers advisor about the level which is most suitable to your needs and abilities.

You then get the choice of selecting units from each of these four compulsory VCAL strands:

  • Literacy and numeracy skills
  • Work related skills
  • Industry specific skills
  • Personal development skills

How long does VCAL go for?

All three levels of the VCAL program run for 12 months to completion.

What sort of work experience will I gain?

There are mandatory industry days that students get to participate in and the types of these depend on the level they are studying. For Foundation students your industry days will be in the Hospitality industry, where you will get to work in a commercial kitchen learning to create tasty treats.

For intermediate and senior students, you choose from either hospitality, warehousing or creative industries depending up on what you are most interested in. You will get to participate in industry days where you can learn valuable employability skills in these areas that can assist you with your future career planning.


The VCAL Intermediate - Warehousing program

One day per week, our VCAL Intermediate students who have chosen to study Warehousing, head over at Wodonga TAFE’s warehouse site at Moorefield Park Drive. Here students cover a mixture of theory and practical work that is based around real work experience in a warehousing environment. Once the class have learned the theory they then get to head out to the warehouse and practice what they have just learnt. There are opportunities to drive a forklift and use industry relevant equipment under the careful observation of their facilitator. They are encouraged to think laterally and understand the bigger picture of what is occurring in the warehouse, like:

  • Ensuring safety procedures in place to protect people from accidents
  • Why businesses need to manage risks using the correct methods
  • Understanding who is legally responsible for any safety breaches
  • Why and how to use purchase orders, invoices and packing slips in the warehousing industry
  • How to interpret and complete warehousing paperwork

Wodonga TAFE’s Warehousing Teacher, Peter Bluck, explains, “VCAL focuses on developing work related skills not only for the industry they are training in, but which will set them up for all future employment.”

Throughout the course students are encouraged to become more confident in their ability to think in relation to a workplace environment, to problem solve and to build skills that will help them with their future careers.

If you would like to know more about our VCAL opportunities here at Wodonga TAFE, please visit our website or contact our customer service team who can put you in touch with our VCAL experts on 1300 698 233.





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