A UTAS staff member and an Honorary Associate have been awarded “Best Paper” presented at the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia conference held in Hobart recently.
The award-winning paper was based on the report prepared with Melissa Humphries called The Path Less Travelled: VET Articulation In Tasmania.
The paper shows that students admitted to higher education on the basis of previous vocational education and training perform as well, if not better, than all other student populations.
Former Acting Director of the UTAS Centre for University Pathways and Partnerships (CUPP) Associate Professor Anne Langworthy (now CUPP Associate and living in Melbourne) and Research Officer Social Inclusion Dr Susan Johns were thrilled to receive the prestigious award.
The paper challenges some commonly held myths about VET students’ academic ability and about the perceived differential status of VET and higher education, and suggests that higher education can learn valuable lessons from VET regarding practice-based learning.
For the first time in Tasmania, seven years’ worth of data relating to around 2000 UTAS students admitted on the basis of previous VET at Diploma or Advanced Diploma level, was analysed along with a random sample of other students.
The study, sponsored by the Tasmanian Articulation and Credit Transfer Committee, also considered completion data collected from the State’s two public VET providers, Tasmanian Polytechnic and Tasmanian Skills Institute and current student perceptions.
The Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia is a scholarly society for people committed to the advancement of higher and tertiary education. It promotes the development of higher education policy, practice and the study of teaching and learning.
Top 10 facts and figures from the paper: Why is it important for higher education to connect with the vet sector?
Image: UTAS’ Dr Susan Johns.
Authorised by the Executive Director, Student Centre
16 August, 2012