What is VET?

Traditionally known as TAFE, Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses are practical and hands-on, equipping you with the skills and experience you’ll need to make your dream career a reality.

Is VET for me? 

VET is perfect for those who know what they want and can’t wait to get started. With many courses featuring workplace-based learning, it’s the ideal way to get job-ready. 

You might consider a VET course if:  

  • you’ve just finished high school  
  • you’re returning to work 
  • you’re looking to upskill 
  • you’re interested in a career change.

Try VET taster events

Want to see first-hand if VET is for you? Come to one of our on-campus Try VET taster events throughout the year and get all your questions answered.

  • Advanced Diploma of Building Design student Irene smiling proudly in front of her floor plan projected on the wall

    Try VET

    Tuesday 19 March 2024, 5.30pm–7pm
    Wantirna campus

    Our Try VET event is like a mini open day – designed to give you all the information you need to choose a new career.  

    Drop into our Try VET event to hear about our certificate and diploma courses, speak directly to our teaching staff and applications team, and enjoy a free BBQ on us.

Can't attend in March?

You can also attend our Try VET event on 23 April at Croydon campus or 21 May at Wantirna campus. Details will be available soon on our website.

Find a VET course to suit you 

We offer VET courses across a range of study areas including design, media, business, health, science, education, community services, engineering, and trades.

Want to explore more courses?

Check out the full range of certificate and diploma courses available at Swinburne. Many of them provide a direct pathway if you choose to progress to higher education, such as a bachelor degree.

Why choose VET at Swinburne

Cutting-edge skills and technology

Three convenient campuses

Connected to industry

Pathway to university degree

Frequently asked questions

VET courses include pre-apprenticeships, apprenticeships, traineeships, trades, certificates, diplomas and advanced diplomas. These courses provide practical, skills-focused training that leaves you industry connected and ready for the workforce. 

While many undergraduate degrees will take three years to complete, VET courses can be completed in as little as a few hours for short courses, 10 weeks for some certificate-level courses, or up to two years full-time for diploma-level courses. 

Apprenticeships and traineeships combine paid work and formal study at Swinburne. 

  • Pre-apprenticeships (three to six months): Get your foot in the door, try something new and gain some basic industry skills before you start an apprenticeship. 
  • Apprenticeships (three to four years): Combine paid employment with formal training in fields such as electrotechnology. 
  • Traineeships (one to two years): Enhance your skills with formal training while you’re working in paid non-trade employment. You can train on campus or at work. 

Certificate programs focus on technical and workplace skills, while diploma and advanced diplomas expand on a discipline area with increased focus on professional knowledge. Learn more about these course types.

Many courses are offered with both full-time and part-time options. Other courses, such as apprenticeships and traineeships are only offered as part-time training as students will be working while they train.

Many courses are delivered in a blended format, combining the best of online learning as well as the benefits of being on campus.

When on campus you'll have opportunities to speak with your teachers face-to-face and make use of the many student support services available.

Some courses are delivered 100% online, where teachers facilitate virtual classrooms and learning and assessment is done through an online portal.

The Victorian State Government supports students by offering Free TAFE (Vocational Education and Training) courses in targeted skill areas including building and construction, business, law, IT, education, and health and community services. View the full list of Free TAFE courses.