Adult learners week – what will you learn?

Today is the first day of spring—a time for renewal. Today is also the first day of Adult Learners Week.

Learning is the foundation of foundation skills. Learning underpins everything!

So what opportunities does Adult Learners Week pose:

  • to help you learn something new
  • to help you help your learners learn something new – and in the process, build their learning skills?

Here are some ideas for things you can try, or encourage your learners to try, this week:

Start today!

See what learning events Adult Learning Australia suggests this week.

Establish a routine

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.

Jim Ryun – Multiple world record holder in running

Start a personal learning routine, and encourage your learners to do the same. Little and often usually works best. For example, perhaps you (or your learners) could:

  • listen to a podcast while walking the dog
  • in the first few minutes of your weekly classes, establish a ‘one thing we have learned this week’ sharing session
  • follow someone you admire and can learn from, on social media
  • set a goal of learning one new thing each day, then at the of each day before bed, identify what you learned—perhaps keep a learning journal by your bed, so you can add what you learned that day, before turning out the light
  • plan regular conversations with peers, supervisors or friends—it’s amazing how much we learn through informal conversation!
  • take a course or attend an event (for example, the one below).

Join a national conversation on adult literacy approaches

Free live, online panel discussion on 08 September 2021, 1-2:30pm AEST

Adult Learning Australia has brought together a panel of literacy experts to discuss literacy approaches.

Click here for more information and to register.

Please share your ideas!

If you know of any other events, good reads, great podcasts, or more that might interest others, please add them to the comments.

Happy learning!

Do you have experience with TAELLN411? If so, we want your feedback!

TAELLN411 Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills is a unit of competency that describes the skills, knowledge and abilities that trainers and assessors need to help their learners develop the LLN skills needed for competence.

TAELLN411 is also a core (required) unit in TAE40116 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (Cert IV TAE, for short).

ACAL wants your feedback about TAELLN411 – the good and the bad, and ways to improve it!

If you are familiar with TAELLN411 – the Australian Council for Adult Literacy (ACAL) wants you!

We expect that the TAE Training Package will soon undergo a review. With this in mind, peak bodies like ACAL are gathering feedback from industry, now.

Your feedback is confidential and will be used to inform future versions of this unit of competency. So now’s your chance to have a say about changes you recommend to TAELLN411, or about strengths that should be retained.

“When is the deadline?” I hear you ask

ACAL will be accepting submissions until 30 July 2021.

How to provide feedback

To provide feedback, complete this short survey.

You may also provide more detailed feedback by emailing Jo Medlin, President of ACAL via acalpresident2020@gmail.com

Skills urgency

I was intrigued by this title of a recent report by the Australian Industry Group (AIG), written about Australian workforce needs. The report directly references digital literacy as an area of need, and indirectly references other foundation skills that Australian works need, if they are to succeed in today’s constantly-evolving world of work.

I decided to write a post about how—in my opinion—vocational trainers can focus on foundation skills to help their adult learners meet these skilling needs.

In the post, I make two key points about how to use foundation skills effectively in vocational education and training. These are:

  • the need to focus on the full range of foundation skills
  • the idea that all learners benefit when we focus on foundation skills in our training.

Read the full post on the Blackwater Projects website.

If you are a trainer who is looking for resources and information about foundation skills and how to incorporate them into your training, have a look through this site, in particular:

The case for a national policy on adult literacy

The Australian Council for Adult Literacy (ACAL), is an association that promotes adult literacy and numeracy policy and practice across Australia.

Earlier this year, ACAL made a submission to the Parliament of Australia’s

Standing Committee on Education and Employment, about adult literacy and its importance.

Summary of ACAL’s submission

ACAL would like to see a nationwide policy that establishes everyone’s right to a basic level of literacy.

ACAL’s recommendations for such a nationwide policy are based on five principles:

  1. To be literate and numerate is a human right.
  2. The Australian Government accepts that free and equitable access to lifelong and life-wide basic literacy and numeracy education is a social responsibility and provides provision accordingly.
  3. People’s reading and writing needs encompass more than those required at work. They may involve supporting their children’s education, participating in their community’s activities, managing their financial affairs, dealing with bureaucracy, and undertaking leisure activities for wellbeing and enriched life experiences.
  4. Ongoing literacy and numeracy development opportunities are required to ensure and increase each Australian’s ability to respond to events such as pandemics, natural disasters, economic impacts, and increased online demands. As day-to-day demands change and increase, this assistance must be at all proficiency levels, not only at the most basic.
  5. There is a requirement for a full range of literacy learning practices to be available post- school as a second chance at further learning.

Recommended policy content should include:

  • access to training opportunities to develop all aspects of adult literacy and numeracy.
  • a range of modes is required to ensure all aspects of adult literacy and numeracy need are addressed.
  • the continuation of the Reading-Writing Hotline
  • the renewal of the adult literacy and numeracy workforce that would support research-informed, contemporary design and delivery of programs that are responsive to the literacy and numeracy demands experienced by adults. 
  • a funded resource centre that collates new research in the field as well as good practice materials, publishes them
  • updated research into the Australian field of adult literacy and numeracy is required

More information

Download a pdf ACAL’s full submission here.

You can see submissions from other parties here.

2020: the year of the Digital Literacy Skills Framework

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2020 was a year for change. I’m sure you didn’t need me to tell you that. With the obvious pandemic-driven changes to our professional and personal lives this year, you may have overlooked this very important (and timely) complement to the five core skills in the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF).

Digital Literacy Skills Framework

Earlier this year, the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) commissioned the development of the Digital Literacy Skills Framework (DLSF).

This work was undertaken by by Philippa McLean (Project Manager) and Jenni Oldfield, both experts and industry leaders in foundation skills.

The DLSF is at the validation stage, and remains to be finalised.

We expect—and hopethat the DLSF will eventually be incorporated into the ACSF publication, but for now:

  • the original five core skills remain in the ACSF.
  • Digital Literacy is presented separately, as the DLSF.

Implications of the DLSF for VET practitioners

The DLSF is an important tool used in DESE‘s Foundation Skills for Your Future program. Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) offering this program are already using the DLSF.

But in 2020, digital skills became important to everyone—not just people involved in the Foundation Skills for your Future program:

  • Australian workers had to extend their digital skills to learn to work from home and/or adapt to new job requirements
  • digital inclusion became more important than ever before
  • the need for vocational trainers to both learn and teach digital skills became even more essential for students to achieve program outcomes.

So, the DLSF is a valuable resource for all VET practitioners. We can use the DLSF to help ourselves and our students identify and build the digital skills necessary for competence, and to thrive in today’s world of work.

More about the DLSF

Philippa and Jenni have generously offered this PowerPoint to tell us more about the content and structure of the DLSF:

More downloads

ACSF

Download the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF).

DLSF

Download the Digital Literacy Skills Framework (DLSF).

Questions, comments or feedback?

At last! Evidence that investment in adult literacy and numeracy pays off… in a BIG way!

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Foreward

Thanks to Dave Tout—senior research fellow with ACER—for this exciting and informative post with news of some welcome data that confirms the benefits to be gained from an investment in adults’ literacy and numeracy skills.

In the article, Dave:

  • summarises historical research that explains why “…the challenges presented by adults with low basic skills may lead to Australia being left behind…” (OECD, 2017, p. 9)
  • outlines how hard it has been historically, to gather data that shows the impact of adult literacy and numeracy programs on individuals, organisations and communities
  • introduces recent research findings that show a whopping 520% return on investment in adult literacy and numeracy programs!

Want details?  Read on!

 

LLN counts – 26TEN study into the value of investing in improving adults’ literacy and numeracy skills

by Dave Tout

A recent report from Tasmania makes very interesting reading for anyone wanting to know about the benefits and value of investing in improving adults’ literacy and numeracy skills in VET, the workplace, and as part of lifelong learning.

The social and economic benefits of investing in adult literacy and numeracy and the costs of poor adult literacy and numeracy in Australia are key policy issues and questions. In the 2000s, Robyn Hartley and Jackie Horne (2006a, 2006b) undertook reviews and analysis about the social and economic benefits of improving adult literacy, and concluded this was a challenging endeavour especially in relation to estimating the benefits across contexts such as health, finance, family relationships and crime, rather than just focusing on traditional economic areas, such as productivity and the labour market outcomes.

Based on three cycles of international assessments of adult literacy and numeracy skills (IALS, ALLS and PIAAC), research indicates, among a number of other findings, that people with higher literacy and numeracy skills are significantly more likely to be employed, to participate in their community, to experience better health, and to engage in further training. They also earn more on average (see OECD, 2013; OECD, 2016).  As well, the research demonstrates that each extra year of education improves literacy and numeracy skills. The 2017 OECD country report on Australia, claimed that “the challenges presented by adults with low basic skills may lead to Australia being left behind in terms of innovation and economic growth by countries that have been more successfully investing in the skills of all their people.” (OECD, 2017, p. 9)

Putting a value on the investments and returns

There have been very few attempts in Australia though that have attempted to quantify the return on investment, especially in relation to workplace literacy and numeracy. In 2012, the Australian Industry Group contracted the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) to conduct a study into the financial return to employers from investing in workplace literacy training programs. This study developed and trialled a set of data collection instruments in pilot mode with seven training programs funded under the Workplace English Language and Literacy (WELL) program. The outcomes of this research again documented the complexity and challenges of quantifying the return on investment for employers and businesses if they invest in improving the literacy and numeracy skills of their workers. This report (Brown et al, 2015) documents the process and instruments used, the positive outcomes for businesses, and also has a comprehensive review of research in this area.

New Tasmanian research via 26TEN gives a value

A new report has recently been released that has calculated the cost benefits from adult literacy and numeracy programs across Tasmania in 2018-19. This research was auspiced by 26TEN in Tasmania, a very proactive organisation that works with businesses, community groups, government, education and training providers and individuals, to support all Tasmanian adults to develop the reading, writing, numeracy and communications skills they need for life in the 21st century.

The study, called the Socio-Economic Impact of Tasmania’s Investment in Adult Literacy and Numeracy, was conducted by the Institute of Project Management. The study used a model of cost-benefit analysis to quantify the social, economic and cultural contribution that the 26TEN Tasmania Strategy makes to program participants, businesses and the broader community. The socio-economic value created by the 26TEN Tasmania Strategy in 2018-19, was estimated to be at least $27.2 million, based on an investment of $5.3 million. The report showed that the return on investment to the community from the 26TEN Tasmania Strategy in 2018-19 was at least $5.20 for every dollar spent.  The report argues that investment in adult literacy improves individual and community states of physical, human, social and symbolic capital.

Some of the other outcomes reported

In examining the specific impact of the 26TEN grants and the Libraries Tasmania literacy service that were studied, the research also found that:

  • Over 80 percent of literacy clients surveyed said that their opportunities for employment and further education had improved as their level of literacy improved.
  • Over 90 percent of literacy clients indicated that their quality of life has improved as a result of improved functional literacy.
  • Literacy clients completed an average of 50 literacy sessions. The majority were reluctant to put an end date on their participation, and many observed that each goal they achieved led to new aspirational targets.

The research wanted to be able to document that all Tasmanians, not just policy makers, can be confident that building literacy and numeracy skills in adults across the state, not only benefits those adults, but also their families, and our communities and workplaces.

It certainly appears that this has been the case!

 

Resources and references

Resources

Read the Report: 26TEN Tasmania – the Socio-Economic Impact of Tasmania’s Investment in Adult Literacy and Numeracy.

References

Brown, J., Taylor, M., McKenzie, P., & Perkins, K. (2015). Investing in Workforce Literacy Pays: Building Employer Commitment to Workplace Language, Literacy and Numeracy Programs. Australian Industry Group: Melbourne. https://research.acer.edu.au/transitions_misc/27

Hartley, Robyn. & Horne, Jackie, (2006a) Researching Literacy and Numeracy Costs and Benefits: What is possible. Literacy and Numeracy Studies: An international journal in the education and training of adults, Vol 15 No 1, 2006 https://doi.org/10.5130/lns.v15i1.2024

Hartley, Robyn. & Horne, Jackie. (2006b).  Social and economic benefits of improved adult literacy : towards a better understanding. Adelaide, S. Aust :  NCVER https://ncver.edu.au/research-and-statistics/publications/all-publications/social-and-economic-benefits-of-improved-adult-literacy-towards-a-better-understanding

Muller, Paul & Knapp, Don (2020). The Socio-Economic Impact of Tasmania’s Investment in Adult Literacy and Numeracy July 2018 – June 2019.  Institute of Project Management. https://26ten.tas.gov.au/resources/Documents/SocioEconomicImpactTasmaniasInvestmentAdultLiteracyNumeracy.PDF

OECD. (2013). OECD skills outlook 2013: First results from the survey of adult skills. Paris: OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264204256-en

OECD. (2016). Skills matter: Further results from the survey of adult skills. OECD skills studies. Paris: OECD Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1787/9789264258051-en

OECD. (2017). Building skills for all in Australia: Policy insights from the survey of adult skills.OECD skills studies. Paris: OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264281110-en

OECD (2019). Skills matter: Additional results from the Survey of Adult Skills, Paris: OECD Skills Studies series. OECD Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1787/1f029d8f-en

A gentle new beginning

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LLN and VET Meeting Place—a refresh and re-purpose

This is Chemène Sinson writing.  I am one of LLN and VET Meeting Place’s two founding members.

I’m writing with a gentle statement to let you know that we have begun to refresh and re-purpose the LLN and VET Meeting Place site.  I say ‘gentle’ because it will be a gradual process.

We’ve already begun updating.  I have updated most pages on the site, as well as all links in the resource repository.  Next steps will be gradual as we work out how to tidy up formatting so we can easily add new resources as they come to our attention.

For more information about the re-purposed LLN and VET Meeting Place, including how you can support us, see about this site.

 

New article about Numeracy – and more!

While I’m writing, I thought I’d mention this fascinating survey paper that I learned about just a few days ago.

Australia’s Dave Tout worked with Iddo Gal, Anke Grotluschen and Gabriele Kaiser to write a survey paper titled, Numeracy, adult education and vulnerable adults:  a critical view of a neglected field.

This paper is loaded with practical insights. Read it to learn more about:

  • what global research is telling us about numeracy and the relationship between numeracy, adult education and emerging vulnerabilities that may result if educators don’t focus on the ‘right’ aspects of numeracy in their learning programs
  • five domains of numeracy and the functional, critical, interactional and decisional ways we must work in these domains – this information helped me identify ways to focus my attention on numeracy when I facilitate learning.

That’s it for now. I likely won’t post much for a while, but watch out for the progressive revamp of the resource repository over the coming weeks.

Time for change

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After 3.5 years, 43 posts and countless friendships made, we have decided to discontinue adding new posts to the LLN and VET Meeting Place site.  But this doesn’t mean that LLN and VET Meeting Place won’t continue.  Read on…

A new start

We are grateful for the comments we continue to receive, telling us how valuable LLN and VET Meeting Place is as a single source of information, resources and strategies covering LLN and other foundation skills.  Thanks to this, we are currently negotiating a new home for LLN and VET Meeting Place.   We want to hand over the management of the site to people who can give it the attention it deserves, and make the site ‘sing’.

What’s next?

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For now…

The LLN and VET site will remain published.  You can still access:

  • resources
  • posts
  • us.

You’ll hear from us again

In coming months we’ll add one final post when we have news to share about the ‘new look’ LLN and VET Meeting Place, and how to access it.  This may take some time.

In the meantime, we hope you’ll continue to visit this site regularly and remain subscribed, so you’ll be among the first to learn what the future site will look like.

Watch this space!

Cheers,

Ann and Chemène

P.S. A heartfelt ‘thank you’

Thank you for your support of the tips, facts, resource links, and suggestions we posted each month.  Thank you for your comments, conversations and emails, and for sharing the site with others.  We appreciate your feedback and encouragement and look forward to staying in touch.

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One strategy for each ACSF (LLN) skill

We are often asked for the ‘one strategy’ that will make the most difference, or will be the solution for most training contexts and learners. If only there was one top tip.

Strategies relevant to your training and workplace contexts, learner cohort, delivery mode, and delivery resources may be very different to others.  Research can also shed new light on specific strategies and approaches.

This blog offers a strategy for each of the 5 Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF) Language Literacy and Numeracy (LLN) skills – Learning, Reading, Writing, Oral Communication, and Numeracy.

The tips are are not  THE ONE and ONLY best strategy. They have been selected due to current available research about that aspect, or frequently asked questions.

  1. Learning
  2. Reading
  3. Writing
  4. Oral Communication 
  5. Numeracy

1 Learning: Focus on feedback

The research related to Learning is flourishing as more is understood about how the brain works. One key tip that supports  a person to learn is feedback. (Shank, P. 2017, Practice and Feedback for Deeper Learning). Feedback to learners is critical in the adult education and workplace training context. 

We have written in more detail about the value of feedback to learners through the formative assessment stage, especially feedback about the learners’ foundation skills progress. You can recap the  strategies in our blog titled Focus on formative assessment to build foundation skills.

How do you work out what you will say to the learners so that they are supported to move forward with the task and continue to develop or practice the required foundation skill/s?

Tailored learner feedback can depend on the range and depth of the ‘data’ available to you. For many trainers, learners’ assessment task responses provide the first indication of  foundation skill progress. Communication with learners may also be possible. The emphasis is usually on what else the learner could or should do.

Have you considered checking in with all learners to obtain broader information about the training delivery elements that impact learning? There may be aspects about the training delivery that could or should be altered.

The ACER offers a Student perception of teaching questionnaire. Its purpose is to improve the quality of teaching and learning. The ACER questionnaire covers the following areas:

Learning environment

  1. Respect and rapport
  2. The learning culture
  3. Managing classroom activities
  4. Managing student behaviour

Teaching practices

  1. Purposeful teaching
  2. Effective teaching strategies
  3. Student engagement
  4. Assessment and feedback

Although this survey presents with a skew towards face to face based learning – it does still happen in the VET sector!- rapport, culture, activities and behaviour also relate to on-line/remote learning delivery.

Check the student survey administered by your RTO. What feedback about the learning environment and instruction strategies does it provide? Perhaps develop your own tool to obtain learner feedback about the learning environment and instruction strategies, or explore and implement the ACER tool to obtain learners’ perspectives.

2 Reading: Focus on skills to read between the lines

It’s likely that your training and assessment requires learners to read a range of work-based texts. Some adult learners commence training with a limited range of reading skills based on the familiar ‘comprehension’ style questions. This literal approach seeks to know if the reader can identify the who, what, when, where, and why answers.

It is not unusual to hear learners say – ‘the answer is not in here’ when they attempt an inferential question or a question requiring them to interpret the text content (required for ACSF Reading Level 3 or 4)

Competent readers demonstrate the capacity to infer and interpret at ACSF Levels 3 and 4:

  • ACSF Level 3: integrate, interpret, simple extrapolating, simple inference, simple abstracting
  • ACSF Level 4: extract, extrapolate, infer, reflect, abstract

(from the ACSF variables Reading at ACSF Level 3 and ACSF level 4)

If you are after a strategy to build learners’ skills to infer, interpret, or, read between the lines, try to change the question format to require deeper thinking or comparison.

For example: add must, would, can/could, will, might or should to the simple question starters What?, Who?, When?, Where?, How? and Why? 

ACSF Level 3 (involves reading routine texts with some unfamiliar information)

  • How could this problem be solved differently?
  • Why might the author have said ….?
  • What can the purpose of …?
  • What other opportunities should this provide?
  • How would things be different if….?

ACSF Level 4 (involves reading a range of complex texts, unfamiliar and unpredictable)

  • For what purpose would someone read these?
  • What questions can these texts answer?
  • How must the concerns be raised about ….?
  • Why might there be advice about……?
  • How could the key themes be addressed?

 3 Writing: Focus on collaborative writing

Workplace writing skills are evolving. Increasingly workplaces connect with employees through www applications. Workers are expected to communicate collaboratively, and use a range of tools to communicate with colleagues and other workers. Think about the tools and strategies you use to communicate a written message with colleagues, or within your professional network.

Most training involves writing a workplace task – the report, the client note, the income and expense record, the instruction, the compliance documents.

A connected workplace means workers need additional writing skills. The writer must establish or maintain the connection and demonstrate expertise.

Sensitivities are involvedLearners need to learn and practice the subtleties of collaborative writing, Others will read the message,

  • Is the message clear?
  • Will it create the right impression?
  • Could it offend?
  • Does it reflect my expertise?

Professor Lesley Farrell – a workforce literacy expert. Says

“Collaborative writing is now a fundamental workplace practiceWhen we write, things are at stake with each utterance …. This is not the kind of writing we teach or assess.”

Professor Lesley Farrell, 31/5/16 Accessed from: http://tinyurl.com/z5j4lvh 

Professor Farrell spoke at VALBEC annual conference 16/5/19. She will speak at:

At each conference, Professor Farrell  will discuss findings concerning the Literacy 4.0 project which focuses on the gig economy, the smart factory,  and the implications for literacy educators in workplaces.

4 Oral Communication: Focus on pragmatic skills

The ACSF refers to selecting appropriate oral communication strategies for different contexts. 

The appropriateness of what is said in a given context is referred to as pragmatic skills; the social language skills we use in our daily interactions with others.  In some workplaces, pragmatics matter.

Below are the ACSF Oral Communication indicators for the first indicator at ACSF Level 3 and Level 4

3.07 Selects and uses appropriate strategies to establish and maintain spoken communication in familiar and some unfamiliar contexts
4.07 Demonstrates flexibility in spoken texts by choosing appropriate structures and strategies in a range of contexts

Research by Mavromaras, K. et al, 2017 The aged care workforce reports that communication between residents/clients/patients and workers was identified as an issue by 88% of respondents 

Sometimes what is appropriate must be made explicit. Research has pointed to the benefit of direct instruction on the use of pragmatic language – i.e. cultural rules and language tools – especially where building or maintaining relationships is involved.

“They are not features of  language we pick up just by being exposed to them in daily life.”

From Mackay Pip, 2018 Pragmatic language skills for CALD carers working in aged care VALBEC Fine Print 2018 Vol 1 #1

In workplace roles where building rapport is important, for example in aged care, it is appropriate to use these pragmatic skills to develop rapport to achieve designated tasks. This sector involves both clients and workers from increasingly culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Where training people to work in this sector is involved – include the pragmatic skills to promote or build social connection:

  • small talk (cultural rules)
  • and humour (language tools).

 5 Numeracy: Focus on numeracy, it’s a critical 21st century skill

We know we advised that we will offer one strategy for each core skill. For numeracy we offer one podcast with the lot!

David Tout is an Australian expert in Numeracy. In this short podcast he provides key messages about:

  • what international research says about numeracy skills in Australia
  • the impact of numeracy on success
  • the numeracy demands of the 21st century workplace
  • skills and strategies to build numeracy skills

Access the podcast recording here.

https://aspirelr.com.au/pages/news-media/podcast-library/the-n-in-lln-why-its-a-crucial-skill

 

We hope you have found at least one tip that you can implement, or trial, or find out more about.

Share what interests you.

What’s changed? Keep a step ahead

What’s changed? The bigger picture

The skills for the future emphasis began in 2016 with the introduction of megatrends, the Infotronics Age, and predictions of what will be necessary to adapt, survive, and thrive. At the time it was difficult to project to the future and grasp if, and how these forecasts may influence the work we do and the the work experienced by VET graduates.

Reflect on the work you do. Look at the frequency and processes used to communicate with colleagues and learners in close proximity, in distant regions of the nation, or overseas. What has changed? What has changed with practices and the emphasis on underpinning foundation skills within the industry you represent. What do employers want graduates to be able to do?

The following resources convey snapshot messages of complex scenarios for stakeholders in the education sector, including adult and vocational education and training. The subtle difference is that now three years of change has occurred, messages affecting skills required by graduates and trainers have emerged, alongside what is needed to achieve these objectives.

As you view or read each vignette, we encourage you to:

  • dig deep into the resources and its messages.
  • identify the embedded messages related to foundation skills.

Then, initiate conversation and discussion with colleagues, or  your professional networks. Ask:

  1. What’s really important here and what does it suggest for professional practice?
  2. What aspect/s can  I impact, or activate change within
  3. What are the impacts for learners and graduates if these forecasts are ignored?

1 A new vision for education

The initial image is misleading – this is not about primary school children. This World Economic Forum video exposes the challenges and changes ahead. The content reveals an array of aspects that will influence current and future thinking of all stakeholders in education. From relevancy of the education experience, to enabling individuals to structure their own learning outcomes, and the demand for soft skills – the social emotional or character skills – it’s all there.

This raises many questions, each worthy of discussion – for our future (the trainer) and the future for our learners.

2 Meeting the challenge: VET training  – it’s right now

This DET video (on the My Skills site) starts with ‘ the world of work is changing faster than ever …’. Listen to the following cross-section of training and employer voices as they share expectations and predictions about the skills workers need and the imperative for training to keep pace with industry developments.

  • Sara Caplan, CEO, PwC Skills for Australia
  • Mick Anstey, General Manager of People, Health Safety and Environment, Roy Hill
  • Michelle Hoad, Managing Director, North Metropolitan TAFE
  • Lori Tyrrell, Head of People and Culture, Health Engine
  • David Fyfe, Executive Manager, Western Power

 3  A new vision for teachers (trainers) – OECD

The OECD has opened discussion about preparing teachers for the 21st century challenges.

A common lament is that the chance to focus on instruction, delivery and meeting the the trainers’ professional development needs or interests can be steamrolled by the focus on compliance.

The OECD post emphasises the need to address the needs of the trainer – to bridge the gap between what is intended and desired with what is currently supported and available.

“There is a growing recognition that in order for teaching and learning to be most effective, teachers need to have high levels of well-being, self-efficacy and confidence. How can governments, in partnership with teachers’ unions, create evidence-informed strategies on well-being, efficacy and effectiveness as part of their teacher policies?”

https://tinyurl.com/ybvovpmj accessed 19/4/18

Has your rto initiated a discussion with this focus in mind?

4 Skilling our future workforce

The NCVER VOCED Plus  titled Focus on Skilling our Future Workforce offers a comprehensive overview of the skill changes experienced and predicted in the 21st century employment landscape. If you’re interested in a snapshot of current international and local reports that drive the key messages about skills required now  – for now and the future – then read this.

Specific attention is paid to the skills that are needed, and the skills needed to prepare young people and existing workers.

“…the life cycle of skills is now shorter than ever and the scale of change is unprecedented.”

…”importance of entrepreneurial skills and aptitudes ‘…

soft skill intensive occupations will account for two thirds of all jobs by 2030

http://www.voced.edu.au/focus-skilling-our-future-workers July 2017, p1

Deloitte Soft Skills for Business success. Adapted from pps 2 &17

What are soft skills? Non-technical skills, transferable skills, enterprise skills

Competencies : How workers  approach complex issues Character qualities: How workers approach the changing environment
Critical thinking & problem solving Curiosity & initiative
Creativity Persistence/grit & adaptability
Communication & collaboration Leadership
Social & cultural awareness

Deloitte Soft Skills for Business success. p 4

Where and how do you build learners’ soft skills within training?

ASQA Briefings 2018

We thought it important to bring this to your attention. The 2017 ASQA briefings signalled the importance of paying attention to foundation skills – particularly in assessment.

What may be revealed in the 2018 ASQA trainer briefings about foundation skills . Don’t be the last to find out. Keep a step ahead. May is the month the ASQA Trainer briefings start.

Don’t overlook this opportunity to hear from the source about issues or outcomes that may result in a shift in emphasis, or change in approach.

Click here to access the ASQA registration page.