Welcome to the Work Skills for Schools information page. We developed this page to provide information about the unique qualification we have put together for high school students. Feel free to contact us at any time if you have any questions. We are more than happy to visit your school.

Key Points

What is Work Skills?

The term ‘employability skills’ has been around for some time. However, there has been growing concern among industry and employers that while students leaving school, technical and vocational colleges, and universities had sound academic and technical subject matter skills, there was a significant need for core employability skills that would enable a person to join the workforce and be a productive versatile member of the workforce.

 

In 2012, we consulted with over fifty Australian organisations in a variety of industries to understand which skills were considered by industries and employers as the most important to have in potential employees, new employees and experienced employees. It came as little surprise that technical skills were not ranked in the highest valued skills.

 

The skills deemed most important to employers included:

  • Emotional intelligence and resilience
  • Communication
  • Collaboration and teamwork in a cross functional team
  • Time management and the ability to get things done
  • Self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Digital fluency
  • Creative fluency
  • Ethical and social fluency
  • Strategic problem solving
  • Leadership and entrepreneurship

 

We have chosen the term ‘work skills’ over ‘employability skills’. Industry feedback, as well as feedback from young people show that it is not enough for people just to be employable but it is equally if not more important for them to have the skills, knowledge, and attributes to hold a job, manage their self-improvement, and grow and progress in employment.  It is important to be able to remain relevant to a modern ever-changing workforce and be employable in a range of industries as these evolve and transform. The term “Work Skills’ is thus a broader and more holistic term that will encompass skills, knowledge, and attributes beyond just employability skills.  Although terms such as Soft Skills and Future Skills are sometimes used, we have included and incorporated all such skills under “Work Skills”.

 

Industry feedback consistently reveals a disconnect between the knowledge and skills school leavers and graduates possess, and the work and career enhancing skills, attitudes, and attributes required of them by industry and employers in the workplace.

 

The results of our consultation were not surprising and echo a number of increasing studies that have been conducted on the topic. A number of these studies along with some interesting facts are included in the video below.

 

 

The list of organisations consulted with includes:

  • Coca Cola Amatil
  • BHP Billiton
  • Rio Tinto
  • Mineral Resources
  • Main Roads Western Australia
  • Community Services & Health Industry Skills Council
  • Skills DMC
  • IBSA
  • Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council
  • McDermott Asia Pacific Pte Ltd
  • Careers Advisor, Guildford Grammar School
  • Australian Production & Inventory Control Society apicsAU
  • West Australian Football Commission
  • Pyramid Group (Aust) Pty Ltd
  • Alcoa of Australia
  • Emergency and Major Event Section, Operations Planning Coordinator, South Australia Police
  • Town of Gawler, Out of School Hours Care
  • Group Training Coordinator, Mineral Resources
  • Master Builders’ Association (MBA)
  • Disability Employment Services, Participation, Training & Employment
  • UnitingCare SA

We have also studied a number of UNESCO meetings held specifically to address the whole question of addressing the employability and work readiness of young people around the world.

Why the Work Skills program is needed for Schools

The Work Skills being demanded by employers are hard to embed into existing School curriculums simply because the outcomes achieved at the end of the school period relating to these skills are often intangible.

 

We created the work skills program to solve this specific problem: to provide a tangible, Australian nationally recognised, schools curriculum and standards authority recognised program for School Children across Australia.

 

The Work Skills program differs significantly from other foundational skills programs and ‘job preparation’ programs in several ways:

  • It focuses on building and practicing the soft skills – with particular emphasis on why they are important
  • It requires students to understand the world of work, how and why businesses exist, and to have an appreciation for life when viewed as a producer – not just a consumer
  • There is a significant amount of self-reflection that is not found in other courses
  • It requires students to think like entrepreneurs and to build and take ownership of their ‘own’ businesses
  • It requires students to wear several job roles and to collaborate with their peers in new ways
  • It emphasises effective communication and interaction with all levels in the workplace, creative and critical thinking, analytical skills, problem-solving, and ability to work independently, the five major work skills identified by industry and employers generally as lacking in school leavers and fresh graduates.

 

The process of developing the nationally accredited Work Skills qualifications

To develop a holistic solution for Work Skills, we needed to build a Nationally Recognised Qualification. The following roadmap indicates our story so far and highlights the amount of investment that has gone into developing this program for Schools.

 

2012-2013

  • Consultation with industry
  • Development of units
  • Preparation of course materials

2013-2014

  • Submission for approval with Australian Skills Quality Authority
  • Validation and moderation
  • Successful copyright and ownership of course

2017

  • Development of marketing materials
  • Begin approaching school authorities
  • Development of session-based delivery for schools

2018

  • Pilot program with Lake Joondalup Baptist College
  • Revision 2 of course
  • Taking expressions of interest for second pilot program

The qualifications available and how they differ

AITT have developed three specific solutions to implement Work Skills for Schools

  1. Work Ready Skillset
  2. Certificate III in Work Skills
  3. Certificate IV in Work Skills

 

Work Ready Skillset

The Work Ready Skillset is designed to prepare students for a successful work placement. The workplace is challenging and requires us to have a wide range of skills. Beyond technical skills, individuals need ‘soft’ skills such as communication, problem-solving, empathy and teamwork. An understanding of ‘always be learning’ is also important in life and work. The course will ensure work placements are successful and students can reflect on their experience in the workplace for future learning and career planning.

 

Graduates of the Work Ready Skillset will be able to:

  • Make a presentation both verbally and visually
  • Plan create and complete work goals and schedules
  • Plan to facilitate workplace teams, and review own performance
  • Communicate effectively, encouraging others, building trust and confidence in self and others

 

Units of Competency

BSBCMM401 – Make a presentation

BSBINN301 – Promote innovation in a team environment

FSKLRG14 – Manage strategies for career progression

BSBWOR202 – Organise and complete daily work activities

 

Suggested Timelines for Completion

The skillset can be completed as weekly 1-hour sessions for 18 weeks start beginning of Term 1. This can be customised to suit your needs and your planning system (ie SEQTA).

 

See Part 6 (below) for delivery and assessment of Work Skills program for schools.

 

Certificate III in Work Skills

The Certificate III in Work Skills is best delivered as a full year program over a minimum 40 sessions. It is a robust course that challenges students to build the skills they will need when entering work for the first time. Students will be required to think in new ways and solve problems they would not normally encounter in the school environment.

At the end of the program, students will have all the skills from the Work Ready Skillset, plus:

  • Finding a job in today’s environment and using social media to build networks, along with preparing for modern interviews
  • Using the internet to do research and find answers appropriately
  • Understanding the fundamentals of commercial awareness, the different types of businesses and what makes businesses succeed or fail
  • Developing techniques in resilience and emotional intelligence including how to engage your logical brain before your emotional brain and how to think about others’ feelings before you speak
  • Techniques on how to think creatively and innovatively and why this is an important skill to bring to the workplace
  • Developing an entrepreneur mindset
  • Contribution to team effectiveness
  • Organisation of personal work priorities and development
  • Application of strategies to respond to complex workplace problems
  • Analysis, collaboration and communication of innovative and creative ideas
  • Undertaking of negotiations
  • Positive image (speech, grooming, communication, intelligence skills)

 


Units of Competency

WSECMB301A – Develop commercial awareness

WSEPRO301A – Perform in a professional and ethical manner

BSBWHS201 – Contribute to health and safety of self and others

BSBWOR301 – Organise personal work priorities and development

BSBWOR203 – Work effectively with others

WSERES301A – Contribute to the development of a resilient workplace

BSBCRT301 – Develop and extend critical and creative thinking skills

BSBSUS201 – Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices

BSBFLM303 – Contribute to effective workplace relationships

FSKOCM11 – Use oral communication skills to facilitate workplace teams

BSBCUE307 – Work effectively in customer engagement

 

Suggested Timelines for Completion

The Certificate III can be completed as weekly 1-hour sessions for 40 to 72 weeks starting at the beginning of Term 1. This can be customised to suit your calendar.

See part 6 for delivery and assessment with AITT.

 

Certificate IV in Workskills

The Certificate IV in Work skills builds a skillset that is more appropriate for those who already have some understanding of what it means to have a job.  Although the Certificate III is not a pre-requisite, it is recommended that at minimum, the Work Ready Skillset is completed as a minimum.

 

Graduates of the Certificate IV in Work Skills and Career Enhancement will be able to gain skills such as:

  • How to manage their job and how to establish where they fit in an organization
  • Understand the fundamentals of career progression
  • Managing work and life balance and dealing with stressors
  • Applying commercial awareness to improve a business
  • Applying creativity in problem solving for organisations
  • How to present ideas to groups and take on constructive criticism to improve
  • Using emotional intelligence and resilience to build meaningful relationships
  • Understanding the fundamentals of business ethics and behaving with integrity
  • How to display leadership characteristics regardless of position
  • How to prioritise tasks and develop strong work habits
  • How to be an ‘entrepreneur’ to innovate and disrupt within an organization

 

Units of Competency

WSEPRO401A  – Conduct and model professional and ethical behaviours

WSECMB401A  – Develop and cultivate commercial awareness

WSERES401A   – Participate in the development of workplace resilience

WSEINI401A     – Analyse, collaborate and communicate innovative and creative ideas

BSBWOR402A – Promote Team Effectiveness

CHCCOM403A – Use targeted communications skills to build relationships

BSBCMM501A  – Develop and nurture relationships

BSBMGT401A  – Show leadership in the workplace

BSBWOR404B – Develop work priorities

HLTAMBPD401C – Manage personal stressors in the workplace

BSBMGT403A – Implement continuous improvement

BSBCRT401A – Articulate, present and debate ideas

 

Suggested Timelines for Completion

The Certificate III can be completed as weekly 1-hour sessions for 40 to 72 weeks starting at the beginning of Term 1. This can be customised to suit your calendar.

See part 6 for delivery and assessment with AITT.

How to implement the Work Skills program for schools

Every high school is different. We have consulted with public, Independent and Catholic schools in Western Australia to develop some suggested pathways. The most important thing to keep in mind is that our solution can and will be tailored to work for your school. We want our partner schools to take ownerships of the programs and mould them to your requirements.

 

The four suggested implementation models include:

Work Skills 3-Year Pathway

The 3-Year Pathway for high schools runs from Year 10 to Year 12 as shown below:

  • Year 10: Work Ready Skillset (mandatory for all students)
  • Year 11: Certificate III in Work Skills (open for application by all students)
  • Year 12: Certificate IV in Work Skills (by offer to specific students)

The 3-year pathway is designed as a possible to solution to embed tangible Work Skills and Employability Skills requirements across the School cohort.

Single Work Skills Qualifications

The Work Skills qualifications can be offered by themselves as part of the VET in schools suite of offerings.

Safety-net Pathway

To get Work skills can be implemented as a safety-net for at risk students who require additional credits and who need support to at minimum, gain the skills necessary entry level work.

Custom Pathway

AITT can develop any custom pathway to fit your School. Some pathways being discussed with other schools include:

  • Cert III Work Skills as part of all students who undertake apprenticeships / traineeships / internships
  • Cert III Work Skills program for high achieving students
  • Cert III Work Skills as part of specific curriculum overhauls (for example, revamping the IT curriculum to embed Work Skills)
  • Double qualification offerings – embedding work skills as part of other certificates (such as Business)

Cost and Delivery and Assessment of Work Skills program for schools

The cost of the Work Skills Program for Schools is:

  • Work Ready Skillset: $350 per student
  • Certificate III Work Skills: $550 per student
  • Certificate IV Work Skills: $750 per student

 

The suggest delivery method is:

  • Face-to-face delivery in class by your school teachers with support from AITT
  • We usually provide in-class support at the start of the program and maintain regular contact with you and your students
  • AITT will break the qualification into the number of sessions you require and help you upload the sessions to your planner (ie SEQTA)
  • We will run through all materials, assessments and activities with you
  • We will take you through a familiarisation of our online learning management system (Canvas by Instructure) which is used to store all the assessments in digital format. An overview of the system can be seen here
  • Teachers are required to hold a current Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

 

Assessments:

  • All assessments will be facilitated by the Teacher
  • AITT will mark all assessments and provide feedback to your students
  • Your students and you will have full visibility of course progress throughout