School of Education

RAVE current research

Erica Smith is leading several projects on apprenticeship, funded by the International Labour Organization (ILO), during 2017-2018. The ILO is a United Nations agency.

For ILO’s Jakarta office, Research, Review and Development of a Revised Model of Quality Apprenticeship for Indonesia. This project has involved Erica in interviews with stakeholders in and near Jakarta, and collaboration with ILO staff to produce a new model for apprenticeship in Indonesia, which we presented at a tripartite meeting in Jakarta in September 2017.

For ILO’s Bangkok office, 2017 Research and preparation of chapter for publication on Skills and Future of Work: Strategies for Inclusive Growth in Asia and the Pacific. This project has involved research and analysis on the role of apprenticeships in addressing youth unemployment. Erica presented the results at a forum in Bangkok in October 20017: the Regional Skills Meeting on Skills and the Future of Work: Strategies for an Inclusive Growth in Asia and the Pacific’. The forum consisted of international experts and tripartite participants from six countries. Feedback is being incorporated into a final version which will be disseminated through a book to be prepared by the ILO.

For ILO’s Geneva office, Erica Smith with the assistance of RAVE member Jackie Tuck, is working on a project Collaboration on ILO survey report of national initiatives to promote quality apprenticeships in G20 countries. This research project is on G20 countries’ policy initiatives on apprenticeships. This project involves the analysis of data from a survey sent by the ILO to three respondents in each country, representing government, labour unions and employer bodies. The context for the project can be seen in the G20 Hangzhou communique (item 40) at

Erica Smith is leading an Australian Research Council Linkage project to investigate the question:
"Would more highly-qualified teachers and trainers help to address quality problems in the Australian vocational education and training system?" This project brings together researchers from Federation University Australia, the University of Technology, Sydney and the University of South Australia to work with partners from the National Centre for Vocational Education Research, the VET Development Centre, the Australian Council for Private Education and Training, TAFE Queensland and Federation Training.

This project examines whether and how higher-level qualifications for vocational education and training (VET) teachers would improve quality in the VET system. Government documents and public commentary indicate that the VET sector suffers from some fairly serious quality problems. This is significant because VET provides training that underpins all Australian industries. Most VET teachers are qualified only to a Certificate IV level, at least in VET teaching. A more highly qualified VET teaching workforce may lead to improvements in quality; however there is currently no firm evidence to establish this link. The project set out to provide much-needed evidence to guide policy.

Annette Foley's most recent work involves a project funded by Federation University Australia looking at out-of-school VET and ACE programs in the Ballarat and Daylesford region.