VET research events

OctoberVET events

Each October or November, RAVE hosts an 'OctoberVET' event open to all members of the community, and is of particular interest to VET professionals, teachers and trainers, school careers staff and teachers, Group Training Organisations, people working with young people and industry HR/Learning and Development Managers.

The research-based event on vocational education and training is part of the series of annual national ‘OctoberVET’ events around Australia, an activity of the Australian Vocational Education and Training Research Association (AVETRA), see

OctoberVET Ballarat events are notified on this web site; or email us to be placed on our mailing list. You will also receive RAVE newsletters if you subscribe. Email:

This year RAVE hosted the fourteenth annual OctoberVET event online, on November 25 2021, 11:00-12:30pm. The theme of the event was ‘Beyond COVID’.

The event was open to all members of the community. The research-based event was part of the series of annual national ‘OctoberVET’ events around Australia, an activity of the Australian Vocational Education and Training Research Association (AVETRA).

Program of OctoberVET 2021 (pdf, 266kb)

View the presentations for OctoberVET 2021

Gary Workman – Apprenticeships: What will it take? (Keynote) (pptx, 1935kb)

Erica Smith, Richard Robinson and Darryn Snell – The curious case of jobs and training in retail and hospitality (pptx, 3180kb)

Anthony Pearce – Teacher-student relationships in alternative secondary education (pptx, 61kb)

Peter Fieger – VET student outcomes during COVID-19 (pptx, 948kb)

Barry Golding and Annette Foley – ‘… and now Women’s Sheds’: Broadening the scope of the community-based Shed field internationally' (pptx, 57kb)

This year RAVE hosted the twelfth annual OctoberVET event at Ballarat, on November 14 2019, 12.30-4.30pm  commencing with lunch, at the SMB Campus (Tech Park), Ballarat. The theme of the event was ‘Supporting young people into their futures:  Research and practice.’ The event was open to all members of the community. The research-based event was part of the series of annual national ‘OctoberVET’ events around Australia, an activity of the Australian Vocational Education and Training Research Association (AVETRA), see

Program for OctoberVET 2019 (pdf 51kb)

View the presentations for OctoberVET 2019:

This year Ballarat hosted the 11th ‘OctoberVET’ conference on November 7, 2018 at SMB Campus, Ballarat. The theme was ‘Apprenticeships and Traineeships: Research, Policy and Practice’.

The conference featured presentations on new Victorian policy developments in apprenticeships and traineeships from Carl Walsh (Manager, Tertiary Education Policy and Strategy, Department of Education and Training Victoria) and an international perspective on apprenticeships in the G20 countries from Erica Smith and Jackie Tuck, from Federation University. The event also included presentations from Denielle Beardmore on industry-led traineeships in nursing, organised by Ballarat Health Services in partnership with Federation University; and from Gary Workman on the transition of mature aged workers into a new field of work via an apprenticeship.

In presentations on research carried out as part of research programs at FedUni, Barry Wright presented on the effectiveness of fully on-the-job training for carpentry apprenticeships, while Liam Frost-Camilleri spoke of perceptions of apprentices’ literacy and numeracy skill. The event concluded with participants reflecting on policy and practice implications of the day and a panel discussion with three expert panellists. 26 people attended the event.

The program (pdf, 152kb) and presentations can be accessed below.

Erica Smith and Jackie Tuck (pptx, 4.8MB)

Barry Wright (pptx, 2.6MB)

Carl Walsh (pptx, 2MB)

Gary Workman (pptx, 2.4MB)

Liam Frost-Camilleri (pptx, 97kb)

Denielle Beardmore (pdf, 1.8MB)

The tenth anniversary OctoberVET at Ballarat was on November 9 2017 at the SMB Campus, Ballarat. It had the theme ‘Training for industry’. It featured two well-known external speakers, Gary Workman (Apprenticeship Employment Network, Victoria) and Llandis Barratt-Pugh (Edith Cowan University), and an overview of a recent research project by RAVE researchers on employer training that was funded by the NCVER. The event also showcased Fed College’s partnership with IBM in an international program for senior secondary school students: P-TECH; and Fed Uni’s international research on apprenticeships, funded by the International Labour Organization. 45 people attended.

The program (pdf, 43kb) and presentations can be accessed below.

For the ninth year running, RAVE (Researching Adult and Vocational Education) has hosted an ‘OctoberVET’ event. This year the Ballarat event took place at the SMB Campus in Lydiard St, central Ballarat on Tuesday 18 October. The theme was ‘Teaching, training and learning: VET’s true business.’

The keynote speakers reported on two major projects in this area, ‘Investigating quality teaching in the Victorian VET sector’(Project leader: Ruth Schubert, funded by the Victorian government), and ‘What makes a good VET teacher/trainer, and how do you get there?’ (Project leader: Erica Smith, funded by the Australian Research Council). There were four other presentations about VET teaching/training and learning, three of which had an international flavour.

Presentations from OctoberVET 2016 at Ballarat can be accessed here:

On September 1st and 2nd FedUni's Mt Helen Campus hosted the 6th International Network on Innovative Apprenticeship (INAP) conference for the first time in Australia.

INAP was hosted by co-chair of INAP, Erica Smith, and included keynote speeches from Dr Raymond Patel (MERSETA); Dr Paul Comyn (International Labor Organisation) and Professor Stephen Billett (Griffith Uni), and was opened by Minister Simon Birmingham. Minister Birmingham was at the time Assistant Minister for Education and Training and is now the Minister for Education and Training.

The conference was sponsored by the Commonwealth Department of Education and Training, and attracted presentations from world leading apprenticeship researchers, with 35 papers presented, from 12 countries. There was also a panel of Worldskills finalists and Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors.

Conference papers can be seen at www.inap.uni-bremen and the formal book of the conference papers can be purchased from Australian Scholarly Publishing.