The $18.5 million pilot will assist higher education providers to deliver microcredentials in the priority areas of education, health, IT, engineering and sciences – in partnership with industry.
Under Round 1, Table A higher education providers were eligible to apply for a share of $2 million in funding to design microcredentials. They will also receive a share of the remaining $16.5 million for delivering the course to students.
Round 2 will provide funding to Table A, Table B, Table C and non-university higher education providers to support the delivery of microcredentials, including those developed as part of Round 1.
These new microcredential courses will be delivered to up to 1,500 students from 2023 to 2024 and up to another 2,500 students in 2025 to 2026. Students enrolled in microcredential courses funded under the pilot will be eligible for FEE-HELP assistance.
A microcredential is a short course in a specific area of study, providing students with the opportunity to upskill to suit their immediate work needs or future career goals.
Microcredentials give students an opportunity to be more selective and targeted about acquiring new skills to increase their employability. They can also provide flexibility to students already in the workforce and those managing caring and family responsibilities who may not be able to commit to a full qualification.
Shorter forms of training are becoming increasingly important to equip learners with skills to work in specific fields.
In 2021, the Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed that more than a quarter of Australian businesses were having difficulties finding suitable staff. Nearly 70 per cent of Australian employers surveyed by the World Economic Forum in 2020 were seeking to reskill workers in less than six months.
The pilot will create more opportunities for Australians to get the skills they need to respond to existing or emerging workforce needs.
For further information, visit the Microcredentials Pilot in Higher Education page.