With so much talk about government funded courses and our free TAFE equivalent courses online, it’s little wonder that we get a lot of questions asking for more details!
That’s a large part of why we run this blog – to give future students like you a good idea of what to expect before they enrol!
We’re here to answer all your questions – and that includes questions about the Victorian government’s Skills First funding and subsidised or free online TAFE/vocational courses.
Today’s focus: the question of how many government funded courses you can apply for.
How many government funded courses can I do?
Before we answer this, we need to explain what types of government funded courses are available, as well as the eligibility criteria for each of these schemes!
And what better place to start than with Victoria’s Skills First funding?
Under this scheme, students are only allowed to apply for a subsidised or free TAFE equivalent course if they meet the following criteria:
- Hold Australian or New Zealand citizenship, or Australian permanent residency
- Under 20 years of age as of 1/1/2020, OR
- Applying for a higher qualification than you already have (if over 20)
In addition to subsidising TAFE equivalent courses, under Skills First funding, many courses in certain high-demand industries have their tuition fees completely subsidised, effectively making them free.
Now for the big question: how many courses can you do?
Under Skills First funding, you can complete more than subsidised courses – specifically, two government funded courses.
However, there are a couple of conditions.
Can both of these courses be studied at the same time?
A lot of people believe that Skills First funding only entitles you to a single government funded TAFE/vocational course – fortunately, this isn’t the case!
Under this scheme, applicants aren’t able to start more than 2 subsidised courses a year.
Essentially, you have two annual “chances” that you can use – this also includes courses you start but don’t complete (more on that later).
Say for example you start a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery, before deciding that your real passion lies in desserts and pastries.
While you can also apply for government funding for your Certificate III in Patisserie, the earlier course means you won’t be able to apply for another for the year.
What about courses you drop out of?
Maybe you start one government funded course, only to realise that it isn’t really your thing:
- Work itself isn’t really what you wanted
- Your career aspirations have changed
- You’ve fallen in love with a completely different field
There’s nothing wrong with changing your mind – many people decide that another direction is best for them.
In fact, career changes are one of the most common reasons that people enrol in our TAFE equivalent courses to begin with!
Of course, that raises the question of what happens to your government funding.
When we said that students are eligible to apply for two government funded courses in a year, that includes false starts or courses that you drop out of.
Luckily for you, your second course will also be eligible for government funding – however, since you’ve used up both “chances” so to speak, if you decide to change direction for a third time, you won’t be able to claim government funding until the following year.
And if you’ve already claimed your tuition waiver, you’re out of luck – this is single use, and it kicks in from the moment of enrolment.
While you may still qualify for subsidies if you change your mind, you won’t qualify for free TAFE if you change your mind, even if you’re changing into another one of the selected courses.
How your free TAFE equivalent course impacts other government funding schemes
While Skills First funding is the most high-profile scheme at the moment, it isn’t the only one – there are a range of different schemes designed to improve access to training for a wide range of different people.
For example, asylum seekers are eligible for subsidised or free TAFE equivalent courses under the Asylum Seeker VET Program.
From the government’s standpoint, any subsidised or free courses completed under Skills First funding are treated the same as any other courses you may have completed.
And just like any other qualification, they may impact your eligibility criteria for future government funding schemes.
As part of our mission to ensure that you end up in the perfect career path, our friendly course advisors can help you figure out how applying for Skills First funding (or any completing other government funded courses online) could impact eligibility for other programs.
Complete a government funded course online with Academia!
With a range of different courses covering a range of different industries from aged care, to childcare, to commercial cookery and patisserie as well as more, we’ve got just the course to help you upskill.
Each of our courses can be taught online, minimising the amount of time you need to spend on-campus and helping you stay safe.
And unlike a lot of other courses, our online learning system is set up in a way that replicates the in-person experience as much as possible, with:
- Virtual whiteboards that let you interact with content
- Group classes that replicate the classroom experience
- Continuing commitment to small class sizes and good instructor-student ratios
- Private messaging and video chat for collaboration
- An instructor that you reach out to for guidance at any time
Have questions about how our system works? Want to learn more about one of our courses? Our friendly course advisors are here to answer all of your questions.
Give us a call today:
Alternatively, fill in this form and we’ll get in touch with you online.