4 things to consider in choosing a qualifications trail

Some things don’t just happen overnight. 

If you want to live a healthy lifestyle, you need to eat right and exercise consistently.

If you want to have peace of mind when it comes to your finances, then you must carefully budget, save and invest.

And your career is no difference – if you want to achieve the career that you’ve always dreamt of, you’ll need to start by getting qualified.

Just one question: what qualifications trail should you pursue?

The qualifications trail can really get on people’s nerves. Making lifetime decisions in a maze of options isn’t much fun, and it’s not easy.

It’s not always clear what a certificate or diploma can do for you, or what academic options they create.

Often, there’s no clear career path to follow. People can literally talk themselves out of getting a useful qualification like a marketing degree, simply because they don’t have enough information.

Luckily, that’s what we’re here to help with.

Which course in Melbourne is the best choice for your career trajectory? We’re glad you asked…

Making sense of the qualifications trail

Making sense of the qualifications trail starts by becoming aware of what options are open to you.

And that starts by learning what courses are available.

Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Certificates (Business Certificates, Vocational Certificates, etc.)
  • Diplomas (Diploma in Business Administration, Diploma in Business Management)
  • Undergraduate degrees (Bachelor’s Degree)
  • Graduate degrees (Masters Degree)
  • Advanced degrees (MBA, MFA)
  • Doctorates (PhDs)

Each of these different levels has a different course length, and opens different doors for you.

Depending on your long-term goal, it is best to have a clear target in mind – this will help you know what qualifications trail will need to take to get to your end goal.

Today, we’re going to focus on the two types of courses you can study at our Melbourne campus: Certificates and Diplomas.

Certificate qualifications

Certificate courses are available in four levels. Certificates I and II are known to be entry-level courses, while Certificates III and IV tend to be more advanced.

While a Certificate I or II may be enough to secure you an entry level position, if you really want to launch your career, you may consider a Certificate II or IV instead.

In many cases, you’ll be able to start a Certificate III at least without having to complete a Certificate II, allowing you to hit the ground running in your career.

Not to mention, it’ll also give you the ability to move on to…

Diploma Qualifications

The next step up from Certificate-level qualifications, Diploma-level qualifications are the next step for workers who want to take on greater responsibilities within their organisation.

With a focus on teaching higher-level skills that’ll be essential for a management position, this particular qualifications trail is designed for students who want to climb the ladder.

If you want to understand the industry that you wish to be part of and would like to focus on higher-level skills needed for the job, then getting a Diploma can help you achieve your goal.

Diploma qualifications can help you gain valuable knowledge and training not just in your day-to-day role, but in leading and handling staff and team members too.

Just keep in mind that some courses may require you to finish Certificate IV before you can take a Diploma, while others may look at the rest of your work or education background. In a handful of cases however, they’ll automatically give you entry into a Diploma course.

Factors to consider when deciding which qualifications trail is right for you

Certificate or Diploma: which one’s the right choice for you?

Before deciding which course to enrol in, you should first consider these factors – only then can you make the right choice.

Career goals

Before enrolling in any course, you should further evaluate what career goals you have. 

Specifically, ask what level you’re gunning for at the moment – this will impact what qualification trail you should take.

For example, is your goal at the moment just to get an entry-level position, and get comfortable before moving up? Or is it to aim straight for the top?

Which one you choose will impact which course is the right call for you!

Study duration

How long do you plan to dedicate towards completing your course? How much time do you have to study? What does your timeframe look like?

Each of these impact how long which course is right for you!

Certificates, Diplomas and more all have different lengths. You’ll need to factor all of this in when deciding which course you should enrol in.

In particular, be sure to explore whether or not there’s an option to enrol both as a full time or part-time student.

And finally, don’t forget that many of our courses in Melbourne come with a several-weeks long work placement with a real workplace in your dream industry – something else you’ll need to account for!

Course outline

Before taking any course, you should also consider reading and checking the course outline. 

The course outline will give you an idea of what subjects are covered, and what you can expect to master in the process.

Checking the course outline will also help get basic and introductory knowledge on a particular course and when will it end.

In particular, it’ll help you decide whether or not the skills covered will help you get where you want to go, thereby helping you determine which qualification trail is the best way forward for you.

Course fees

And of course, you can’t forget about the importance of fees!

Depending on what type of course you enrol in, your course fees will change. It’s important that this number fits in with your budget.

Another thing you’ll want to look at when choosing a pathway is whether or not you’re eligible for government funding or support.

For example, all of our TAFE-equivalent courses at Academia are eligible for Government-funded courses or Technical and Further Education (TAFE) funding!

Unsure whether or not you’re eligible? Give our friendly course advisors a call – we’re more than happy to help you find out!

Interested in a Certificate or Diploma course? Enrol with Academia today!

So you’ve made a decision in regards to whether a Certificate or Diploma is the right qualification trail for you.

Now the next step: to enrol.

Our friendly course advisors are committed to helping you achieve your career goals, no matter what they are. And that starts early, by helping you make the right decision regarding your qualification trail.

Whether you are a first-time student or a worker who’s upskilling, Academia can help you prepare for many job opportunities. Explore our courses from Hospitality, Aged Care, and Childcare, Commercial Cookery courses and many more!

If you have more questions, don’t hesitate to contact us: