Explaining Terms

Common training terms explained

Apprenticeships combine formal studies with on-the-job training in an employer/employee contract. Your child works with an employer and ispaid while they learn. Mutual consent is required for a contract to be cancelled.

Contracted training providers

Contracted training providers have entered into a contract to deliver government-subsidised training.


External delivery is when a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) offers a course off-campus or by correspondence. This may be an online course or on-site but students will need to check with the individual RTOs.


Flexible delivery is a combination of on-campus and off-campus study but again, students should contact the RTO for details.

Foundation Skills

Foundation skills is a category of training which is designed to provide basic job-ready skills including language, literacy and basic computer skills. This category includes specific courses in Certificates I, II, III and IV.

Government-subsidised training

Government-subsidised training is training undertaken by the student where the government contributes to the cost. This funding is also referred to as the Victorian Training Guarantee (VTG) and can only be offered by contracted training providers. There are eligibility criteria that students need to meet and they can check their eligibility with the VTG eligibility indicator.

Learn Locals

Learn Locals are community-based centres which specialise in Foundation Skills courses. Many Learn Locals are also RTOs or have a formal partnership with a local RTO.

Occupation in demand

The Victorian Government forecasts that these occupations will be needed over the five year period to 2016.


Qualifications are nationally recognised outcomes from training courses. They state the level of training you have successfully completed in a way that employers understand.

Different levels of qualification will prepare you for different levels of jobs.

The qualifications that are used on this website are listed below, with the lowest qualification listed first and the highest qualifications at the end.

  • Certificate I
  • Certificate II
  • Certificate III
  • Certificate IV
  • Diploma
  • Advanced diploma
  • Vocational Graduate Certificate
  • Vocational Graduate Diploma.

You can find more detailed definitions of each of the qualifications on the Department of Education and Training (DET) website.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

RPL involves a formal recognition of the skills and knowledge a person has already achieved through previous studies, work and life experiences. Students may be awarded full or part qualifications on the basis of their assessment and you can find more information about RPL on the DET website.

Registered Training Organisations (RTOs)

RTOs are registered by the Australian or Victorian Government and meet government quality standards. Only RTOs are included in the Victorian Skills Gateway and are also referred to as training providers.

Short courses

Short courses are training programs made up of units of competency or they can even be individual units from qualifications or training packages.

Specialised occupation

These occupations require advanced skills and more training time.


Traineeships combine formal studies with on-the-job training in an employer/employee contract. Your child is paid while they learn but mutual consent is not required for a contract to be cancelled.

Training providers

(see Registered Training Organisations).‚Äč