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The TAFE advantage

With an emphasis on the practical rather than the theoretical, what you learn at TAFE is likely to stay with you forever

We all know that some methods of learning are considerably more effective than others.

Anyone who's ever sat in a vast lecture hall with someone down the front talking at them can probably attest to the low retention rate this method usually results in. Similarly, you're far more likely to remember something that you've actually done yourself or shown someone else how to do.

The famous Learning Pyramid is a great visual representation of this. The upper four levels, (lecture, reading, audio visual and demonstration), are considered passive learning methods, while the lower three levels, (discussion group, practice by doing and teaching others), are considered active learning methods. It's these active methods that result in a much higher percentage of information retention, especially over the long term.

urlIn other words, the more "hands-on" the method of teaching, the more information the student will retain. And this is one of TAFE NSW's principal strengths. With an emphasis on the practical rather than the theoretical, what you learn at TAFE is likely to stay with you forever. It's the advantage of getting your hands dirty.

TAFE's connection to industry is the other major advantage it has over its rivals. This is a two-pronged advantage – strong industry connections mean increased opportunities for students to secure jobs through TAFE's contacts. It also means what the students are being taught is consistent with current industry practices and standards, which are changing all the time. TAFE's industry connections mean that TAFE will always be "in the loop".

TAFE's strong industry connections are many and varied. They can be in the form of specific centres of excellence, such as Riverina Institute's National Environment Centre at Albury, which sets the standard for organic farming in the 21st century. They can be in the form of specialist courses that have been designed with close industry consultation, such as TAFE Western's Certificate II course in Opal Cutting and Polishing at Lightning Ridge Campus. Or they can also be in the form of TAFE teachers who are themselves experts in their fields, such as award-winning chocolatier and pastry chef, Dean Gibson, who passes on the secrets of his trade to his students at Hunter TAFE's Hamilton Campus.

There's no doubt that the TAFE advantage can take you far. So come and join the thousands of people who've already discovered this for themselves.