Study - Pathways - School to TAFE NSW

School to TAFE NSW

If the time has come for you to leave school and you want to continue your study, improve your skills and embark on a fantastic career, TAFE NSW courses and qualifications can help you on your path to success.


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Are you aged under 17?

NSW law requires you to complete school up to Year 10 and then to continue in either education, paid employment, training or a combination of these until you reach the age of 17.

Completing Year 10

By completing Year 10, you will allow yourself greater opportunity for further education, additional training and work experience later in life. Your options include :

In exceptional circumstances, you may able to complete the equivalent of Year 10 with TAFE NSW. An individual assessment will be undertaken to determine which pathway is appropriate for you. The decision will be based on your ability and skills to study in an adult learning environment and your interest in specific vocational qualifications. You may be able to learn a trade or workplace skill through an apprenticeship or traineeship, or take up study for another type of course with TAFE NSW, such as a Certificate II level.

To qualify to complete the equivalent of Year 10 with TAFE NSW, you must:

  • be a minimum age of 15 at the date of your enrolment
  • have written permission from your parent/caregiver, your school principal and your local TAFE NSW Campus Director.

Please speak to your school careers advisor.

TVET courses

If you are looking for a wider range of topics than offered by your school HSC, TAFE NSW delivered Vocational Education and Training (TVET) courses are an excellent choice. TVET courses provide work-related skills, knowledge and industry experience highly regarded by employers. They cover a wide range of industry-related subjects and are ‘dual accredited’ – meaning they count as units of study towards both your HSC and a nationally recognised Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification.

Read more.

Full-time VET qualifications

If you have completed Year 10, you are eligible to study for a nationally recognised Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification at TAFE NSW. We offer an extensive choice of over 1200 courses, with many requiring little or no previous experience or access to the workplace.

Apprenticeships and Traineeships

Apprenticeships and Traineeships combine paid work and structured training. They allow you to learn a trade or workplace skill, and receive a nationally recognised VET qualification.

School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SBAs and SBTs) combine paid work with structured training and school, so you can also gain your HSC.

Read more.

Options for after completing your HSC

If you have completed, or are about to complete, your Higher School Certificate (HSC) then TAFE NSW can offer you:

Credit for your school studies

Some of your school subjects can give you credit towards your TAFE NSW qualification. This means you may be able to decrease the number of units and study time required to complete your course.

School subjects that may be recognised include:

  • TVET studies (i.e. nationally recognised units from Training Packages or Accredited Courses)
  • HSC subjects developed by the NSW Education Standards Authority. These subjects include a range of industry areas and you will need to show that you have successfully completed them in the last five years. You will also need to discuss with TAFE NSW staff what credit they may grant towards your desired course.

You may also be able to use your previous study and other evidence of your knowledge, skills and experience to gain Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for credit towards your course. With RPL your formal and informal learning are individually assessed to see whether you can meet competency standards.

Read more.

Courses to match your skills

Although TAFE NSW course selection is not based on an Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR), different courses at TAFE NSW have different entry requirements. Many have few or no prerequisites, while others require previous training or qualifications.

Explore our courses.

Get help choosing the right study option for you

Whether you’re looking for hands-on, structured, training or the ability to learn in your own place at your own pace, TAFE NSW is here to help you choose the right study option. We know every student has unique needs, that’s why we help combine different learning models and tailor the delivery to suit you.

Our friendly Customer Service Centre support staff can help you with any questions you might have about our on-campus, online or distance study options.