| Executive Director Comment

Towards a Tertiary Future discussion paper

The Innovative Research Universities (IRU) has published its contribution to the tertiary debate in a discussion paper titled ‘Towards a Tertiary Future’ (published 21 November 2018).

Read the full IRU discussion paper: Towards a Tertiary Future

In it, the IRU makes the case for a coherent tertiary education system that ensures each person has the opportunity and incentive to get the vocational and higher education qualifications, skills and knowledge to which they aspire.

Creating such a system should be a priority for the Australian Government following the 2019 election.

The focus should be:

  • all post school education and training, with an effective relationship to schooling
  • people, and the skills and knowledge they need, not providers. Providers are the tool.

To create an effective system, we need to understand the changed role of tertiary education:

  • The economic and social reality is that nearly everyone now needs a post school qualification.
  • Educating all to their need should not hold back learning of those most naturally suited to academic learning.
  • Higher education is for all, not just the best and brightest.
  • We have moved from the advantage of having a degree or trade to the disadvantage of not having either.
  • There will be a greater overlap of earnings between those with higher education qualifications and those with VET qualifications.