Apprentices and trainees

Apprenticeships and traineeships are a notable feature of Australia's Vocational Education Training (VET) system. Training and employment is combined under a legal contract between the Apprentice (or Trainees), a training provider (TAFE) and an employer.

Apprentices and trainees receive a training wage which increases as they progress. In some cases, group training organisations employ the Apprentice or Trainee and place them with a suitable employer.

Today, apprenticeships and traineeships are available to all age groups, and can be undertaken on a part-time basis (where available) or full-time. Apprenticeships and traineeships can also be undertaken by students in secondary school.

Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships usually last four years and cover traditional trade areas. An apprenticeship is a combination of work and structured training which leads to a nationally recognised trade qualification

The qualifications needed to become a licensed tradesperson are determined by different industries and authorities. Information about licensing in NSW can be found at the Department of Fair Trading

Features of Apprenticeships:

  • Paid employment under an appropriate industrial arrangement
  • A training contract signed by both employer and apprentice and registered with the NSW Department of Education and Training
  • A training program, delivered by a registered training organisation, that leads to a nationally recognised qualification

The Australian Apprenticeships website contains detailed information about traineeships and apprenticeships. The centre can also be contacted on 13 38 73

Download the range of TAFE Western Apprenticeships

Traineeships

Traineeships combine employment and training opportunities in areas not generally covered by apprenticeships.

A traineeship combines work and training in a formal training contract between a Trainee and an employer. The employer agrees to employ the Trainee for the period of the program (usually one to two years) and provides workplace training. During the period of the traineeship ‘off-the-job' training is provided by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) such as TAFE Western Institute.

There are no upper age limits for trainees although some industries have minimum age requirements. For example, the hospitality industry may have age restrictions for the serving of alcohol.

Features of a traineeship:

  • Paid employment for 1 to 3 years under an appropriate industrial arrangement
  • A training contract signed by both employer and apprentice and registered with the NSW Department of Education and Training
  • A training program, delivered by an RTO, that leads to a nationally recognised qualification
  • Financial incentives from the government for both employers and Trainees

Download the range of TAFE Western Traineeships