7 December 2021

As strong supporters of reforms to encourage life-long learning and upskilling, the Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN) warmly welcomes the seven key recommendations in the Bean Dawkins Review as well as Minister Robert’s announcements of funding and regulatory changes associated with the delivery of short courses and microcredentials.

Funding for microcredentials and rollover funding for short courses will allow universities to provide the skills for work for thousands of Australians. ATN enthusiastically took up the chance to develop and deliver short courses in national priority areas announced by Minister Tehan back in 2020.

By extending support for universities to deliver short courses in national priority areas into 2022 and encouraging universities and industry to develop new microcredentials for domestic and international students, the Morrison Government is sending a clear signal for universities and industry to work together to help workers reskill, upskill or start a new chapter in their professional lives.

ATN has had great success in meeting student demand in short courses linked to key industries. We offered 55 short courses in 2020 and over 180 short courses in 2021, many in emerging, strategic national priority areas such as data analytics, cyber security, nursing, teacher education and psychology.

Given our success in the delivery of short courses, we will seek assurance from the Government for new and recurrent funding so that we can continue to deliver skilling opportunities for thousands of Australians into the future.

ATN is passionate about working with industry to develop and deliver short courses and microcredentials that benefit both individual workers and the wider economy. These goals are in step with the Bean Dawkins Review’s recommendation to scale up industry-focused skilling and upskilling opportunities within the Australian tertiary education system.


Quotes attributable to ATN Executive Director, Mr Luke Sheehy:

“The Beans Dawkins Review is an excellent roadmap for reform and ATN is enthusiastic about seeing these recommendations come to fruition.

“ATN are strong supporters of short courses as part of our higher education system. Our universities were quick to develop an entirely new suite of courses that have assisted thousands of Australians through the uncertain days of the pandemic.

“With Minister Robert’s announcement and the assurance of continued support for these short courses into 2022, ATN will be better placed to leverage our relationships with industry to develop the most job-relevant, industry-engaged courses that reskill and upskill workers effectively.

“Given ATN members’ success in delivering short courses in key priority areas, we look forward to working with Government to embed these valuable courses for years to come.”