The Dromana College, VCE Vocational Major is a 2 year Senior Certificate, which provides an applied learning environment for students who do not want to go to university and who do not need an ATAR straight after year 12.

It is for students who would prefer a more applied pathway.  The VCE Vocational Major pathway allows students to begin their career while completing their formal Secondary schooling.

The Vocational Major Certificate consists:


  • Monday, Tuesday and Thursday

Certificate Course (II or III)

  • Wednesday*

Structured Workplace Learning (SWL)

  • Friday*

The VCE Vocational Major Certificate is a blend of:

  • School – Literacy, Numeracy, Work Related Skills, Personal Development Skills, and a VCE elective
  • Certificate level qualification (Certificate II or III)
  • Structured Workplace Learning

It is designed to start students on their chosen pathway while completing their formal schooling.
In many cases VCE Vocational Major students can start an Australian Apprenticeship or Traineeship (SBAT) completing real world qualifications, gaining real world work skills on the job (and getting paid), while completing their formal secondary education and receiving the VCE Vocational Major Certificate.

Certificate (II or III) component:
There are three Certificate streams: SBAT and VET

SBAT: School Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship
VET: Vocational Education and Training

VCE Vocational Major Certificate Electives


The student knows of/or finds an employer who is prepared to sign them up as an Australian Apprentice while they are completing their formal schooling.

SBATs are ideal for students who know where their future career lies and is a career that is an Australian Apprenticeship qualification. Apprenticeships are generally 4yrs and are found in industries such as (but not limited to):

  • Building
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical
  • Hairdressing
  • Chef
  • Automotive Mechanic
  • Tiler
  • Brick Layer
  • Sign Writer

Students undertaking an SBAT (Apprenticeship) undergo a legal ‘sign up’ process resulting in a Training Plan which includes: TAFE/Trade school and weekly structured paid workplacement with their employer and start completing first year apprenticeship units in their ‘real world’ Certificate III  qualification, undertaken alongside their Senior school secondary education.

A typical SBAT (Apprenticeship) looks like:

  • School Monday, Tuesday and Thursday to continue building Literacy and Numeracy skills and start building Work Related Skills (WRS) and Personal Development Skills (PDS).
  • TAFE one day a week undertaking Industry Specific Certificate  III qualifications
  • Industry specific workplacement  one day a week. (Getting paid First Year apprenticeship wages and completing First Year apprenticeship units while you are at school.

A student will continue their SBAT throughout the Senior school years (10, 11 and 12) and by the end of Year 12 the student may potentially* have reduced their First Year Apprenticeship by up to 3 months at school, instead of starting their Apprenticeship after Year 12.

Once the student has successfully completed Year 12 the student simply continues with the Apprenticeship full time.

(*Time reduced is dependent on SBAT start date)


Similar to an SBAT Apprenticeship however the Certificate training is completed in one year.

  • 3 days school
  • 1 day Certificate training at TAFE or similar in a Certificate of their choice
  • 1 day paid work (approx $72 per work day)

Traineeships are generally completed in 12 months, unlike Apprenticeships which take up to 4yrs to complete.

Traineeships can be offered by any industry  (where Apprenticeship is not required) and are available to students from 15yrs.

Successful completion of a Traineeship give students ‘real world’ Certificate III qualification, set in real world industry work spaces, with mandatory one day a week workplacement, and one day a week TAFE.

Some SBAT traineeships offer Certificates that are prerequisite qualifications for higher level, post Year 12  TAFE Certificates meaning they can be used as a Certificate pathway to undertake a higher qualification upon completion of Year 12 for  Certificates lead directly to employment.

School Based Traineeships available in either Year 11 or 12

  • Allied Health (Real world qualification for Aged Care)
  • Education Support (Certification for Classroom Support Aide)
  • Early Childhood Education (Prerequisite Certificate for Diploma Early Childhood > Bachelor Primary Education)
  • Fitness (Prerequisite Certificate for Certificate IV Fitness)
  • Information Technology (Real world qualification for ICT industry)
  • Warehousing and Logistics Reece Plumbing
  • Retail Reece Plumbing

Students are only able to undertake ONE traineeship in either Year 11 or 12. (Traineeships are Federally funded programs and can only be accessed once, however students are able to undertake post school traineeships)

SBATs, either Apprenticeship or Traineeship are suitable for students who know or have a very good idea of their pathway.


Student’s school program is the same as SBAT:

  • 3 days school
  • 1 day Certificate training
  • 1 day Structured Workplace Learning (SWL)

The VETDSS program has a range of Certificate II/III* level qualifications – very limited number are pre-apprenticeship courses completed over two years (10 and 11 or 11 and 12)

However VETDSS certificate courses are taster qualifications for students who may still be unsure about their pathway and want to ‘experience’ entry level Certificate qualifications.

The suite of VETDSS offerings is vast.

  • Acting
  • Active Volunteering
  • Agriculture
  • Animal studies
  • Applied Fashion
  • Automotive
  • Aquatics
  • Building and Construction
  • Business
  • CISCO I.T. Security
  • Community Services
  • Computer Assembly and Repair
  • Construction Pathways
  • Dance
  • Design Fundamental Graphics
  • Design Fundamental Photography
  • Digital Arts
  • Drone Pilot
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Electrotechnology
  • Equine
  • Hair, Beauty and Wellness
  • Health Services Assistance
  • Horticulture
  • Hospitality
  • Interior Design
  • IT Cyber Security
  • IT Games Design
  • Kitchen Operations
  • Music Performance
  • Music Production (sound)
  • Parks and Gardens
  • Plumbing
  • Screen and Media
  • Sport and Recreation

Important information about VETDSS

  • Most VETis Certificates take two years to complete the Certificate.
  • Limited number of VETDSS can be completed in a school year – check with pathways office.
  • Very limited number of VETDSS are NOT completed after 2 years – check with pathways office.
  • Students are NOT automatically enrolled in 2nd year of Certificate – check with pathways office
  • VETDSS /SBAT is COMPULSORY in Year 11.
  • If you DO NOT successfully complete ALL units of your Certificate (units are delivered weekly at TAFE) you will not successfully pass Year 11
  • VETDSS classes CANNOT be ‘made up’
  • At least 80% attendance is compulsory. More than 6 absences over the year will result in unsuccessful completion of Year 11

A student can enrol in a different VETDSS in Year 12 if they wish to try something new.

  • VETDSS certificates run for the full school year.
  • If a student decides they don’t like it once they’ve started, they cannot leave the Certificate or move to another one. They must continue with their chosen VETDSS until the end of the year or they risk not completing Year 11.

If a student decides not to continue to the second year and has successfully completed the full first year, they will receive a Statement of Attainment for units completed, NOT the Certificate.

The statement of attainment will contribute towards the successful completion of  VETDSS for the Vocational Major (Certificate strand only), students must complete all other requirements: school and Structured Workplace Learning.

Enrolment timelines for VETDSS Certificates are VERY STRICT.

  • Part one of the enrolment process is completion of online Dromana College google document.
  • Parents and students (school email) will be emailed this google doc enrolment form around September/October (2023) from our VETDSS coordinator Leigh Moreton.
  • Leigh will enter the details you have supplied into the Chisholm portal
  • You will then receive an email from Chisholm with the final enrolment process.
  • YOU MUST complete this final Chisholm enrolment process or you WILL NOT secure a place in the VETDSS

DO NOT ignore the email from Chisholm.

Places in VETDSS are NOT guaranteed and are filled on a first come, first in basis as you are competing for places against all the secondary colleges on the Peninsula, Frankston and surrounds.

If you do not hear anything about VET by October (2023) from the College (or parents, from your child) THEY ARE LIKELY NOT ENROLLED.

Please contact Leigh to organise enrolment, 59 87 2805 or

SWL: Structured Workplace Learning

The SWL exposes students to industry specific work placement at a workplace chosen by them.

SWL is undertaken one day a week during the school year.

Ideally SWL should match your VETDSS ie: VETDSS Certificate II Salon Assistant , your SWL should ideally be with Hairdresser, so that what you are learning at TAFE you are able to put into practice in your weekly SWL.

SWL is driven by the employer – they decide how how long you have the SWL placement for – a term, a month, a year, a day.

SWL minimum payment is $5 per day unless employer decides to pay you more. Not for profit businesses ie: schools, charities do not have to pay anything.

There is legal, OH&S documentation that must be completed before commencement of  SWL

  • SWL (Ministerial Order 55) form MUST be completed by all parties before student can attend Structured Workplace Learning.
  • Additional Industry documentation may also be required.
  • Working with Children check – for Childcare, Primary or Secondary School but other employers may require it also.
  • Construction Induction Card (CIC) a union requirement for any student working on a building site.

See the Pathways office Term III for a full list of VETDSS available in 2024