Rates double for online work-related training
One in two people are now doing their work-related training online, more than double the rate from four years ago, according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
James Mowle, Director of Education and Training Statistics at the ABS, said: "In 2020-21, 4.4 million Australians (23 per cent) aged 15-74 years reported doing work-related training in the past 12 months, and just over half of this group had done their most recent training online."
"The proportion doing their work-related training online rose from 19 per cent in 2016-17 to 55 per cent in 2020-21. Work-related training in a classroom dropped from 69 per cent to 37 per cent in this time."
"The highest rates of online delivery were in Victoria (64 per cent), the Australian Capital Territory (59 per cent) and New South Wales (57 per cent). Many states and territories, particularly Victoria, were impacted by COVID lockdowns over this time, which would have driven a rise in online learning."
The 2020-21 Work-Related Training and Adult Learning survey collected information from July 2020 to June 2021 from people aged 15-74 years on formal study, work-related training, and personal interest learning.
"Two in five Australians had engaged in learning in the past 12 months (42 per cent, or 7.8 million people), with around half of these (3.8 million) studying for a formal qualification", Mr Mowle said.
"Young people aged 20-24 years were the most likely to have done learning for personal interest in the last 12 months (8 per cent compared with 6 per cent of Australians in general)."
The survey also asked about the impact of COVID-19 on people's ability to enrol in study, training or learning.
Of the 5 per cent of Australians who wanted to enrol in formal study in the last 12 months but couldn't (924,000 people), over a quarter (27%) said this was due to COVID-19. Of the 7 per cent who reported barriers to non-formal learning, almost half (45 per cent) said it was due to COVID-19.
More details are available in Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, 2020-21, available for free download from the ABS website.
The survey found that nine hundred and twenty-four thousand Australians reported wanting to enrol in formal study in the past twelve months but could not. Over a quarter of this group reported that this was due to COVID-19. Additionally, one-point-three million people reported barriers to non-formal learning, that is, work-related training or personal interest learning, and forty-five per cent of this group said it was due to COVID-19.
The twenty-twenty twenty twenty-one survey showed an increase in online delivery of work-related training. One in two people who did their work-related training in the past twelve months did their most recent course online, which is more than double the rate from four years ago.
People living in Victoria had the highest rate of online delivery of work-related training, followed by those in the ACT and New South Wales. Many states and territories were impacted by COVID-19 lockdowns over this time, particularly in Victoria, which would have driven a rise in online work-related training.
In twenty-twenty twenty twenty-one, over four million Australians aged between fifteen and seventy-four years reported doing work-related training in the previous twelve months (or twenty-three percent of all people). Just over half of this group did their most recent work-related training online. This was up from nineteen per cent in twenty-sixteen seventeen.
Interestingly the survey also showed that young people aged between twenty and twenty-four years were the most likely age group to have done learning for personal interest in the last twelve months. Also, people with a bachelor degree or above were twice as likely to participate in personal interest learning as those without one.
Almost half of people aged fifteen to seventy-four years who did formal study in the past year said their main reason was to increase their job prospects, while around a third said it was to increase skills in their current job.
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- Work-related training is structured courses that do not form part of a qualification, and are undertaken to obtain, maintain or improve employment related skills and/or improve employment opportunities.