Vocational school

Educational institution of this type in Canton, MI, United States

A vocational school, sometimes also called a trade school, career center, or vocational college[1], is a type of educational institution, which, depending on the country, may refer to secondary or post-secondary education[2] designed to provide vocational education, or technical skills required to perform the tasks of a particular and specific job. In the case of secondary education, these schools differ from academic high schools which usually prepare students who aim to pursue tertiary education, rather than enter directly into the workforce. With regard to post-secondary education, vocational schools are traditionally distinguished from four-year colleges by their focus on job-specific training to students who are typically bound for one of the skilled trades[3], rather than providing academic training for students pursuing careers in a professional discipline. While many schools have largely adhered to this convention, the purely vocational focus of other trade schools began to shift in the 1990s "toward a broader preparation that develops the academic" as well as technical skills of their students.[4]

Australia

Vocational schools were called "technical colleges" in Australia[5], and there were more than 20 schools specializing in vocational educational training (VET)[6]. Only four technical colleges remain, and these are now referred to as "trade colleges". At these colleges, students complete a modified year 12 certificate and commence a school-based apprenticeship in a trade of their choice. There are two trade colleges in Queensland; Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Australian Industry Trade College and one in Adelaide, St. Patrick's Technical College, and another in Perth, Australian Trades College.

In Queensland, students can also undertake VET at private and public high schools instead of studying for their overall position (OP), which is a tertiary entrance score. However these students usually undertake more limited vocational education of one day per week whereas in the trade colleges the training is longer.

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