Department of Family and Community Services
A woman working on some technical equipment.

5.1 VET graduates working in their field of study

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Vocational education and training (VET) graduates working in the field for which they are qualified

Current position

25 percent of NSW women aged 20 to 64 who hold a VET qualification are working in the same occupation as their training. This compares with 34 percent of men in the same age group.

Gender gap

  • Amongst VET graduates aged 20 to 64 years, women are 9 percentage points less likely than men to work in a field for which their training was intended.
The direction of
change over time
There has been little change for either women or men since 2009. Figures for women ranged between 25 and 26 percent and for men ranged from 32 to 39 percent. Whilst both men and women have improved slightly since 2011 (25 to 26 percent for women and 32 to 34 percent for men) the improvement for men has been greater.

The differences are greatest among women and men under 35 years (see Figure 3.13). For women aged 20 to 34 the gender gap is 16 percentage points whereas for women aged 35 to 64 the gender gap is 0.4 percentage points.

Further analysis is required to determine why there is such a large gap between men and women under the age of 35. Reasons for this may include child bearing, further study or a change in career path.

Same occupation in this data is determined by NCVER at the ANZSCO four-digit or unit group level, and is derived from matching the student’s reported occupation six months after training has completed with the intended occupation for the training course in question (as described in Training Packages). Whilst the Student Outcomes Survey goes back to 2005, data on occupation after training is available from 2009. The data is reported here for the age group 20 to 64 years.

Year collected: 2011.
Data source: VOCSTATS, Student Outcomes Survey 2011. More information is available at

Figure 3.14 People working in their field of study, by age, NSW, 2011Fig 3.14

Note: The figure shows the percentage of female and male VET graduates working in the same occupation as the intended occupation for the training course they undertook, six months after completing the course.

Population: VET graduates aged 20 to 64.

Source: VOCSTATS NCVER Student Outcomes Survey 2011.