425 Belgrave - Gembrook Road, Emerald, VIC 3782

(03) 5968 5388

Emerald Secondary College
Access to Excellence


Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning and Vocational Education and Training

Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL)

The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) is an alternative certificate offered at Year 11 and 12. It is designed to increase pathways for senior students. It provides an applied learning approach with competency based assessment. The workload is as follows:

Year 10

  • School – 5 days per week
  • Onsite VET studies
  • VCAL subject studies as part of elective choices

Year 11

  • School - 3 days per week
  • Work - 1 day per week
  • Training - 1 day per week

Year 12

  • School - 2 days per week
  • Work - 2 days per week
  • Training - 1 day per week

At Emerald Secondary College, we offer Foundation, Intermediate and Senior VCAL providing flexibility in Years 10 - 12. Each student will be enrolled in a combination of curriculum components as part of a VCAL Learning Program. A VCAL Learning Program must include curriculum components from each of the five VCAL curriculum strands. Students are required to develop a VCAL program from the following subjects:

Vocational Education and Training (VET)

The VCAA has approved a number of programs, which enable students to include a full Vocational Education Training (VET) course as part of their VCE/VCAL. On successful completion of the program, students receive separate VCE and VET qualifications. Students who successfully complete VET courses may receive a Study Score that can be used in determining their ATAR. Students may be required to spend one day per week in Work Placement or a TAFE Institute and some school holiday time may be required also. Depending on school timetable constraints, students may miss a few classes of other subjects on a regular basis. This work will also be required to be done.

Some of the following VET courses are evidence of what is available:

  • Hospitality
  • Multimedia
  • Shared Electro-technology
  • Music
  • Sport and Recreation - Fitness
  • Building and Construction
  • Community Service
  • Equine Studies
  • Information Technology

All VET programs will incur a cost between $200.00 and $1500.00 depending on the program. Costs are calculated on contact hours and equipment requirements. Prior to enrolment, students will be asked to commit half of the costs of the course with the final balance to be paid prior to the start of the year. Funding changes from year to year and it is impossible to calculate exact costs.

Australian School Based Apprenticeship Program

In this program students receive one day of paid, on-the-job training with an employer, perhaps one day of training at a TAFE and the other days at school completing their VCAL. There may be additional training at weekends or during school holidays. The New Apprenticeship will gain the student credit towards their VCAL or VCE.

There are a number of different industries in which a student can apply to attempt an Australian School Based Apprenticeship Program (ASBA). One limitation is the availability of employers to take on the New Apprentice. Should a student wish to participate in this program, seeking a suitable, willing employer would be a positive step. The College enlists the services of a Registered Training Organisation in order to help provide employers for those students interested in an ASBA.

Current ASBAs are:

  • Hospitality
  • Retail
  • Horticulture
  • Engineering
  • Electrical
  • Building and Construction
  • Office Administration
  • Hairdressing
  • Cabinet Making
  • Childrens' Services
  • I.T
  • Sport & Recreation