Researchers are evaluating the impact of changes in compliance and immigration policy on the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector.
Professor Prem Chhetri is leading a team of researchers from RMIT University's School of Business IT and Logistics to identify the impact of changes in the "skills in demand" policy on the ability of education providers to design, develop and deliver quality education.
The team has received $10,000 in funding from the Australian Learning Training and Education Centre (ALTEC).
Professor Chhetri said the study would advance understanding of the impact of immigration policies on the operation of Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) in Australia and how it affected the overseas student market.
"It will also assist RTOs to design, develop and deliver market-focused and demand-driven quality education," he said.
Professor Geoffrey Stokes, Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research) in the College of Business, said the findings of the study would offer both theoretical and practical contributions to the VET industry.
"From the theoretical point of view, the findings will contribute to the body of knowledge in the field of education policies and vocational education and training," he said.
"From the practical perspective, the outcomes of the study will benefit the Australian regulatory agencies that are responsible for the change of immigration policies and compliance system."
The transitioning of the Australian VET sector into a market-based system in recent years has been turbulent.
Reforms have focused on re-structuring of education systems to operate like business enterprises, with changes designed to inject innovation and efficiency into the state-run system.
CEO of ALTEC, Pankaj Goel, said the project would generate evidence on whether the removal of barriers to entry for private operators had increased competition, improved service and product quality, and lowered costs for students.
For RMIT the global VET landscape presents many opportunities, following recent legislative changes in relation to universities that offer both TAFE and higher education programs.
These institutions, which include RMIT, are no longer being named as TAFE but have this year transitioned to Vocational Education.
Vocational Education at RMIT delivers high quality vocational outcomes informed by industry and professional practice and complements the tertiary nature of RMIT, as a global university of technology and design.
The University recently launched the "Vocational Education Plan 2014-18 - Committed to our strengths, extending our reach", which focuses on pedagogy informed by industry and practice, global orientation, a tertiary model and financial sustainability.
The plan will enhance RMIT's global reach and engagement in a complex and changing environment, and help to deliver innovative educational solutions to meet the needs of students, industry and urban communities.