Free TAFE for priority courses

Changes to Free TAFE

Free TAFE numbers are now capped with limited places and fee support available in certain courses. Please enquire with the university to apply and learn more about funding availability and eligibility.

What is Free TAFE?

Free TAFE gives more Victorians the chance to study at TAFE. From January 1 2019, eligible students do not pay tuition fees for 40 non-apprenticeship courses, state-wide. A further 20 government-subsidised pre-apprenticeships are also free.

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Free TAFE eligibility

If you're an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen, you are eligible if you meet these criteria:

  • You are under 20 (regardless of any other qualifications), or
  • You are 20 or older and enrolling in a course that is a higher qualification than you've previously attained.*

* The requirement for enrolling in a course that is a higher qualification than one you have already completed is currently being waived for all vocational education programs at RMIT University. This means that more students will be eligible for Free TAFE in these priority courses at RMIT.

Find out more about eligibility for government subsidised places.

Building

Trades

Health

Education

Accounting

Community services

Frequently asked questions

Free TAFE for Priority Courses is a Victorian Government program that will pay your tuition fees so that you can study in selected courses at TAFE.

You might be eligible if you are living in Victoria and are under 20 years of age, or if you are enrolling in a course at a higher level than any you have completed before, but you can check at any TAFE, or contact the Training and TAFE line on 131 823.

  • The tuition-free priority course list includes 40 non-apprenticeship courses and 20 courses that provide pathways to apprenticeships (also known as ‘pre-apprenticeships’).
  • The tuition-free priority courses lead to occupations in industries where there are likely to be more jobs. Some of them lead to work in important areas like preventing family violence, rolling out the National Disability Insurance Scheme in Victoria and delivering our major infrastructure projects.
  • Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping
  • Diploma of Accounting
  • Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs
  • Advanced Diploma of Accounting
  • Certificate IV in Ageing Support
  • Certificate II in Agriculture
  • Certificate III in Agriculture
  • Certificate IV in Agriculture
  • Certificate III in Agriculture (Dairy Production)
  • Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance
  • Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance
  • Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building)
  • Diploma of Building and Construction (Building)
  • Advanced Diploma of Building Surveying
  • Certificate IV in Child, Youth and Family Intervention
  • Certificate III in Civil Construction
  • Certificate IV in Civil Construction Supervision
  • Certificate III in Commercial Cookery
  • Certificate III in Community Services
  • Certificate IV in Community Services
  • Diploma of Community Services
  • Certificate III in Concreting
  • Certificate III in Construction Waterproofing
  • Certificate IV in Cyber Security
  • Certificate III in Dental Assisting
  • Certificate IV in Dental Assisting
  • Certificate IV in Disability
  • Certificate III in Education Support
  • Certificate IV in Education Support
  • Certificate IV in Engineering
  • Certificate III in Horticulture
  • Certificate III in Hospitality
  • Certificate III in Individual Support
  • Diploma of Justice
  • Certificate IV in Mental Health
  • Diploma of Nursing
  • Certificate IV in Plumbing and Service
  • Certificate III in Rail Infrastructure
  • Certificate III in Tourism
  • Certificate IV in Youth Work
  • Certificate II in Automotive Air Conditioning Technology
  • Certificate II in Automotive Body Repair Technology
  • Certificate II in Automotive Servicing Technology
  • Certificate II in Automotive Vocational Preparation
  • Certificate II in Baking
  • Certificate II in Building and Construction Pre-apprenticeship
  • Certificate II in Construction Pathways
  • Certificate II in Electrotechnology Studies (Pre-vocational)
  • Certificate II in Electrotechnology (Career Start)
  • Certificate II in Engineering Pathways
  • Certificate II in Engineering Studies
  • Certificate II in Furniture Making
  • Certificate II in Glass and Glazing
  • Certificate II in Horticulture
  • Certificate II in Meat Processing (Food Services)
  • Certificate II in Plumbing (Pre-apprenticeship)
  • Certificate II in Printing and Graphic Arts (General)
  • Certificate II in Production Nursery
  • Certificate II in Salon Assistant
  • Certificate II in Signage and Graphics
  • You can do tuition free priority courses at Victorian TAFE institutes, including universities that offer TAFE courses.
  • To find a course near you, contact the Training and TAFE line on 131 823.
  • If you are eligible, Free TAFE for Priority Courses pays the tuition fees for your whole course.
  • TAFEs may charge you other fees, such as student services fees or materials fees that you will have to cover yourself.
  • Only the courses on the tuition-free priority course list are tuition fee-free, but there are around 1,000 courses you can do at TAFEs and other training providers that are Victorian Government-subsidised.
  • While some tuition fees may apply for Victorian Government-subsidised training, you may be eligible for a concession.
  • Check the Victorian Skills Gateway to find Victorian Government-subsidised courses near you (Search the internet for ‘Victorian Skills Gateway’) and your training provider can check if you are eligible for a concession.
  • Victorian Government-subsidised training is when the Government pays a large portion of the cost of your training if you are eligible, and you make a contribution, by paying fees. It's been around for a while and there are around 1,000 subsidised courses you can do at TAFEs and other training providers.
  • The courses on the tuition free priority course list are subsidised, but the Government will also pay your tuition fees if you’re eligible. It starts next year.

No. Free TAFE for Priority Courses only applies to eligible students who enrol in a tuition free priority course that commences after 1 January 2019.

  • If you are currently doing training and you are happy with your course, you should complete it, especially if you have a Victorian Government subsidised place. There are limits on the number of times you can commence courses and stay eligible for subsidised training, so dropping out and restarting could mean you become ineligible.
  • If you are thinking of dropping out for any reason, talk to the careers guidance staff at your training provider, or visit a Skills and Jobs Centre near you. Skills and Job Centres are based in TAFEs across Victoria and provide expert advice on training and employment opportunities. (Search the internet for ‘Victorian Skills and Job Centres’).
  • The tuition-free priority courses are in areas where there are likely to be more jobs in the future.
  • When you finish your course, a Skills and Jobs Centre can help you search for a job and support you to prepare your résumé. (Search the internet for ‘Victorian Skills and Job Centres’.)
  • Free TAFE for Priority Courses will pay your tuition fees for one course.
  • Once you have enrolled in a tuition-free priority course, you can’t get a tuition-free place again, even if you don’t finish your first tuition-free priority course.
  • You need to make a careful choice, so talk to your local TAFE or Skills and Jobs Centre if you are unsure (Search the internet for ‘Victorian Skills and Job Centres’).
  • For the purpose of determining whether you are eligible for further Victorian Government-subsidised training, courses undertaken as Free TAFE for Priority Courses are treated the same way as any other course you have undertaken.
  • Your TAFE will be able to tell you about whether you will have future Victorian Government-subsidised training options.

Contact the Training and TAFE line on 131 823 or visit www.tafe.vic.gov.au.

Free TAFE for Priority Courses is a Victorian Government program that will pay your tuition fees so that you can study in selected courses at TAFE.

  • If you are continuing in the same course at another TAFE or dual sector provider such as RMIT, the course would continue to be free at the second provider
  • If you are continuing the course but at a non-TAFE, you would be subject to normal tuition fee arrangements at that non-TAFE provider
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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nations on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.

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