Expanding our Leadership

We are delighted that three well-regarded leaders of professional and educational organisations have joined us in taking our organisation forward to be even more widely recognised and influential as the Unifying Alliance of Professional Associations in Australia.

We welcome Julie Strous BVS GAICD (Executive Director – Australasian Veterinary Boards Council), Lynette Harris M.Ed (Director – Navitas Professions) and Mark Lowy M.Sc MPM MBA (Imm. Past President – Project Management Institute, Melbourne) who join Dr Nick Tate FACS CP CEng (Chair – ACoP Strategic Advisory Council) and Dr Ash Jones (Head – ACoP Education & Accreditation Portfolio) as co-opted members of our leadership team, separate to our elected Directors.

They will help steer the Australian Council of Professions to achieve the projects and activities that our Member organisations have requested us to undertake:

Welcome Julie, Lynette and Mark!

International Womens Day 2020

As in previous years, the Australian Council of Professions celebrates the International Day of Women by acknowledging, promoting and celebrating the vital position and contribution of female professionals in the professions and professionalism.

We believe that equality is not only a women’s issue, but is essential for economies professions, businesses, economies and communities to thrive.

In this context we note the “8 Imperatives for Gender Equity in the Workplace” research report recently published by the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM):

Through their research, AIPM have identified eight imperatives that Australian governments, society, professionals and industry need to urgently address to speed up the journey to gender equality in the workplace to the benefit of all Australians.

AIPM’s CEO Elizabeth Foley said that childcare reforms introduced in 2018 by the federal government presented significant disincentives to women from professional backgrounds returning to work after having children.
Under the current settings, if combined family income exceeds the set upper limits by just one dollar, the amount provided by the Child Care Subsidy Scheme plunges by at least half and in some circumstances by more than half,” she says.

ACoP CEO Lee Tonitto says “Our Diversity and Inclusion Portfolio Committee helps identify and develop best practice policies for broad-based diversity and inclusivity (e.g. gender, LGBTI, race, ethnicity, migration status, age, disability, etc.) of professionals, their professions and professional associations.

The Australian Council of Professions (ACoP) believes that a gender-equal world can be healthier, wealthier and more harmonious – so let’s make it happen!

Education & Employability

This initiative seeks to explore the future of learning and employability to support a fair, equitable, socially cohesive and prosperous Australia. Led by the Australian Council of Professions, it brings together educators, the professions and industry in a collaborative conversation of thought leaders from various vantage points to explore and draft a Statement of Principles.
The Statement could inform thinking and policy about how Australia’s education ecosystem needs to adapt to accommodate industry needs into the future, promote social cohesion and enable citizens across the lifespan – regardless of their place or starting point – to find and create work.

Next Steps

As a result of the current coronavirus situation, our next face-to-face working session planned for April 2020 cannot proceed. We are now looking at other ways to hold this session.


Satellite Discussion Session

Our November 2019 Round-Table had brought together thought leaders who drafted a Statement of Intent for a National Strategy to evolve Australia’s education ecosystem to accommodate industry needs, promote social cohesion and enable citizens across the lifespan – regardless of their place or starting point. A follow-on session titled “Towards a National Strategy for Education and Employability for Australia’s Industry 4.0” (download Programme here) at the National Library of Australia in Canberra on 25 February 2020 was by all accounts highly successful with ~150 registrations.

Convened by our President Klaus Veil, the broad range of speakers elicited very interesting discussions and the session participants appreciated being able to “look at the topic through various prisms“. The resolution was that we were asked to keep the groundswell and momentum going!

We thank the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) for their generous partnership and support of this event.


Stakeholder Consultation Sessions

The objective of these four sessions was to disseminate the themes discussed at the November 2019 Round-Table and to unpack these themes for those who were not able to attend as well as to garner interest and views from the broader community.
Canberra: 4 Feb. 2020 (1:30 – 4:30pm)
Melbourne: 11 Feb. 2020 (2:00 – 5:00pm)
Sydney: 18 Feb. 2020 (1:30 – 4:30pm)
Perth: tbc
The consultation sessions were seen by the participants as very useful with the quality of the contributions and discourse as well as senior buy-in of the 46 participants most impressive. The unanimous view is that “Education and Employability” is a big challenge for the professions and professionals and no other organisation or govt currently has a policy for this.

We thank Engineers Australia, DeakinCo and Navitas for their generous support of these events.


1st Education & Employability Round-Table

The inaugural Round-Table on Education and Employability was held on 19 November 2019 in Sydney. Invited were higher education providers, the professions, industry, govt. regulators and related organisations. The initial focus was on exploring a common goal of the initiative in the context of the future of education, employability and work in Australia’s Industry 4.0. Inspired work by the Round-Table participants ably facilitated by Prof Beverley Oliver and Prof Sally Kift resulted in this Joint Statement of Intent:

“We in Education and Industry undertake to work together to create and drive an Integrated Continuous Learning Strategy to achieve a fair and prosperous Australia.”

The next steps that were agreed are to promulgate and validate this Joint Statement more widely. Stakeholder Consultation Sessions in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra and Perth are envisaged.

We thank Navitas for their generous support of this event.

Call 1300 664 587 or contact CEO@Professions.org.au to find out more!

History

This initiative originated in 2018 in discussions of concerned educators, professionals and industry representatives involved with Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) regarding effectively implementing approaches and strategies that integrate theory with the practice of work within a purposefully designed curriculum. The overall aim was to improve the employability of graduates by giving them practical experience which is directly related to the courses they study.

In 2015, a National Strategy on Work-Integrated Learning had been published to increase opportunities to participate in WIL, recognising the benefits to students, employers, universities and the economy.

It was felt that it would be useful to bring together national thought leaders from industry, professional associations and the higher education sector to identify current and future workplace needs.  This conversation might be able to provide industry leadership and inform policy and regulatory settings to ensure the quality delivery of education to “Industry 4.o”.


Relevant Background Documents

Future Skills Report (AlphaBeta)
Australian Jobs 2019 (Dept. of Jobs and Small Business)
Skilling – A National Imperative (AIG)
Making Micro-Credentials Work (DeakinCo)
The Best Chance for All – Student Equity 2030 (NCSEHE)
AQF Review 2019 – Final Report (Dept. of Education)
Accelerating Skills Acquisition in the Age of Intelligent Technologies (Accenture)
Accelerating Skills Acquisition in the Age of Intelligent Technologies (Deloitte)
Path to Prosperity. Why the Future of Work is Human (Deloitte)
‘Enabling Excellence through Equity’ Conference 2019
Credentials and the Future of Learning (UAC)
Case Study: 3D Virtual Workplace

Micro-Credentials Principles

The Australian Council of Professions continues to progress the creation of a Principles of Micro-Credentials document with broad-based input from the Professions and other stakeholders.

Our activities so far have been:

The next steps will be the compilation of information, references and views to form a Micro-Credentials Principles and Practice document.

2019-20 Strategic Plan

Our Strategic Plan for 2019-20 was released today.

The development process had started with the 2019 Strategic Review and Planning day on 25 June 2019 in Melbourne. Members were invited to participate and two facilitators assisted the review and planning process.

In summary, our overall Purpose, Vision and Mission were re-confirmed with the goal of becoming “the Meeting Place” for Thought Leaders on all things Professional.

Stategic Plan 2019-20 Overview

A Strategic Review and Refresh Day is planned for April 2020.

Micro-Credentials Round-Tables

The Australian Council of Profession’s inaugural series of Community of Practice Round-Table meetings continue the discussions and discourse that began at the Micro-Credentials National Summit in March 2019



The intent of these Round-Tables is:

  • to investigate how Professional Associations can develop relevant standards and accreditation practices that best support the implementation of micro-credentialing within CPD/CPE offerings, both in formal and non-formal award settings.
  • to explore the ways in which Professional Association CPD/CPE offerings can be linked to Professional Practice credentialing to address:
    – Life-long career learning
    – Engagement in the Professional Association community
    – Drive membership opportunities

Current definitions of the various micro-credentialing models are both confusing and varied. The way learning and training is recognized, accredited and validated is also changing with intrinsic on-the-job skills and best practices providing the most value and benefit to association members.

How can Professional Associations assist in developing a common language to best underpin this new educational landscape? How can we clearly define the differences between badging for learning and credentialing skills capability capture?

Professional Associations face a common challenge — how to remain relevant and expand their footprint in their particular domain. Success depends on the ability to create value for their brand. This free Round-Table is your opportunity to work with your peers within the Australian Council of Professions to determine how best to provide accreditation oversight of how Professional Practice credentials can help Associations address these common challenges.

Who should attend:
– Leaders of Professional Associations
– Directors of Professional Standards
– Heads of CPD/CPE Programmes

What you will take away from the Round-Table:

  • The common language that needs to be adopted to better understand the various models of micro-credentialing.
  • The types of Standards need to be developed around Micro-Credentialing
  • The Accreditation Practices that should underpin Micro-Credentialing


The generous support of the Australian Computer Society is gratefully acknowledged!

Micro-Credentials Summit 7&8 March

The inaugural National Micro‐Credentials Accreditation
Summit on 7&8 March in Melbourne was a run‐away success with over 270 registrations. We had to extend the event to two days and change the venue twice to accommodate the interest in the Summit!

After an inspiring Welcome to Country our keynoters Marcus O’Donnell (Pro‐Vice‐Chancellor Education, Deakin University), The Hon Trish White (National President and Chair, Engineers Australia), Prof Susan Elliott AM (DVC Education, Monash University), Prof Peter Noonan (AQF Review and VU), Anthony McClaran (CEO, TEQSA), Dr Simon Eassom (Executive General Manager Education, CPA Australia), Glenn Campbell (Executive Director, DeakinCo), etc. highlighted the various opportunities, aspects and challenges that Micro‐Credentials bring.

Overall, the speakers and participants agreed that Micro‐Credentials are well and truly upon us with all university speakers confirming that their programs to create and deliver Micro‐Credential units are well advanced or have already commenced. However, the issues of how Micro‐Credentials are evaluated and accredited as well as if they will eventually replace the traditional undergraduate degrees are still quite unclear and need more deliberations ‐ see the Summit Communiqué below. These questions will be explored in the two Round‐Tables in Sydney and Melbourne!

In another first, five of our Member Associations awarded CPD/CPE points to participants.

A very special Thank You to Dr Ash Jones and the team at DeakinCo for their generous support!

Professionalism and Ethics Forum 2018

We held a Members-Only Forum on Professionalism and Ethics on 17 November 2018 in Melbourne. Dr Wim VanDeKerckhove PhD, Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Employment and Work (CREW) at the University of Greenwich UK and a global leader in whistleblowing management standards gave the keynote. This was followed by presentations by A/Prof Eva Tsahuridu from RMIT and Barrister Philip Argy, Law Council of Australia.
A very comprehensive discussion ensued on how professionalism and its underlying culture of ethics (e.g. “Doing the Right Thing when Nobody is Looking”) defines our society and ensures its well‐being ‐ by professionals defending our citizens from the ill effects of “alternative facts”, “fake news”, “self‐appointed experts” and “profits before clients” conduct.

Our Professionalism and Ethics Commitee is planning to progress the outcomes of the Forum at a larger event next year.