WITH the number vacant teaching positions expected to rise in the coming years, it is no surprise that institutions like Swinburne Online are offering a selection of courses that prepare candidates for a career in the profession.
Online education is considered as vital for prospective new teachers in regional and rural areas because students can undertake study and placements in their own communities.
Education students completing their studies in their home towns – no matter where they are located in Australia – benefit their communities by filling the deficit of teachers.
“There is expected to be high demand for primary teachers as many teachers in the workforce near retirement age,” said Sheena O’Hare, director of Teacher Education Programs at Swinburne Online.
“As a new group of teachers comes through with skills that are appropriate to school learners of today — such as IT expertise, ability to think creatively and current knowledge of new national standards for teachers — these pre-service teachers will be well qualified to step into these vacant roles feeling confident that they have the skills to support their learners.”
Swinburne Online offers four teaching courses: Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood), Bachelor of Education (Primary), Graduate Diploma of Teaching (Primary) and Masters of Teaching (Primary).
Because of the predicted growing need for teachers, the Bachelor of Education (Primary) degree was introduced in 2013
“Students undertake a range of practical experiences in primary schools and other appropriate settings,” Ms O’Hare said about the bachelor course.
“We also have a strong placement office with experienced staff able to offer advice and support to students when planning for their school placements.
“Although this course is offered online, it is very different from a distance or correspondence course.
“Swinburne Online takes the student experience very seriously and does everything to ensure that students feel supported throughout their learning journey.”
Swinburne education courses have attracted many people from other vocations looking to take a new career direction.
“Many of our online students are presently working in other roles, and take this opportunity to retrain in a new profession,” Ms O’Hare said.
“And many students are working either full time or are caring for children. (Our courses) offer the opportunity to both study and work concurrently.”
Swinburne students come from far and wide, with around one in four (23 per cent) living in a regional or rural areas of Australia, but with the university’s “collaborative approach” it is had established highly interactive online spaces for students so they feel part of the student community.
Learn more about Swinburne Online's education courses by visiting http://www.swinburneonline.edu.au.
* This article is written by an independent journalist as part of a commercial arrangement between Fairfax Media and Swinburne Online.