Phil Rutherford<br/><span class='designation'>VET Researcher, Author and Systems specialist</span>

Phil Rutherford
VET Researcher, Author and Systems specialist

Bridging the Gap between TVET Curricula and Industry Needs 

During this presentation Dr Rutherford will pose two questions: Firstly, who decides what is or is not competent performance? The second question concerns whether or not training alone is sufficient for an individual to achieve a level of competence required in the modern workplace.

Dr Rutherford will share the results of post-doctoral research conducted over the past 15 years, research which demonstrates, for example, that training packages and resultant curricula are largely written around a level of competence that is predominantly theoretical and unproven. Dr Rutherford will contend that few employers are given an opportunity to contribute to any analysis of the skills and knowledge essential to the modern workplace, with the result that these are often taught out of context and away from the environment in which trainees must apply them.

There is a significant body of research which suggests that unless, or until, skills and knowledge are applied in context then trainees cannot be deemed competent, no matter how rigorous the assessment process. Until then they can only be seen as having undertaking a course of learning. This presentation will contend that the trainer’s role is to not only develop the skills and knowledge identified in the training package curricula but to also help trainees to bridge the gap between the skills and knowledge gained during their training, and where they must apply them.

Speaker Biography

Dr Phil Rutherford is an internationally respected expert on vocational education and training. With over 25 years’ experience in the creation of first generation VET systems in such countries as the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia, and in the Middle East. He continues to advise governments and Fortune 500 companies here and around the world on modern training and assessment practices that achieve economic, business and strategic outcomes.

Dr Rutherford is a recognised leader in the field of competency-based training and assessment. He has introduced cutting edge training and assessment processes into many countries and trained hundreds of students in modern VET and competency-based practices. He has published widely on the subject of competency-based training, assessment, recognition of prior learning, and VET systems and practices, and continues to be an advisor at the highest levels of government and the military.

Dr Rutherford lives in the Australian Capital Territory and continues to travel widely to present at national and international conferences. He is married with four children and enjoys music, reading and travel.