Understanding VCAL


The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL)

Apprentice in workshop

The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) is a practical option for students in Years 11 and 12. It is designed to prepare students for further education, training or employment by providing them with work-related experience, literacy and numeracy skills and an opportunity to develop personal skills. VCAL has three levels: foundation, intermediate and senior. It can be commenced in Year 11 or 12 at the level best matched to the student’s needs and abilities. Fully accredited modules and units are selected for four compulsory strands, including:

  • Literacy and Numeracy Skills
  • Industry Specific Skills
  • Work Related Skills
  • Personal Development Skills.

Students who choose VCAL are most likely to go on to training at TAFE institutes, start an apprenticeship or get a job after completing school, rather than applying for university, although a move into the VCE is not out of the question for students who change their mind. Any VCE units or intermediate or senior VCAL units completed as part of VCAL may count towards VCE completion. If your child wants to move in the opposite direction, satisfactory completion of any VCE units can be credited towards VCAL. Students who successfully complete VCAL receive a certificate and a statement of results that details the areas of study completed. They do not have to sit the GAT unless they are enrolled in a scored VCE VET Unit 3 and 4 sequence or a Unit 3 and 4 VCE study. See Understanding the VCE for more information about the GAT.

VCAL is offered across Victoria at many schools, TAFE institutes and Adult and Community Education (ACE) centres. For more information on the VCAL, refer to the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority website. 


Further information

Parents and students can find further information about tertiary study at The Good Universities Guide. The Good Universities Guide provides course and institution searches, institution ratings and helpful editorial for prospective teritary students.

Register below: