Year 8 to Year 9

​When your child is in Year 8 and 9 they begin to explore and focus on different career possibilities that match their interests, skills and values. Your child might be interested in starting their senior secondary certificate – Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) or Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) – in Year 10. Or maybe they want to start a Vocational Education and Training (VET) subject as part of their VCE or VCAL in Year 10. It’s a good idea for you and your child to meet with the school’s careers practitioner before decisions about subjects are made.

You might also like to talk about the following questions with your child:

  • What subjects are they doing, and what do they enjoy about them?
  • What subjects they are good at?
  • What subjects would they like to improve in? How can they work towards that?
  • As they are getting ready to choose electives, what have they thought about?
  • Can they start VCE or VCAL studies (including VET) in Year 10?
  • Do you both understand the difference between VCE and VCAL, or do you have more questions?
  • Do you both understand how VET contributes to VCE and VCAL?
  • Have you met the careers practitioner and the VCE, VCAL or VET coordinators at your child’s school?
  • What sort of careers has your child explored so far? What does this tell you about their interests, skills and values?
  • Does your child know who they can talk to about career advice at school?
  • How is your child coping with homework? Are they keeping up to date? How can you help them?
  • Have they thought about the value of continuing to study a language other than English?
  • Are they thinking about getting a part-time or casual job?
  • What kind of work experience is your child interested in? Who can help them get a work placement?
  • Where can you find reliable information about careers?

If your child’s school offers the opportunity to start VCE or VCAL units (including VET) in Year 10, make sure you and your child understand the following:

  • How many VCE or VCAL units (including VET) will the school allow them to enrol in for Year 10?
  • If they start a VCE, VCAL or a VET in Schools subject in Year 10 and complete it in Year 11, how will this affect their Australian Tertiary Admission Rank at the end of Year 12?
  • Can students transfer from VCAL to VCE or from VCE to VCAL at the end of the year if they want to?
  • What effect will starting VET or VCAL at Year 10 have on workplace learning? Will there need to be extra time in a work placement? How will the school help to organise this?

You play an important role in preparing your child for their future career. Our online resource Engaging Parents in Career Conversations (EPiCC) helps school career practitioners encourage and empower you to get your child thinking and talking about subject choices, courses and career opportunities.

EPiCC covers the career development of children from Year 6 through to Year 12. EPiCC also brings together information on a broad range of options available to young people when they leave school.

For more information, see: Engaging Parents in Career Conversations

Taking part in an EPiCC workshop at your child’s school is a great way to learn more about how you can support your child on their career journey. Contact the career practitioner at your child’s school to find out more.

Helpful Resources

Career Action Plans

The Career Action Plan helps young people to develop their awareness and understanding of education, training and employment options, and to develop the skills, knowledge and capabilities to effectively manage their careers.

The Career Action Plan assists your child to set goals and develop actions to achieve those goals. The plan covers the three stages of career development: self-development, career exploration and career management. The school will provide activities to help students explore these stages.

Your child should be actively involved in developing their Career Action Plan. You can support them by showing interest, asking questions and helping them explore opportunities.

For more information, see: Career Action Plans

Job Guide

The Job Guide is written and produced for secondary school students. This resource includes information on more than 500 occupations, contact details for training providers and job search information and advice. The Job Guide is available online. It’s a great place to learn about the skills and abilities needed for different occupations and the available training.

For more information, see: Job Guide


myfuture is Australia’s comprehensive online resource that you can use to:

  • talk to your child about careers
  • find how their interests and abilities can lead to a job
  • discover what they are really good at and explore their interests, skills and occupations
  • help your child choose courses and training options
  • help your child explore their options through interactive activities, such as Mini Career Explorer.

For more information, see: myfuture

myfuture has a new Assist Your Child feature for parents that gives you advice on how to:

  • talk to them about careers
  • help your child with courses and training
  • explore interests, skills and occupations
  • help with work experience and job applications.

For more information, see: Assist Others

Career Bullseye posters

These posters help young people see how the subjects they study at school link to jobs, and indicate the level of education and training required. Occupation profiles include information such as duties and tasks, related courses, earnings and vacancies.

For more information, see: Career Bullseyes​

Victorian Skills Gateway

The Victorian Skills Gateway is a one-stop shop for Victorian vocational education and training. It includes information about apprenticeships, traineeships and courses at Registered Training Organisations, including TAFE, Learn Local and private training providers. You can search for information about occupations, courses, training providers, video and written case studies.

The Victorian Skills Gateway includes a parents’ toolkit, which gives you information and advice on helping your child choose a career path.

For more information, see: Victorian Skills Gateway parents' toolkit

Youth Central

Youth Central is a Victorian government online initiative for young Victorians, from 12 to 25 years of age, with information and advice about jobs, study, travel, money and events.

For more information, see: Youth Central​