Table of Contents
- Vocational courses | An overview
- What is a vocational course?
- Who should pursue vocational courses?
- Best vocational courses list
- Pros and cons of vocational courses
- Things to remember!
- What next?
Vocational courses | An overview
Most bachelor’s degrees take about 3-4 years, with some taking longer. These types of courses cover a wide range of subjects. It helps students get a complete understanding of everything surrounding their field of study. But, vocational courses are more targeted and focused on a niche audience, with only the most relevant subject matter covered. A vocational course can help you kick-start a career in a specific job sector. So, without any further ado, let’s talk about vocational training courses and how you can pursue one.
What is a vocational course?
A vocational course is also known as Career Education/Technical Education. It aims at enhancing employability and field-specific skills. These courses are based solely on one particular trade, with less focus on theoretical/scholastic sections. They are active, direct learning courses that nearly always have an internship with job training as an essential part of the course.
Although some universities and colleges offer vocational courses, these are primarily offered at training centers, technical schools, career centers, and field-specific institutes. The purpose of vocational training courses is to prepare students for their chosen job by equipping them with the relevant skills.
Who should pursue vocational courses?
There are various cases in which people opt for a vocational course. These include:
Sometimes, a particular job will require a specific set of skills before you are eligible to apply. For example, many people know how to code and develop websites, but a company may require applicants to be trained in IT support. In this case, some pursue vocational courses to get a competitive edge over other job applicants. The more relevant your certification is, the higher the chance of getting a job in that field.
At other times, employers may wish to upskill their existing workforce. If a company is going through a change of direction, then it will usually sponsor training in a niche subject for its employees. Similarly, some companies also offer reimbursement for employees who voluntarily wish to gain new (relevant) skills.
People who pursue vocational training know the career they want and start the practical learning process at the earliest. For potential employers, the certificate act as a verification that you are skilled in the technical aspects of the job you are applying for.
In most cases, a vocational course will be of a much shorter duration, after which you receive a certification or diploma.
Best vocational courses list
This cannot be a complete list of all the best vocational courses since that would be a very long read indeed. Additionally, the name of the courses and the specifics of their curriculum may differ widely depending on your location and the institution you choose. So, we have done our best to keep things general and give you a well-rounded idea of the available courses.
Without further delay, here are some of the best vocational training courses:
Alternatively known as a general mechanic, contractor, or handyman, this course offers training in various aspects. These include plumbing, carpentry, home improvement, and tool usage. With this training, you will be qualified and trained to become a general tradesman and perform all sorts of maintenance works, furniture building, and similar craftsmanship. The employment options are many, such as home improvement and renovation, plumbing services, self-employment, etc. Similar courses are available for a diploma in mechanical technician, certified electrician, and more.
The hospitality industry includes many sectors under one term; a bachelor’s degree in Hotel Management will cover all the responsibilities over several years. But, you can skip the longer duration and opt for specialized diplomas or vocational courses in catering management, food and beverage service, culinary, hospitality, baking and confectionery, housekeeping, and much more. Since these certificates focus only on one aspect, they run for a shorter duration and typically cost less than a full degree. Employment options include hotels, resorts, restaurants, catering services, etc. Besides, you can also run your hospitality business by doing this course.
Air travel has been booming around the world, thanks to budget airlines. As a result, the need for flight attendants has been on the rise to meet increased travel demands. Various airline companies and training centers offer flight attendant training. Being a flight attendant has its perks, including plenty of travel options and privileges, generous salary opportunities, etc. Additionally, some airlines may include the cost of training as part of your salary.
There are many courses available that cover a range of subjects, from specialist SEO certificate programs to general marketing diplomas, technical web development, and design training. Depending on your skills and preferences, you can choose to get trained in a general digital marketing course or something more specific. This field has been steadily growing, so there is no dearth of job opportunities at digital marketing companies.
5. Digital Media Creation
This broad topic covers vocational courses in graphics, design, 2D and 3D animation, game development, UI design, and similar. Although better suited for people with a creative inclination, this kind of specialized course can be opted for by anyone. These courses make you aware of the software, design principles, and technical aspects of your field.
6. Other Creative Courses
You can also opt for courses in fashion, photography, beauty and makeup, jewelry design, and more. Some of these courses may last up to 3 years, and some may also cost the same as a bachelor’s degree. However, these vocational courses offer hands-on training and practical knowledge, which can help you set your foot in the industry.
7. Language Expert
This type of vocational course is for people who are fluent in two or more languages. This usually means you will need to be a native speaker of one language or have an undergraduate degree. Many companies and even government agencies hire translators, interpreters, foreign language teachers, and local staff in a foreign country. This can be a useful upskilling course to broaden your employment options.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of vocational training programs available. They range from Medical Lab Technician and Nutrition Diplomas to Tourism Management and Office assistants. You can choose the course as per your goals and interests.
Pros and cons of vocational courses
- A diploma or certificate training course is usually shorter than a full-time degree.
- It is usually cheaper, practical, and makes you more job-ready.
- Real-world training is part of the course, which helps you experience the challenges and figure out the solutions well before you enter the job market.
- Some vocational courses are nearly as long as getting a degree, and some are even more expensive than most bachelor’s programs.
- A vocational course is highly-specific, so it lacks general knowledge about other fields.
- Job opportunities are limited to a small sector. This might make it difficult for you to get into your desired field.
Things to remember!
If you are considering this type of course, then you need to be wary of a few things. These include:
- Always choose a reliable, trusted, and well-known institution for your course. You may find a lot of free or cheaper alternatives when you begin researching study options. But, these may not always be the best quality and may not offer up-to-date course material.
- Secondly, try to choose programs that offer certificates that are accepted widely. This will make it a valuable addition to your CV.
If you have a passion or a dream of a career in a specific field, then consider a vocational course. Many reputable institutions offer these courses, and you will find one that suits your needs. Whatever you decide, we hope you find success, fulfillment, and satisfaction in your career!
We hope you have got enough information on the vocational courses here. If you have any questions/suggestions, drop a comment or reach out to us!
Q1. Does a photography course take longer than one in filmmaking?
Answer- A diploma course in photography usually lasts one year, while a filmmaking course will take a minimum of 1 year. Keep in mind that you can also pursue a bachelor’s degree in either of the two (or a combined program).
Q2. Should I do a Hotel Management diploma or degree?
Answer- Hotel Management degrees usually last between 3-4 years, making you eligible to pursue a master’s degree or Ph.D. It costs more than a diploma and has a better scope. A vocational course can be a simple certificate course lasting a few weeks to a 2-year diploma program. Depending on your career goals and financial position, you’ll need to decide which is better for you.
Q3. Can I do multiple vocational courses at a time?
Answer- Depending on your institute and study sector, you may have the option to combine courses, attempt multiple courses, or even take on a vocational course adjacent to your bachelor’s degree. Some institutions may have rules against this, though. So, you may need to find out this information on a case-by-case basis.