The VET National Teaching & Learning Conference 2023, From Competence to Excellence, to be held on August 17 & 18 at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre, promises to be the biggest in-person VDC conference. Tickets are selling fast at only $565 (incl GST); less with a group booking discount.

Over 2 days, there will be plenty of professional learning opportunities with a focus on VET practitioners, as well as a stream of sessions featuring VET applied research for other VET Sector professionals.

  • Keynote presentations
  • Expert Panels
  • Teaching & Learning Workshops
  • Applied Research Sessions
  • Guided Tours of the WorldSkills Australia National Championships
  • Networking function

Together with stimulating and engaging Keynote speakers, another important part of the conference is the concurrent ‘Professional Learning Workshops’. These sessions, along with inspiring panel discussions and informative case studies, will reflect the fundamental aim of the conference, to empower teachers and trainers from public, private and community providers to improve the education and employment outcomes for VET students.

Here’s a preview of some of the topics and speakers:

Keynote Presentations

  • From Amateur to Professional with Dr Louise Mahler, Gravitas Expert & Keynote Speaker of the Year: Leadership body-language & voice
  • A Champion Attitude with Jacqui Cooper, 5-time Olympian, 5-time World Champion
  • Living a Life of Purpose with Nasir Sobhani, The Streets Barber, Hairdresser for the homeless
  • Dare to be Different with Aimee Stanton, The Lady Tradie, Plumber turned Tiny House Builder
  • Good People in a Complex System with Dr Susan James Relly, Professor in Vocational Education, Head of the School of Education; Faculty of Arts, Business, Law, and Economics; University of Adelaide


  • Using Innovative Learning Technologies, Including Virtual Reality in VET with Andrew Shea, CEO & Tertiary Education Expert, Builders Academy Australia/CWBTS
  • Helping learners excel – the role of AI and personalised learning in VET with Claire Field, expert in VET, International & Higher education, Principal at Claire Field & Associates

Research Presentations

  • Evaluating professional learning for the VET workforce: models & methods to measure impact with Dr Justin Brown, Principal Research Fellow, Tertiary Education, ACER
  • All things Quality: What the research says with Dr Joy de Leo OAM, Manager, Research & Data Analytics, NCVER
  • Beyond the pandemic: the use of online delivery in VET with Dr Tabatha Griffin, Team Leader, Research & Data Analytics, NCVER

Concurrent Workshops

  • Creating Optimal Learning Environments: Strategies for Authentic Learning & Excellence with Vanessa Trower, Award-winning Learning Professional, Nexperk Learning Partner, Nexperk
  • From Compliance to Excellence: Unleashing the Power of Academic Governance and Self-Assurance in VET with Kevin Ekendahl, CEO & Principal lead Auditor, Audit Express
  • Implementing design patterns for quality learner experiences: a TAE case study with Vicki Marchant, Project Manager, Education Design Patterns, TAFE NSW 

Panel Discussion

  • How do we move From Competence to Excellence facilitated by MC, Chemène Sinson, exclusive panel members include: Martin Powell, Dr Susan James Relly, Dr Louise Mahler, Dr Justin Brown, Clare Field, Andrew Shea
  • International Panel Discussion with Trevor Schwenke, CEO WorldSkills Australia (WSA) and international guests
  • Panel interview with Chemène Sinson & WSA Student Ambassadors