College of Advanced Education

College of Advanced Education

The College of Advanced Education (CAE) was a class of Australian tertiary education institution that existed from 1967 until the early 1990s. They ranked below universities, but above Colleges of Technical and Further Education (TAFE) which offer trade qualification. CAEs were designed to provide formal post-secondary qualifications of a more vocational nature than those available from universities, chiefly in such areas as teaching, nursing, accountancy and information technology.



Colleges of Advanced Education were similar in ideals and physical facilities to Australian universities of the period, but were state owned and controlled instead of federally funded and independent. CAEs offered shorter courses, such as certificates and diplomas, and were specifically excluded from awarding degrees, which were the purview of the universities. Additionally, their staff, who were not required to undertake research, were generally on lower pay scales that their university counterparts.

CAEs were designed to complement universities, forming a binary system modelled on that of the United Kingdom. This system was created by the Menzies government on the advice of the Committee on the Future of Tertiary Education in Australia, chaired by Sir Leslie H. Martin, who was Chairman of the Australian Universities Commission from 1959 to 1966.

While the initial intention was for CAEs not to issue degrees, in the first year of the sector's establishment, the Victorian College of Pharmacy was permitted to issue a degree by the Victorian government, and its Commonwealth funding was not cut off for breaking the rules. Many other degree courses followed, and the policy was reviewed.

Until 1974, the sector mainly comprised technical, agricultural and specialist paramedical colleges. In that year, the state government controlled Teachers College systems became CAEs, leading to teaching students comprising half of all students in the sector.

The colleges were known by a number of different titles:

  • "Colleges of Advanced Education" were generally former Teachers Colleges that slowly diversified their course offerings after their name (and often concurrent structural) changes. These changes happened at a time when there were more teachers being trained than the local market could support.
  • "Institutes of Technology" were oriented toward vocational education, and offered a range of courses up to higher education level.
  • Other names, often with the title "College" or "Institute" of Higher or Advanced Education, were also used.

This sector ceased to exist when, between 1989 and 1992, the Hawke-Keating government implemented the sweeping reforms of Education Minister John Dawkins. The states, eager for increased education funding, merged CAEs either with existing universities or with each other to form new universities. Details of these mergers are available in an AVCC report, see External links below.

Former Colleges of Advanced Education

Former Institutes of Technology

In each state, the most prestigious university created from an Institute of Technology became a founding member of the Australian Technology Network.

Former Institutes of Advanced/Higher/Tertiary Education

See also

External links

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