What role do professional year programs play in developing work-readiness attributes for Australian-educated international postgraduate students?


Jones, Asheley (2018) What role do professional year programs play in developing work-readiness attributes for Australian-educated international postgraduate students? Other Degree thesis, Victoria University.


In 2008, following Commonwealth legislation creating the 485 Graduate Visa for migration purposes, the professional accrediting bodies in Accounting, IT and Engineering were mandated to develop Professional Year Programs (PYPs) intended to alleviate the gap between discipline specific qualifications and the skills required to meet employer demands. This research conducted a critical examination of one such program: SMIPA, the Skilled Migration Program for Accounting. This was a work readiness program for international accounting graduates who studied for their accounting degrees onshore within the Australian higher education ecosystem. The primary research question framing this research: Can SMIPA be regarded as a work-readiness program upon which to model future graduate training programs? Underpinned by Bourdieu’s institutionalised capital framework, a tripartite qualitative evaluation is undertaken through multiple lenses: 337 SMIPA graduate survey responses, semi-structured interviews with six SMIPA licenced partners and a sixty-minute interview with an early Joint Accounting Body initiator. The aim of the research is to determine the role SMIPA plays in providing graduates an opportunity to improve their generic skills, so as to find work within the Australian accounting environments. The intent is to analyse whether this program offers a blue print to model the implementation of future work readiness programs. Five recommendations for the future directions of the internship component of the SMIPA program are provided, along with recommendations for future research opportunities. It is concluded that with some significant modifications to defined measurements of the program’s intended learning outcomes, a transparent process for assessing the procurement and delivery of the internship component, as well as a far more rigorous quality assurance of the operations component that would curtail the more extreme migration and educational agent practices, SMIPA could be considered a suitable model to inform a national work integrated learning program providing a blueprint to better prepare both domestic and international tertiary educated graduates for entry into the 21st century global workforce.

Additional Information

Doctor of Business Administration

Item type Thesis (Other Degree thesis)
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/37854
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1301 Education Systems
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > College of Business
Current > Division/Research > Graduate School of Business
Keywords Skilled Migration Program for Accounting; SMIPA; work readiness program; graduate training; accounting graduates; graduates; skills; work experience; internship; work integrated learning; international students
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