I can say there are a number of issues and attitudes that are causing the trend:
1. In NSW any IT qualification that you have is now seen by the state government and the NSW Department of Education as obsolete and invalid unless you've been working full-time in the field for at least three years out of the last five years. It also applies to many other qualifications. I suspect this is also the case in the other states but have no direct knowledge of that.
2. Many of the technical college who provide the IT tech training do NOT employ people as teaching staff unless they have a Bachelors of Education, thus they look for teachers who add on a tech skill or knowledge later. Many often only have tech skills that they pick up from text books while they teach tech courses. The courses are much more 'rote procedure' orientated than real 'hands on skill' training; problem detection skills are almost non existent in the training. This is very much the case with the tech college IT courses, and I suspect is flowing through to the university courses on IT and other subjects as well.
3. A lot of the tech colleges are using training books and aids created by teachers nor techs, resulting in the book having many errors which they teach to the students. Their attitude is the book is right, even when they have tech qualified people in the class who try to tell them otherwise while showing them from the more expensive text books they have. Part of this being the books they use are produced in-house and save them money, so they have a vested interest in having them as being the 'correct' way to teach.
4. Outside of the large companies and government, there is little demand for in-house IT staff now. And what little is being offered is at relatively lower wages than before.
5. More and more organisations are looking for recently trained people over experienced people as they're usually cheaper to employ in wages and related expenses. A related trend is the push for more and more qualifications and experience in the same employee.
6. With more an more ex corporate lease computers entering the second hand market at lower prices, fewer private individuals are keeping their older gear operational and there's a growing trend to simply replace instead of fix any computer that's giving them trouble of any sort. This means less work for IT techs outside of the big companies and government agencies.
The overall results of the above is a lower level of job opportunities and wages in the field, outside of big corporate and government employment. The second and third point is also trending to a lower level of knowledge and capability amongst those trained in the tech colleges and universities. In a discussion with a recent graduate of a combined local tech college / university multi-year course on creating websites I was shocked to learn they were NOT taught how to write any code, it was all about how to use a few specific proprietary programs to create web pages and web sites via drag and drop processes within the software. This is very much a growing trend within the NSW education system, and I suspect Australia wide. The result is people who believe they know what they're doing, but do NOT have the knowledge to work below the surface of the technology they're using.
The real sad part of all this is the teachers really believe any trained teacher can pick up any tech course knowledge needed to teach from the books or even write a book on the tech subject, and that what they're teaching is all a tech needs to know to work in the field.
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