A work-based study of hospitality vocational education and training and its relevance to independent restaurants in Australia

Masters Thesis


Lowe, Damien. 2023. A work-based study of hospitality vocational education and training and its relevance to independent restaurants in Australia. Masters Thesis Master of Professional Studies. University of Southern Queensland. https://doi.org/10.26192/z6213
Title

A work-based study of hospitality vocational education and training and its relevance to independent restaurants in Australia

TypeMasters Thesis
AuthorsLowe, Damien
Supervisor
1. FirstProf Petrea Redmond
2. SecondMegan Axelsen
3. ThirdDr Lee Fergusson
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameMaster of Professional Studies
Number of Pages104
Year2023
PublisherUniversity of Southern Queensland
Place of PublicationAustralia
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.26192/z6213
Abstract

This study examines the significance of vocational education and training (VET) in enhancing employability skills within the hospitality industry, with a specific focus on independent restaurants in Southeast Queensland, Australia. Despite the importance of VET to this sector, its relevance to front-of-house operations in independent restaurants remains relatively unexplored. To address this gap, the present study investigates the alignment of VET programs with the needs and expectations of restauranteurs and explores the necessity for VET qualifications for successful employment in the hospitality domain. Adopting a qualitative approach, the study employs semi-structured interviews with independent restaurant owners and managers, along with an in-depth analysis of relevant literature on VET and its relationship with the hospitality industry. The findings of this research have two aims: 1) To highlight the substantial role of VET hospitality programs and their alignment with the needs and expectations of staff in independent restaurants. Additionally, this research aims to contribute to the success of independent restaurants by enhancing service quality, refining employee skills, and promoting competitiveness in a dynamic and evolving industry environment; and 2) the study aims to identify significant challenges within the current VET curriculum for the hospitality industry. These challenges include legislative constraints and time commitments associated with VET programs, limited access to suitable training initiatives, and suitably qualified trainers. This aim is also to determine if VET qualifications are a requirement for employment. To strengthen this study, the method of content analysis has been used throughout the analysis of the study. This approach improves the rigour of the research by examining and interpreting textual data from interviews and literature. Thus, providing a more comprehensive understanding of the issues that arose. Nonetheless, the research is exploratory, providing valuable insights and opportunities for further investigation into the intricacies of hospitality curricula in relation to independent restaurants and other sectors of the hospitality industry. Ultimately, this study provides implications for enhancing the relevance and effectiveness of VET for independent restaurants in Australia, enabling them to meet the demands of the industry, enhance service quality, and elevate the employability skills of their workforce.

Keywordsvocational ; education; training; hospitality; restaurants; management
Contains Sensitive ContentDoes not contain sensitive content
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020390114. Vocational education and training curriculum and pedagogy
390301. Continuing and community education
350401. Food and hospitality services
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Byline AffiliationsSchool of Education
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