Upskilling for the future of work

Upskilling for the future of work

Over the next 15 years, new automation technologies are expected to add between $1.1 trillion and $4 trillion to the economy, according to McKinsey Australia.

While McKinsey estimates between 25 and 46 per cent of current work activities could be automated by 2030, this will create new opportunities for workers and companies. Australians will benefit from new jobs, higher productivity, rising wages and economic growth.

As technological disruption reshapes the employment landscape, employees have the opportunity to upskill, differentiate their personal ‘value proposition’ and embrace the changing nature of work.


Enabling lifelong learning

In digital economies such as Australia’s, success in the labour market will be increasingly characterised by a commitment to lifelong learning and readiness to adapt to the jobs of tomorrow. This becomes even more important in ageing populations where people will be required to work for longer.

From 2011 to 2016, the number of Australians with a postgraduate degree increased by 46 per cent according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, indicating a growing appetite for lifelong learning and awareness of the need to continue upskilling to keep pace with the changing world of work.

Studying throughout your career promotes new knowledge and professional skillsets, while opening up career benefits including promotions, pay rises or career changes. Online study provides an accessible pathway to lifelong learning for those traditionally excluded from higher education. It enables postgraduate students already in the workforce, regionally or rurally located or with families at home, to fit study around their lives. Online study also promotes greater digital literacy, raising individual employability and corporate competitiveness.

QUT Online’s flexible study options, from postgraduate degrees to single units to micro units, equip students with the theoretical and practical skills to achieve the best possible graduate outcomes, promote digital inclusivity and prepare them to prosper in, and adapt to, a rapidly changing job landscape.

Harnessing innovation

Innovation is at the core of QUT’s approach to education, applying technology and immersive digital environments to teaching, research and engagement. Wherever there is internet, QUT Online provides a place to learn, preparing students to succeed in the job market by exposing them to the tools and channels of the modern workplace.

QUT Vice-Chancellor Margaret Sheil said new technology is opening up endless opportunities and changing the way we study and work.

“Innovation has always been central to our ideology at QUT,” Professor Sheil said.

“Our vision is to emulate this ethos online, creating a learning experience that enables graduates to thrive in the workplace of today and the future.

“We achieve this by combining the knowledge of our academic experts and best-in-class learning designers. This creates a digital learning experience for students that is on-demand and user-focused, so that they are well-positioned to meet their career goals.”

QUT Online provides access to expert researchers and teaching staff at the forefront of innovation and their respective industries to prepare students for the challenge of specialising or taking on a new field of study, with real-world based curriculum and expansive peer-to-peer engagement opportunities.

The quality and range of courses available through QUT Online, coupled with best-practice teaching methods and support systems, is redefining how postgraduate study can enable companies and individuals to invest in lifelong learning and future-proof for an online workforce.

Visit QUT Online.


QUTeX offers short courses, professional development and executive education. By bringing together knowledge from across the university QUTeX helps individuals and organisations upskill and stay relevant using QUT’s real-world focus.

Courses are available in:

  • Building and planning
  • Creative practice, communication and design
  • Health and community
  • Law and justice
  • Business
  • Education
  • Languages
  • Science, technology, engineering and mathematics

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Open online learning

More than 400,000 people have now studied QUT’s Open online courses.

The university’s online program, in partnership with FutureLearn, provides access to a range of short courses, all delivered online, and most courses free of charge.

Taught by our academic leaders QUT open online courses deliver up-to-date knowledge on a range of subjects from robotics to social media analytics to creating apps in the classroom. Professional development courses such as leadership coaching and clinical supervision for health professionals are also available.

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