goals & motivationgoals & motivation

Personal motivation is a factor which affects student participation and successful completion of a course of study. In the audio and video files in this section learners share some of the goals and aspirations which motivate their participation in education and training. Conversely, some of the learners talk about influences that destroy the motivation to engage in training and employment: drugs, alcohol, government and royalty payments.

  • What the learners say
  • What the trainers say


HeleanaHeleana is a trainee teacher and is enrolled in a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning. She previously worked in the areas of land management and eco-cultural tourism. She has completed the Certificates II and III in Spoken and Written English and is completing her final units in a tertiary preparation course concurrently with her teaching studies.  

Heleana talks about goals and ambitions

Heleana talks about attitudes to education and the nothing generation


JoelJoel is a work-based apprentice at a regional university campus. He is currently enrolled in Certificate III in Business and is working in an office environment. He has previously completed Certificate III in Music and Certificate in Commercial Cookery

Joel talks about success


AngeleeAngelee is a work-based apprentice. She is currently enrolled in Certificate III in Business and is working in an office environment.

Angelee talks about motivation


JoelVictor is a ranger supervisor in an Indigenous community. He has previously completed Certificate III in Conservation and Land Management.

Victor talks about motivation

Victor talks about destroying motivation through mining royalties

Victor talks about training


JoelIvan is a ranger in an Indigenous community. He is currently enrolled in Certificate II in Conservation and Land Management.

Ivan talks about motivation impacted by distractions & alcohol

Ivan talks about a goal to improve reading & writing


AlbertaAlberta is a cleaner at a school in an Indigenous community. She is enrolled in Certificate I in Work Preparation which is being delivered in the workplace.

Alberta talks about being qualified


JacintaJacinta started working in the health field and commenced VET training in Indigenous health work. Jacinta is now a Teacher Assistant in an Indigenous community. She has completed Certificate III in Indigenous Education Work and is currently enrolled in a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning.

Jacinta talks about becoming qualified


MaritaNardene is the current Vice-Chancellors Indigenous Career Cadet at Charles Darwin University. She is studying a Bachelor of Commerce specialising in marketing. She previously completed a Certificate IV in Marketing and a Certificate IV in Community Services.

Nardene talks about how she got started in VET

Nardene talks about the importance of a friendly and positive learning environment

Nardene talks of her motivations for starting VET and progressing into Higher Education

Nardene talks about some of the challenges in achieving her goals

Nardene talks of being a role model to inspire Indigenous people to gain an education


DebbieDebbie is the workplace supervisor and trainer in a textile art business in an Indigenous community.

Debbie talks about being passionate


Allen MurphyAllen is a musician and music producer as well as a VET trainer in music. He has worked and taught in Indigenous communities for many years.  

Allen talks about his own motivation and those of his students

Allen talks about the trainers role in inspiring passion in order to for people to put the work in




Strategies for trainers:

Assist students to clarify their own goals and aspirations.

Motivate students by making explicit the connection between training, the student’s individual goals, as well as the benefits to their families and communities.

Some learners indicate that they have been accused of abandoning their Indigeneity by pursuing study, training and employment opportunities. Trainers need to be aware that such tensions may exist.

Reinforce students’ identity as a learner through positive reinforcement of the individual’s skills, abilities and efforts.

Identify role models who can provide learners with inspiration and insight into the possibilities within themselves.