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Skills Matter student feedback results 2021

The impact of COVID-19 continued to pose many challenges for students in the Skills Matter programme throughout 2021, but the latest Skills Matter student feedback survey showed job and course satisfaction has increased.

Respondents of the annual student survey described an increase in job and course satisfaction, in comparison to the 2020 Skills Matter cohort. 90 per cent reported they felt supported by their organisation and programme provider. This is compared 85 per cent in 2020.

Due to COVID-19, learning in 2021 remained mostly online, and students continued to experience increased workloads, with heightened needs from the communities they support. With these additional challenges, most found it stressful to navigate work, life and study.

Despite this, the feedback report contained mostly positive results.

90 per cent wanted to pursue further learning opportunities. Students also described feeling better equipped to work with Māori and their whānau.

Students provided useful suggestions for improvement, including more collaborative kōrero with employers and providers to reduce student caseloads as well as continued access to supervisors and support people. These are important considerations to ensure the ongoing engagement and development of the mental health and addiction workforce.

Skills Matter is a workforce development programme that, on behalf of the Ministry of Health, funds programme providers to deliver post-entry clinical vocational training to mental health and addiction clinicians.

The programme aims to support new entrants to develop the required clinical skills and knowledge as they transition into practice and to support existing practitioners in mental health and addiction to develop advanced skills in high-priority areas. Students study while they are in employment.

Students in the Skills Matter programme were invited to complete an end-of-year survey about their course experiences. The survey looked at challenges faced, support received, ability to apply new learning, and how their learning has impacted on confidence, knowledge growth and practice change. Of the 502 surveys that were sent out, 225 (45%) students responded.

See the full 2021 Skills Matter student feedback report

For more information about the impact of COVID-19 on Skills Matter students’ study and work, see this evaluation report on the impact of COVID-19 on students participating in Skills Matter programmes, conducted by Te Pou.

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