World TVET Database - Country Profiles

Thailand

TVET Country Profile
1. TVET mission
2. System
3. Governance and financing
4. TVET teachers and trainers
5. Qualifications
6. Projects
7. Statistical information
8. Links
9. References
Thailand
published: 2015-10-26

1. TVET mission, legislation and national policy or strategy

TVET mission

The mission of TVET in Thailand is to develop skilled and technical human resources and to ensure that Thailand continues to play an important role in the international labour and economic market.

TVET strategy

TVET programmes are developed in accordance with the National Education Plan (2002-2016) in order to develop human resources to the levels needed by the labour market. The promotion of TVET programmes is also supported by a number of other documents, including:

(1) The 10th National Economic and Social Development Plan emphasised the importance of TVET and aimed to increase enrolment in TVET programmes from 42% to 50% of the total student enrolment by 2011. Other objectives included to:

  • Strengthen the collaboration between vocational colleges and industrial groups and other stakeholders;
  • Improve the policy framework of the government for the national TVET system; and
  • Develop competency standards in order to ensure the quality of human resource development.
(2) In accordance with the Dakar Framework for Action, the National Education for All Plan of Action for Thailand sets a number of TVET-related objectives. These objectives are divided into two phases. The first phase, from 2002-2006, focused on:

  • Expanding the accessibility of vocational job training for grade 9 and 12 graduates who are not continuing to tertiary level education;
  • Improving the knowledge and skill competences of at least 50% of the workforce to a lower secondary education level; and
  • Expanding the provision of programmes and education services, including non-formal TVET, to promote learning and life skills development.
The second phase, from 2007-2016, focuses on, amongst other things, equal access and opportunities for all Thais to high quality and flexible continuing education programmes in accordance with their needs, interests, and actual skill levels.

TVET legislation

  • The basic guidelines for the national education system in Thailand are established in the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand (1997) and the National Education Act (1999). Specifically the legislative documents guarantee all Thai citizens the right to receive basic education for a minimum of 12 years.
  • The Vocational Act (2008)regulates the national TVET system. Particularly, the Act establishes the various forms of TVET, and states that TVET is provided in: (1) colleges and institutes which form part of the formal TVET system; (2) non-formal institutions which provide an education whose curricula and content are compatible with and appropriate to the needs of the various target groups; and (3) with entrepreneurs and in state enterprises and government agencies.
Sources:

  • Choomnoon, S (2011). Thailand. In Emerging Challenges and Trends in TVET in the Asia-Pacific Region, S. Majumdar (Ed.). 219-235. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
  • Ministry of Education (2009). The Development and State of the Art of Adult Learning and Education (ALE). National Report of Thailand. Bangkok: Ministry of Education.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Thailand. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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2. TVET formal, non-formal and informal systems

Scheme compiled by UNESCO-UNEVOC and extracted from Choomnoon, S (2011). Thailand. In Emerging Challenges and Trends in TVET in the Asia-Pacific Region, S. Majumdar (Ed.). 219-235. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.

Upon completing six years of primary education, students proceed to a secondary education which completes 12 years of basic education. The secondary education level is composed of two cycles:

  • A general academic lower secondary education lasting 3 years; and
  • An upper secondary education which is divided into general academic education, and secondary vocational/technical education, both lasting 3 years.
Formal TVET system

Formal TVET programmes are offered at the secondary education level. Formal TVET programmes at the upper secondary education level are provided in vocational colleges and institutes and last three years. The types of colleges providing formal TVET can be classified as follows:

  • Technical colleges;
  • Vocational colleges;
  • Agricultural and technology colleges;
  • Commercial colleges;
  • Industrial and ship building technology colleges;
  • Fishery colleges;
  • Administration and tourism colleges;
  • Polytechnic colleges;
  • Automotive industry colleges;
  • Golden Jubilee Royal goldsmith colleges; and
  • Arts and crafts colleges.
Based primarily on the German model, students are also able to attend dual system and apprenticeships programmes. Dual system programmes are partly organised in vocational institutes under the Ministry of Education, and partly with entrepreneurs or state enterprises and government agencies. Dual system programmes also last three years and more than half the time is spent gaining practical experience.

TVET programmes in Thailand are linked to national, regional and community needs. Students can choose between nine specialisations offered at the colleges. These specialisations are as follows:

  • Trade and industry;
  • Arts and crafts;
  • Home economics;
  • Commerce and business administration;
  • Tourism industry;
  • Agriculture;
  • Fishery;
  • Textile industry; and
  • Information and Communications Technology (ICT).
In the formal TVET system, students are also able to complete short TVET programmes, generally lasting up to 225 hours. These TVET programmes are targeted at those who have completed at least primary education and aim to provide students with vocational skills for higher education or the labour market. Students who take three to five years of short courses are awarded a certificate. Short TVET programmes are also available to students from the general academic education who have selected a vocational or technical course as their major, minor or elective.

TVET programmes at the tertiary education level are offered in tertiary level colleges and universities. TVET programmes are normally provided in two cycles, each lasting two years. However, associate degree programmes lasting two years are also offered in universities and colleges.

Students who have completed a two year post-secondary TVET programme are able to switch to the undergraduate programme and attend the last year. Upon passing the final examination, students are awarded with an undergraduate qualification.

Non-formal and informal TVET systems

Non-formal and adult programmes are provided in a number of settings, including:

  • occupational development programmes which aim to develop students’ vocational and occupation skills. The programmes emphasise the importance of the development of life skills in order to overcome unemployment and meet community needs. Programmes are organised in: (1) short occupation training programmes for life skill development; (2) skills training for job employment; (3) group learning for students of the same occupation or trade; and (4) occupational development through the application of technology such as Information and Communications Technology (ICT).
  • Non-formal vocational programmes which involve: (1) short training programmes; (2) group vocational courses; (3) vocational certificate programmes equivalent to lower secondary school; and (4) non-formal occupational certificate programmes.
Informal TVET programmes are organised in a number of ways, for example in community centres and science centres for education.

Sources:

  • Choomnoon, S (2011). Thailand. In Emerging Challenges and Trends in TVET in the Asia-Pacific Region, S. Majumdar (Ed.). 219-235. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
  • Ministry of Education (2009). The Development and State of the Art of Adult Learning and Education (ALE). National Report of Thailand. Bangkok: Ministry of Education.
  • Nuffic (2012). Thailand Country Module. The Hague: Netherlands organisation for international cooperation in higher education.
  • Office of Vocational Education Commission (2014). Management of Vocational Education in the Colleges. Accessed: 10 November 2014.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Thailand. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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3. Governance and financing

Governance

The Ministry of Education (MoE) is responsible for formal TVET programmes in Thailand. Specifically the Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC) – under the MoE – is the main agency responsible for the administration of the TVET system in Thailand and its roles include, amongst others:

  • Providing recommendations for developing TVET related policies, developmental plans and standards and curriculum;
  • Coordinating the improvement of TVET programmes and professional standards;
  • Developing TVET teachers and personnel; and
  • Coordinating the actions of government and the private sector in the development of the TVET system.
The OVEC is also responsible for 416 vocational colleges around Thailand. These colleges are organised in multi-campus TVET institutions, organised in all the provinces. The size of a college varies between 300 – 6000 students, depending on the location and programmes offered. Each multi-campus TVET institution has its own administration and is administered by a council composed of enterprise representatives and other stakeholders.

The private sector also plays an important role in the provision of dual system and apprenticeship programmes. Entrepreneurs, state enterprises and government agencies need to enter into an agreement with vocational institutes under the OVEC, and establish the curriculum and evaluation methods before students are allowed to attend practical courses.

Non-formal TVET programmes are the responsibility of the Office of Non-Formal and Informal Education (ONIE). Particularly the ONIE – under the MoE – is responsible for: (1) giving recommendations concerning TVET related policies, plans and strategies; (2) promoting collaboration between stakeholders; and (3) monitoring and evaluating non-formal TVET programmes.

Financing

The TVET system in Thailand is mainly financed by the Ministry of Education (MoE). Specifically the Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC) defines the criteria and allocation of the budget and other necessary resources.

Sources:

  • Choomnoon, S (2011). Thailand. In Emerging Challenges and Trends in TVET in the Asia-Pacific Region, S. Majumdar (Ed.). 219-235. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
  • Ministry of Education (2009). The Development and State of the Art of Adult Learning and Education (ALE). National Report of Thailand. Bangkok: Ministry of Education.
  • Office of Vocational Education Commission (2014). Vision and Mission. Accessed: 10 November 2014.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Thailand. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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4. TVET teachers and trainers

TVET teachers and trainers are required to attend TVET teacher training programmes at the tertiary education level. Specifically, a two year programme organised by the Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC) is provided in teacher colleges. In order to be admitted to the programme, students are required to have completed upper secondary education. At the end of the programme, graduates receive a Higher Diploma in Technical Education, equivalent to a Bachelor’s Degree.

Sources:

  • Nuffic (2012). Thailand Country Module. The Hague: Netherlands organisation for international cooperation in higher education.
  • Office of Vocational Education Commission (2014). Management of Vocational Education in the Colleges. Accessed: 10 November 2014.


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5. Qualifications and qualifications frameworks

Secondary vocational education

Programme Duration Qualification
Upper secondary vocational programme 3 years Certificate in Vocational Education
Dual system and apprenticeship 3 years Certificate in Vocational Education
Short courses accumulation 3-5 years Certificate in Vocational Education: Credit Accumulation System
Post-secondary vocational education

Programme Duration Qualification
TVET Colleges 2 years Higher Diploma in Technical Education
Undergraduate 2 years (after the Higher Diploma in Technical Education) Bachelor’s Degree
Quality assurance

TVET programmes are in line with the goals set out in the National Economic and Social Development Plan and the National Education Plan (2002-2016). Specifically, the quality of TVET programmes is monitored by the Quality Assurance and Education Standards Section of the Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC).

Based on the Vocational Education Act, and in line with the Ministry of Education’s Announcement on system, criteria, and implementation on educational quality (2010) and related TVET standards set by OVEC and MoE, TVET colleges are encouraged to set their own TVET College Standards according to official regulations. Yearly Self-Assessment Reports (SAR) must be submitted to OVEC in order to help promote the quality of TVET programmes. For implementation, TVET Colleges are expected to be assessed by OVEC at least once every three years (internal quality assessment). For external quality assessment, the Office of the National Education Standards and Quality Assurance (NESQA) is responsible for implementing the assessment once every four years.

Sources:

  • Ministry of Education (2009). The Development and State of the Art of Adult Learning and Education (ALE). National Report of Thailand. Bangkok: Ministry of Education.
  • Nuffic (2012). Thailand Country Module. The Hague: Netherlands organisation for international cooperation in higher education.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Thailand. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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6. Current and ongoing reforms, projects, and challenges

Current reforms and major projects

The Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC) plays an important role in the development of policies and strategies for producing and developing human resources for the period of 2012-2026. Specifically the OVEC aims to:

  • Increase the number of students enrolled in TVET. This entails: (1) increasing the number of students graduating from TVET programmes; (2) reducing the dropout rate; (3) using a quota system to enrol students; and (4) informing parents and teachers about the TVET system;
  • Improve the access to TVET programmes by: (1) reorganising TVET institutions in multi-campus institutes; (2) establishing vocational colleges in more districts; (3) expanding TVET programmes to other target groups, such as people with disabilities, the elderly and women; and (4) encouraging companies to participate in the provision of TVET;
  • Enhance the quality of TVET programmes by developing project-based learning teaching methods and assessment and using Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in TVET programmes; and
  • Increase the efficiency of TVET administration by: (1) applying ICT In administration; (2) using strategic performance based budgeting and allocating the budget on the basis of necessity, equality and policies; and (3) cooperating with other neighbouring and international countries.
The 11th National Economic and Social Development Plan (2012-2016) emphasises the importance of TVET to develop a qualified labour force and sets a number of TVET-related objectives, including to:

•*Upgrade vocational qualification standards in order to develop skills which are relevant to the labour market;

  • Expand the amount of specialisations taught in vocational education;
  • Create a national labour database which covers supply and demand, educational attainments and vocational qualifications; and
  • Encourage regional universities and vocational institutions to participate in community development.
Challenges

According to Choomnoon (2011), the TVET system in Thailand faces a number of challenges, including to:

  • Improve the quality and variety of TVET programmes offered in the rural colleges;
  • Develop stronger cooperation with the private sector in providing TVET programmes;
  • Enhance the quality of TVET programmes by moving away from specialisations and ensuring that TVET students are also competent in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), English proficiency, and other relevant skills;
  • Improve the quality of the equipment and TVET teachers by organising workshops and staff development programmes; and
  • Improve the governance and accountability structures of the TVET institutions.
Sources:

  • Choomnoon, S (2011). Thailand. In Emerging Challenges and Trends in TVET in the Asia-Pacific Region, S. Majumdar (Ed.). 219-235. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
  • National Economic and Social Development Board (2011). The Eleventh National Economic and Social Development Plan. Bangkok: National Economic and Social Development Board.
  • Office of Vocational Education Commission (2014). Management of Vocational Education in the Colleges. Accessed: 10 November 2014.


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7. Statistical information(*)

Population (Million)


2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

66.69
66.90
67.16
67.45
67.73
67.96
Average yearly population growth rate 2010 - 2015

+0.38 %


For comparison:
Global average yearly population growth rate 2005-2010: 1.17%
33.75 32.94
female male  
33.87 33.03
female male  
34.02 33.15
female male  
34.18 33.28
female male  
34.33 33.40
female male  
34.47 33.50
female male  

50.61 %

50.63 %

50.65 %

50.67 %

50.69 %

50.71 %






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8. Links to UNEVOC centres and TVET institutions

UNEVOC Centres

TVET Institutions


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9. References, bibliography, abbreviations

References

Abbreviations

  • ICT - Information and Communications Technology
  • MoE - Ministry of Education
  • NQF - National Qualifications Framework
  • ONIE - Office of Non-Formal and Informal Education
  • OVEC - Office of the Vocational Education Commission




    Published by: UNESCO-UNEVOC
    Publication Date: 2015-10-26
    Validated by: Office of Vocational Education Commission (OVEC)



page date 2014-12-19

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