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Studying in Australia

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hey, I'm a New Zealander and have just started my cooking career, i'm looking for somewhere to study and was told Australian schools may offer a better education than ones in New Zealand. The only ones I have found so far of any significant length are a TAFE course - Diploma of Hospitality Management, and the Le Cordon Bleu school in sydney, this seems to have a good reputation but are you just paying for the name? Is there anyone who has been to either of these schools or knows about them?
post #2 of 13

Regency TAFE in Adelaide. Commercial Cookery.

In my years in Oz I attended "unofficially" prior to residency. It's good and very thorough for the basics.

Le Cordon Bleu is worldwide and it's reputation probably accounts for what they ask for tuition. I know in Australia having a certificate seems to be more important than actually knowing how to cook. I don't have a clue about the curriculum at LCB.

Just my opinion.
LCB is a name. A very fancy expensive 'name'. I made inquiries a couple of years ago and have since been inundated with e-mails and phone calls from them asking me (almost begging) to sign up to attend.

Yes they teach basic cooking to preparing fine dishes. But then so does TAFE.

I personally would choose TAFE because it's less expensive and if you know your way around a kitchen, it will teach you the same aspects of basic cooking: stocks, techniques, etc...I still have my cookery books from TAFE which are equal to any basic cookbooks I've seen elsewhere. (and I look around constantly).

After or during your studies get a job in a kitchen. Any kitchen. Baking, fast food, cafe, ... just get experience.

So what exactly is your spark as far as type of food?

Mine is baking but I'm now doing breakfast and lunch service at present.

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks very much :-), tafe does seem to be the way to go from what i have researched, they have a good campus in adelaide from what it shows on their website. At home I cook a lot of desserts and I also have a strong interest In vegetarian cooking (though not a vegetarian myself). Workwise I have just started on Larder at a gastropub so learning various deserts and salads etc. Sort of tossing up between studying patisserie or general, I think a general education would be best to start with though.
Thanks for your help!
post #4 of 13
Regarding LCB's fancy reputation; I have no practical experience with them but from the research I've done, I've come to the following conclusion: LCB is to a less famous cooking school what a Rolex watch is to a Fossil watch. They both run well, but one has a more famous name and a gilded reputation. The education you get, however, is equal.
"Now and then we had hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be pirates" - Mark Twain
"Now and then we had hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be pirates" - Mark Twain
post #5 of 13
While not all culinary schools are equal, I would definitely lay a heavy emphasis that your chances of success are definitely measured by your drive and dedication, not the prestige or history the school you go to has.

Going to a LCB school and depending on the prestige of the LCB name will not make you the best chef you can be. Bringing the best chef out of you by showing up on time in >>CLEAN<<< uniform every day, putting together your daily "mise en plas" (hope i spelled that right), and doing whatever is in your power to benefit the experience of the guest will make you the best chef you can be. Or at least in my humble opinion it will.
post #6 of 13
i started tafe not long ago. the first year is stocks and soups wich isnt bad, but it gets really good but the 3rd year
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

what course?

furi_chef i started tafe not long ago. the first year is stocks and soups wich isnt bad, but it gets really good but the 3rd year

hey furi_chef, which tafe and which course? i have only been able to find 2 year course, certificate II in hospitality followed by diploma in hospitality management.
post #8 of 13

So many choices

Nznomis, here is the deal ( roughly speaking)
In Australia at TAFE you can study for a certificate 3 Hospitality - commercial cookery (http://www.tafe.qld.gov.au/dds/searc...ins_spec=false)
a certificate 3 Food processing - Retail baking (http://www.tafe.qld.gov.au/dds/searc...ins_spec=false)
or a certificate 3 Hospitality - Patisserie (http://www.tafe.qld.gov.au/dds/searc...ins_spec=false)

I hope these links help.

Basically if you study hospitality you can exit with a chef qualification, and now a patissier qualification has been introduced. In Food processing you exit with a baker/pastrycook trade qualification.
The cookery is self explanatory, the patisserie and baking are more of a grey area, patisserie is more playing with chocolate, sugarwork and some plated desserts. Combined baking is heavier in baking theory and technology, with practical applications in retail baking. Both are good, it just depends what you want.
All courses across Australia are the same regardless of training provider. Because the courses have specified course numbers (example - THH31402) and outcomes, they must meet minimum requirements in course content and hours delivered. This is overseen by industry and government. Therefore in content it doesn't matter who teaches you, but TAFE usually has better resources as they are government funded.
What you have to decide is if you want to do an apprenticeship ( you will need residency) or to study as an international student (you need a student visa). The difference is the timeframe taken to complete the qualification and what you have to pay. Also work placement will be a different issue depending on the path you choose.
My experience is within the system in QLD and Tasmania, but as all courses are alligned it will be similar interstate.
My picks
QLD - Southbank Institute of TAFE (Cookery/Patisserie) and Gold Coast Institute of TAFE (Baking)

Victoria - Box Hill TAFE (Cookery) and William Angliss College (All courses)
Adelaide - Regency College (All courses)
Tasmania - Drysdale College (All courses)
Northern Territory/West Aust/Canberra/NSW - I cannot give a recommendation as I don't know any.
Finally, I must disclose I teach at both Southbank and Gold Coast (Casually) so I am biased, But I have experience in the system. I also work in industry and currently manage 6 Apprentices and trainees.
Any other questions or if you want more information I encourage you to PM me and I will answer your queries or pass the contact details on to you.
Good luck
Leading the global ban on cup and spoon measurements in recipes!
Leading the global ban on cup and spoon measurements in recipes!
post #9 of 13

Which TAFE meets my Criteria


This is Galib from Dhaka Sheraton Hotel, Bangladesh. I completed my Post Graduate Professional Programme in International Hospitality Management from UK. I am a hotel professional and looking to come to Australia for undertaking a two years study in commercial cookery. I am a bit confused whether there is a central information unit for all the TAFEs in Australia who could advice me about the best one as per my requirements.

Well, I prefer any well reputed (reputed for chefs courses and latest kitchen and all other required facilities) TAFE for this that meets the followings:
  • My ideal course should award me with recognized certificates like AQF III and above.
  • And it should involve paid work placement for a reasonable length (at least 6 month, preferably longer)
  • The course fee should be very reasonable
  • Wide availability of cook/chef’s part time jobs around the locality of the institute and dedicated support from the institute to avail such opportunity.
***and of course well reputed (reputed for chefs courses and latest kitchen and all other required facilities) as I said earlier....

Your advice regarding which TAFE institution meets my requirements will be really vital for my decision-making.

post #10 of 13

That is exactly where I am at right now, (except that I am an Australian citizen and so would be a domestic student).

Navigating the various paths to chefdom has been as surprising as having made the decision to actually follow the path in the first place. I know that in France, for example, two years is sufficient for a person to become qualified whereas in Australia, the traditional path is via the apprenticeship system which is a good four years.
I have had good experiences with Metro South TAFE (Qld) and not so good with Southbank TAFE but, ultimately, I find the system a good one.

As a mature aged applicant, I am concerned that employers will not take on someone over 21 and yet I'm not sure whether going to a college for a year will have me sufficiently trained to enable me to run a commercial kitchen (which is eventually what I want to do).

How does the difference in pathway determine how you are placed?

post #11 of 13

Can a year training at college prepare you to run a kitchen, No! You need so much more experience.

Will employers take a mature aged apprentice? ,YES!!!! ****, at the moment any decent kitchen is screaming out for good apprentices and chefs, there is a shortage especially in Queensland where you are, just start knocking on doors!
If you are really ambitious, pick your places and give a "free day" (even 1/2) of your time, it will allow you to get a feel for the place as much as a chance to prove yourself, you will find you'll get a job in no time at all!

Good luck!
Leading the global ban on cup and spoon measurements in recipes!
Leading the global ban on cup and spoon measurements in recipes!
post #12 of 13

So it's a better option being an apprentice? Well with recent feedback being no, no and no, too old, this is heartening to read. I will continue to search. Perhaps all the no's were from crappy kitchens! Yeh....

Oh I am as ambitious in that I'm no longer 21 with loads of time to waste and not about to waste anybody's time including my own so if they're receptive to this then yes, I'll offer.

Thanks heaps.
post #13 of 13

Hello everyone,


This post is really interesting.



I appreciate your post because I want to change my carrer from sales to culinary in order to immigrate to Australia. I have to chose between two culinary schools in Australia. The fisrt option is Le Cordon Bleu, which I am sure that I will have a great experience. The second option is Sydney Institute, a TAFE school (government owned). The price difference between then is $20,000 and in my budget it is a considerable amount.
Finally my question for you is: Does it worth pay much more to study in Le Cordon Bleu? 

Which one did you chose? Le Cordon Bleu or TAFE?

How is TAFE reputaion among Australian chefs?


@felixe the dog @RAS1187 @furi_chef , you guys looks like to be very experince with this issue of culinary schools. Could you please try to answer to me if does it worth pay much more to study in Le Cordon Bleu? 

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