2006 – Feedback on the draft Commercialisation Training Scheme (CTS) Guidelines and Conditions of Grant

9 Oct 06

General comments:

Many of our initial concerns arising from the Issues Paper have been taken into account. In particular we are very pleased to note that the CTS is now available for part-time students, and for those not in receipt of an APA. The
breadth of the training has also improved. We remain concerned about how distance education students may be catered for.

Comments on specific items in the draft guidelines:

8.90.1 and 8.95
Some smaller and newer universities are developing their research capacity by prioritising commercialisation and industry links. These institutions (and their students) should not be prevented by their size, research income, and
relative newness from accessing the scheme.

We would not want to see a situation where the wealthier universities are able to offer 6 months training on full scholarship while students at other universities received a minimal amount of training and no income support. We support flexibility in delivery but this should not extend to denying some participants a living allowance. Equitable treatment is incongruent with the provision of living allowances to only some of the participants. Living allowance should be available to all students participating in the CTS. This allowance should be of the same value as the scholarship the student is on or the equivalent of an APA (whichever is greater). This must also be available to students who are studying part-time or by distance.

This item appears to mean that students are being ‘encouraged’ to participate in the CTS early in their course. This may not be the most appropriate time for many students. Further clarification of this item with regard to eligibility criteria is needed. For example if a student applied for the CTS 12 months into their course, under the entitlement provisions of this section it would appear that they are ineligible for CTS funding.