What Are Vocational Skills?

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade/CC-BY-2.0

Vocational skills are empirical skills that individuals acquire in a specific area of interest. Vocational skills are more practical than theoretical skills. Individuals learn vocational skills from hands-on experience.

Instruction in vocational skills offers hands-on training in a specific trade or job industry. The training takes place outside the traditional classroom setting. Students are placed in manual labor intern positions that coincide with their vocational career choice. Students are exposed to hands-on activities through first-hand experience, and they acquire classroom knowledge. Training allows individuals to work in their areas of interest while obtaining first-hand knowledge and experience, while possibly earning a paycheck.