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Prestige matters….

 Grattan Institute      |      13 October 2014

….but courses matter more

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Bachelor-degree graduates of Australia’s sandstone and technology universities earn about 6% more over a 40-year career than do graduates of Australia’s other universities, a new Grattan Institute report reveals.  The report –  Mapping Australian higher education, 2014-15 –  also shows that course taken has a bigger effect on income than university attended.

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grattan_logoTechnology universities – including RMIT, Curtin University and Queensland University of Technology – are much lower in international university rankings than sandstone universities such as Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. But this does not seem to matter in the Australian labour market.

For graduates with bachelor degrees like commerce or science earning attending a sandstone or technology university is likely to be worth about $200,000 more over their working lives.

However, studying engineering at any university is likely to lead to a higher salary than studying arts at a sandstone university.

Mapping Australian higher education, 2014-15 is the third in an annual Grattan series that puts key facts and analysis about the higher education sector in one report.

It shows that domestic enrolments are growing strongly and in 2014 are likely to exceed a million for the first time. International enrolments are recovering from a downturn and numbered nearly 330,000 in 2013, with China the single largest source of students.

In 2012 the revenues of Australia’s 40 full universities, and about 130 other higher education providers exceeded $26 billion, making higher education a significant industry.

Student debt is also growing: in mid-2013 HELP debtors owed the Commonwealth $30 billion, with $7 billion of that figure likely to be written off as bad debt.

The report shows that overall the higher education sector is in good shape.

See
 Mapping Australian higher education, 2014-15
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