How post-school education helps your work prospects and earnings

The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations recently released its comprehensive annual Australian labour market update; Australian Jobs 2013

Here are some interesting stats about employment and earnings outcomes from education and training:

(A) Unemployment and participation rates

  1. Australians who hold a bachelor degree or higher qualification have the lowest unemployment rate (3.4% in 2011) and the highest labour force participation rate (87.4%).
  2. Those who hold vocational education qualifications at the advanced diploma/diploma or certificate III or IV      level also have relatively low unemployment (4.0% and 4.3% respectively).
  3. The unemployment rates for workers who do not hold post-school qualifications are markedly higher, particularly for those who left school before completing Year 10 (12.2%). Those who left school before the end of Year 10 have the lowest level of labour force participation (45.5%).

 (B) Full time employment for 2011 graduates within 4 months of their course completion

 In the tertiary sector the strongest graduate employment results, by specific discipline were:

  • medicine and pharmacy (both 98.1%, but this figure is influenced by registration year requirements, for which the health sector provides places)
  • mining engineering (93.9%)
  • surveying (93.0%)
  • nursing - initial training (92.2%)
  • civil engineering (90.5%)

 The poorest results were for Creative Arts (58.6% in full time employment) and Physical and Natural Sciences (62.9%).

In the VET Sector (Cert I - IV plus Diplomas) the strongest employment results were:

  • Education (91.1%)
  • Architecture and Building (85.5%)
  • Engineering and Related Technologies (83.9%)
  • Health (83.2%)
  • Agriculture, Environmental and Related (81%)

(C) Earnings

  1. People who did not complete Year 12 generally earn around 21% less than someone whose highest educational attainment is an advanced diploma or diploma, and around 42% less than a university graduate.
  2. In 2012, Graduate Careers Australia's (GCA) figures show the median annual starting salary for bachelor degree graduates aged younger than 25 years and in their first full-time job was $52,000, up by $2,000 from 2011. GCA's analysis states that this was 77.8% of the annual average male earnings ($66,800) at the time of the survey.
  3. The highest earnings for tertiary graduates in 2012 were:
  • Dentistry ($80,000)
  • Optometry ($79,000)
  • Earth Sciences ($73,000)
  • Engineering ($63,000)
  • Medicine ($60,000)

      4. The highest average salaries for VET graduates in 2012 were for:

  • Education ($71,800)
  • Engineering and Related Technologies ($58,500)
  • Natural and Physical Sciences ($57,500)
  • Health ($55,800)
  • Management and Commerce ($55,500)

For those who completed their VET training as part of an apprenticeship or traineeship, the average starting salary was $46,500.

Views: 167

Comment by Ben Robinson on August 23, 2013 at 9:16

Thanks Ross, some very interesting numbers there.

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