14 August 2019

The rewards of vocational education need to be better known

Prime Minister Scott Morrison may have declared that ‘TAFE is as good as university’, but Australia is a long way from having policies that support students equitably across the tertiary education system.

12 August 2019

Uni versus TAFE: the gender divide

Students with lower ATARs generally have lower lifetime earnings. But men with lower ATARs could earn more doing a vocational education course than a bachelor degree in their chosen field.

10 April 2019

On higher education, Election 2019 offers voters a real choice

It’s the sharpest policy divide for decades. The Coalition offers flat funding and policy tinkering. Labor promises restored demand-driven funding and a major post-secondary education review.

19 September 2018

Demand-driven funding not perfect, but it’s adaptable

The past five years have not been good for early career graduates in Australia. Professional employment rates and earnings are down in many disciplines. The higher education system’s reaction to these trends shows the strengths and weaknesses of the demand-driven funding system the ­Coalition ended and Labor promises to restore.

16 September 2018

Ad hoc ministerial decision making in education jeopardises private sector competition

Ripples are still spreading from the widely rorted VET FEE-HELP scheme, even though it ended in 2016. Fearing similar scandals in higher education, the government has imposed tough new rules for private higher education providers that risk undermining the alternative they offer to the public universities.

16 September 2018

Good news and bad news for the women of Australia

The good news for the women of Australia is that the gender pay gap is narrowing. The bad news is that the gap between what men and women earn – per hour and over a career – is still there and it’s still big.

11 May 2017

Attrition is a price worth paying for an open university system

Australian policymakers have moved to link funding to student retention. But they must accept that desirable trends don’t all arise in perfect harmony. If we want a more open and accessible higher education system, all other things being equal, one price of that is going to be higher attrition. It should be kept as low as possible, but, ultimately, it is a price worth paying.

3 March 2016

Should we scrap the ATAR? What are the alternative options? Experts comment

The value of the ATAR is being called into question. But is scrapping the ATAR the answer? The Conversation speaks to experts from across the sector to debate how best to select students. Read Andrew Norton’s response.

10 October 2012

Graduate Winners: a report based on the facts

Grattan’s report on charging tertiary students higher fees was criticised for not using OECD data. But the statistics weren’t right for our research. Here’s why.

12 October 2011

The rise of university rankings

Australian universities hope to improve their positions in world university rankings. But if only research output is considered, students may pay the price.