Profile & Trends 2016: Tertiary Education Outcomes and Qualification Completions [Part 2 of 6]

Publication Details

This is edition 19 in an annual series on the tertiary education sector.  Tertiary Education Outcomes and Qualification Completions is the second of six reports to be published in the Profile and Trends 2016 series.

The key findings of Tertiary Education Outcomes and Qualification Completions for 2016 were:

  • 24 percent of adults held a bachelors or higher qualification, 16 percent held a level 4 to 6 diploma or certificate and 10 percent of adults held either a level 1 to 3 tertiary certificate, or other post-school qualification, as their highest qualification.
  • 160,000 tertiary education qualifications were completed, 26,300 by international students.
  • People with a bachelors or higher qualification enjoy a substantial earnings premium compared to people without a qualification.  In 2016, the hourly earnings premium was 55 percent and the weekly earnings premium was 161 percent.

Author(s): Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis, Ministry of Education.

Date Published: September 2017

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This report is available as a download (please refer to the 'Downloads' inset box).  For links to related publications/ information that may be of interest please refer to the 'Where to Find Out More' inset box.

Executive Summary

Tertiary Education Outcomes and Qualification Completions is the second of six reports in the Profile & Trends 2016 series.  The reports are being published throughout the year as information comes available.

Tertiary Education Outcomes and Qualification Completions contains data for the year ended December 2016, unless otherwise stated.  The population statistics in this report are from Statistics New Zealand's Household Labour Force Survey and the information on qualification completions is derived from returns provided by government-funded tertiary education organisations to the Ministry of Education and the Tertiary Education Commission.  A list of figures is included at the end of the report.

The report begins with an overview of tertiary education outcomes and qualification completions.  Chapter 2 profiles New Zealanders aged 15 years and over by highest qualification.  The employment advantages and higher earnings of the tertiary qualified are described in chapter 3.  This chapter also includes information on young people not in employment, education or training.  The tertiary education outcomes for young graduates are discussed in chapter 4.

Chapter 5 focuses on the students who completed a tertiary education qualification in 2016.  The latest qualification completion rates are covered in chapter 6 and the course completion rates in chapter 7.

This year's edition of Profile & Trends represents the 19th annual survey of the tertiary education system published by the Ministry of Education.

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