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Evidence Matters (Issue 1: February-March 2010)

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Welcome to Evidence Matters – a quick and easy way to keep up-to-date with the latest evidence, research and analysis on Education Counts. Subscribe and receive regular, concise updates about recent publications from any of our topic areas and key publication series.


Remember, all publications can be  borrowed from the library by authorised users, including all Ministry of  Education staff and those listed on the Library's home page.

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Skills, qualifications, experience and the distribution of wages

This paper extends previous work on skills, qualifications and wages to look at the relationship between literacy skills and qualifications to the distribution of wages. It draws on data from the Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) Survey. It shows that people with higher levels of literacy have significantly greater opportunities to earn higher incomes, where they are earning above the median wage.

Author:  David Earle, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  March 2010


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What do international rankings tell us about the performance of New Zealand universities?

This report analysed the data behind the Annual Rankings of World Universities Top 500 and Times Higher Education Supplement Top 200 university rankings to see what they can tell us about the performance of New Zealand universities.

Author:  Dr Warren Smart, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  March 2010


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School leavers’ progression to bachelors-level study

This study looks at the likelihood of people leaving school for bachelors level study. It considered school leavers who had gained the University Entrance standard. The study investigated how the decision to go on to bachelors-level study was affected by the students’ standard of performance in NCEA, their ethnic group and gender, the socio-economic ranking (decile) of the school they attended, and whether or not they progressed directly to tertiary study after leaving school. The study used a method of reporting ethnicity that allowed for comparisons both within and between ethnic groups.

The report finds that those students with higher levels of success in NCEA were significantly more likely to go on to bachelors-level study. The decile of the school attended made no difference to this likelihood for Asian and European students, but Māori and some Pasifika students, with higher levels of academic ability, and who came from lower-decile schools, were significantly less likely to go on to bachelors study than similar students from higher-decile schools.

Author:  Ralf Engler, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  March 2010


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Labour market outcomes of skills and qualifications

This paper looks at the employment and income benefits of literacy skills and qualifications.It draws on data from the Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) survey. The results of the analysis show that the benefit of increased literacy without higher qualifications is limited in the New Zealand labour market. The major benefit comes from improved literacy in combination with gaining a qualification, which can result in greater opportunities to move into higher paid jobs.

Author:  David Earle, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  March 2010


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Non-formal and formal learning – Adults in education

This fact sheet looks at the percentage of adults aged 25 to 64 engaged in some form of study in 2006. In particular, it includes new information on the total rate at which adults participated in non-formal learning. The fact sheet also looks at hours spent in non-formal learning, and whether adults were doing this for work-related or personal reasons, and explores how these differ by gender, age, education level, and labour force status.

Author:  David Scott and Chris Lane, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  March 2010


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Tertiary education, skills and productivity

This paper updates and extends an article that was first published in Profile and Trends 2007 (Ministry of Education, 2008). It provides an overview of the information and literature relating to the link between tertiary education, skills and productivity in New Zealand.

Author:  David Earle, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  February 2010


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Comparing university tuition fees with PBRF performance

This report examines the association between the price of bachelors-level tuition at New Zealand universities with the results of the Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) Quality Evaluation.

Author:  Dr Warren Smart, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  February 2010


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Training Opportunities: Exploring what happens two months later

This paper builds on previous statistical analysis published by the Ministry of Education on Training Opportunities, a programme designed to help people get into the labour force through providing training and foundation skills.

Author:  Paul Mahoney, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting Division [Ministry of Education]
Date Published:  February 2010


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