Pasifika tertiary education students in 2006

Publication Details

This is edition one in an annual series on Pasifika tertiary education students. There is an associated set of tables available on the Pasifika Tertiary Education statistics page on Education Counts.

This fact sheet presents information on the qualifications Pasifika students are taking, where they are studying, field of study, student allowances and loans and other important characteristics of Pasifika students. Also included is information on Pasifika employees in industry training and their 2006 income distribution.

Author(s): Mieke Wensvoort, Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis and Reporting, Ministry of Education

Date Published: February 2008

Executive Summary

Twelve percent of Pasifika peoples aged 15-years-and-over participated in formal tertiary study in 2006.  In comparison, the participation rates in 2006 were 13 percent for Europeans, 18 percent for Māori and 15 percent for Asians.  Five years earlier, the Pasifika age-standardised participation rate was considerably lower at 8.9 percent.

In 2006, the Pasifika participation rate in bachelors-level study was 3.0 percent.   In comparison, 3.8 percent of Europeans, 5.7 percent of Asians and 3.0 percent of Māori participated in bachelors-level study in 2006.  More Pasifika students enrolled in bachelors-level study in 2006, while study at this level for all domestic students has remained comparatively stable from 2004 to 2006.  Additionally, the percentage of Pasifika students aged under-25-years and studying at qualification level 4 and above, increased from 58 percent in 2005 to 63 percent in 2006.

New Zealand's Pasifika population with a tertiary qualification has doubled over the last 10 years to 19 percent.  In comparison, 40 percent of the total population held a tertiary qualification in 2006.

Forty-five percent of students who enrolled in 2006 were Samoan, 21 percent Cook Islander, 16 percent Tongan, 11 percent Fijian, 7 percent Niuean and 3 percent Tokelauan.
Over the last five years, 6 out of 10 Pasifika students were women.  Fifty-eight percent of total students were women during this period.

While qualification completions fell overall by 16 percent in 2006, Pasifika women completed 5.6 percent more qualifications in 2005 than in 2006, while Pasifika males completed only slightly fewer qualifications in 2006 than in 2005 (down 0.4 percent).

Almost one in three Pasifika students studied in the field of management and commerce, compared to one in four for all domestic students.  Pasifika enrolments were one to two percentage points lower than for all domestic students in the fields of engineering, health and natural and physical sciences.

Pasifika student allowances recipients increased by 4.4 percent between 2005 and 2006.  In comparison, the total number of allowance recipients increased by 4.6 percent.

The number of Pasifika student loan borrowers increased by 8.0 percent in 2006, compared to an increased of 8.4 percent in the total number of borrowers.

The average amount borrowed by Pasifika from the Student Loan Scheme in 2006 was $6,493.  This was lower than the average amount borrowed by Europeans and Asians.

Twelve percent of Pasifika employees participated in industry training in 2006.  Overall, 8.3 percent of employees in the labour force participated in industry training in 2006.

Pasifika were under-represented in the Modern Apprenticeship Scheme in 2006.  Only 3.0 percent of apprentices were Pasifika in 2006 while 8.9 percent of the population aged 15 to 24 years identified themselves with Pasifika.

Forty-one percent of Pasifika employees with a bachelors or higher qualification earned between $40,001 and $70,000.  This compared to 35 percent of the total population.  On the other hand, 26 percent of all bachelors or higher qualified employees earned more than $70,000 per annum, while the proportion of Pasifika earning more than $70,000 was only 14 percent.

More than 26 percent of Pasifika peoples were not formally qualified or they held low-level tertiary qualifications in 2006 and this was reflected in a considerably higher proportion of Pasifika employees, compared to all employees, earning less than $40,000 per annum.

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