NUMBER OF PERSONS
The number of persons with an Advanced diploma, Bachelor degree or higher degree (selected qualifications) and/or employed as Specialist managers or Professionals (selected occupations) was 3,054,000 persons in August 2001. This represented 21% of the population aged 15 years and over, up from 15% and 18% in 1991 and 1996 respectively.
The percentage with selected qualifications increased from 11% in 1991 and 14% in 1996 to 16% in 2001, while the percentage in selected occupations increased from 10% in 1991 and 12% in 1996 to 13% in 2001. The percentage who were both in a selected occupation and had selected qualifications increased from 6% in 1991 and 7% in 1996 to 8% in 2001.
Of the persons with selected qualifications and/or employed in selected occupations in August 2001, 321,000 (11%) were persons born overseas who had not taken out Australian citizenship, with the main countries of origin being England (64,000), New Zealand (42,000) and India (19,000).
By state and territory, persons with selected qualifications and/or in selected occupations ranged from 16% to 22% of the population in 2001, with the exception of the Australian Capital Territory where the percentage was 36%. The percentage was much higher in Major Urban centres (24%) than in Other Urban (14%) and Other areas (15%).
AGE AND SEX
Of the persons with selected qualifications and/or in selected occupations in 2001, 34% were aged 15-34 years, 49% were aged 35-54 years and 17% were aged 55 years and over.
Females accounted for 51% of the persons with selected qualifications and/or in selected occupations in 2001, up from 50% in 1996, while their share of the population aged 15 years and over was 51% in both 2001 and 1996. The percentage of persons in selected occupations that were female increased from 47% in 1996 to 49% in 2001, while the percentage of persons with selected qualifications that were female remained stable at 54%.
Of persons with selected qualifications in 2001, 3% had Doctoral degrees, 8% Master degrees, 8% Graduate diplomas, 1% Graduate certificates, 60% Bachelor degrees and 21% Advanced diplomas. The most popular fields of study were Management and commerce, Education and Health, accounting for 18%, 18% and 17% respectively.
Persons in selected occupations in 2001 were most commonly employed in the Education, Property and business services and Health and community services industry groups, accounting for 22%, 20% and 19% of these persons respectively. Similarly, the industries with the highest percentage of their employment in selected occupations were Education (70%), Health and community services (44%) and Property and business services (40%). Of the persons in selected occupations in 2001, 67% had selected qualifications; 62% of the males and 72% of the females.
Persons with selected qualifications and employed in selected occupations had an annual income of $51,000 on average in 2001, compared with $39,000 for persons with selected qualifications employed in other occupations and $43,000 for persons in selected occupations without selected qualifications.
Of the persons in selected occupations, Specialist managers and Computing professionals had the highest average annual incomes in 2001 ($57,000 and $56,000 respectively).
LABOUR FORCE STATUS
The unemployment rate for persons with selected qualifications was 3% at August 2001, compared with 8% for persons without selected qualifications. The participation rate (persons in the labour force as a proportion of the population aged 15 years and over) for persons with selected qualifications was 81% at August 2001, compared with 56% for persons without such qualifications.
Approximately 290,000 persons in selected occupations in February 2002 had changed their jobs in the preceding 12 months. Of these, 55,000 (19%) were inflows from other occupations while the remainder were internal flows (i.e. were already employed in selected occupations). On average, persons in selected occupations had been in their current job for longer than persons in other occupations.
In 2001-02, 79,179 persons with stated selected occupations arrived in Australia permanently or long-term, while 60,392 persons with stated selected occupations departed permanently or long-term, resulting in a net gain of 18,787 persons.
The number of Indigenous persons with selected qualifications and/or in selected occupations in 2001 was 17,874 representing 7% of Indigenous Australians aged 15 years and over.
Persons with selected qualifications and/or in selected occupations as a percentage of Australia's population ranked fifth in comparison with ten European countries for which similar data are available. Australia was ranked below Finland, Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands but above Ireland, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Portugal.
This page last updated 6 April 2009