4234.0 - Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, Australia, 2016-17 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 20/12/2017   
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PARTICIPATION IN PERSONAL INTEREST LEARNING

In 2016-17, an estimated 1.1 million Australians (6.1%) participated in structured personal interest learning.
This was a decrease from 2013 (8.4%).
Graph Image for Graph 1 - Participation in personal interest learning by age groups, 2013 and 2016-17(a)(b)(c)

Footnote(s): (a) There were changes in collection methods between the surveys in 2013 and 2016-17. See the Explanatory notes for details. (b) Persons aged 65-74 years permanently not intending to work, and all respondents who were permanently unable to work, were not asked about work-related training and are included as not participating. (c) Data from 2016-17 has been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

Source(s): Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, Australia, 2013 and 2016-17



More women (7.3%) than men (5.0%) participated in personal interest learning. This gender difference was more marked in older age groups.

Graph Image for Graph 2 - Participation in personal interest learning by sex by age groups, 2016-17(a)(b)

Footnote(s): (a) Persons aged 65-74 years permanently not intending to work, and all respondents who were permanently unable to work, were not asked about work-related training and are included as not participating. (b) Data from 2016-17 has been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

Source(s): Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, Australia, 2013 and 2016-17



Those with a postgraduate degree were more than twice as likely to participate in personal interest learning (11.1%) compared to those with a Certificate I and II (4.6%).

Graph Image for Graph 3 - Participation in personal interest learning by non-school qualifications, 2013 and 2016-17(a)(b)(c)(d)

Footnote(s): (a) There were changes in collection methods between the surveys in 2013 and 2016-17. See the Explanatory notes for details. (b) Participation in the 12 months prior to survey; persons aged 15 to 74 years. (c) Persons aged 65-74 years permanently not intending to work, and all respondents who were permanently unable to work, were not asked about work-related training and are included as not participating. (d) Data from 2016-17 has been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

Source(s): Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, Australia, 2013 and 2016-17



The ACT had the highest rate of participation in personal interest learning (10.8%).

Graph Image for Graph 4 - Participation in personal interest learning by sex by state and territories, 2016-17(a)(b)(c)

Footnote(s): (a) Participation in the 12 months prior to survey; persons aged 15 to 74 years. (b) Persons aged 65-74 years permanently not intending to work, and all respondents who were permanently unable to work, were not asked about work-related training and are included as not participating. (c) Data from 2016-17 has been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

Source(s): Work-Related Training and Adult Learning, Australia, 2016-17



Based on the most recent personal interest learning course undertaken in the last 12 months, the main reasons reported by respondents for participating was to learn and improve skills (36.6%) followed by enjoyment or interest (33.8%) and then personal development (25.5%).

Two-thirds (65.5%) of those who participated in personal interest learning incurred costs for their most recent course, with 11.0% incurring costs between $1 and $99, 11.2% between $100 and $199 and 43.3% incurring costs of $200 or more.