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4228.0 - Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies, Australia, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 09/10/2013   
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LABOUR FORCE STATUS
Employed people were assessed as having higher skills in all three domains than people who were not in the labour force. Among employed people, 61% had literacy skills at Level 3 or above, compared to 40% for people not in the labour force. Of employed people, 51% were assessed as having numeracy skills at Level 3 or above compared to 29% of people not in the labour force. Some 34% of employed people were assessed as having problem solving in technology-rich environments (PSTRE) skills at Level 2 or above compared to 17% of people not in the labour force.

In general, the scores of unemployed people were higher than scores of people not in the labour force but lower than the scores of employed people. Fifty four per cent of the unemployed achieved a literacy score at Level 3 or above, 43% a numeracy score at Level 3 or above, and 27% a PSTRE score at Level 2 or above.

Skills in all three domains were high for people working full time, among whom, 63% were assessed as having literacy skills, and 54% numeracy skills at Level 3 or above, and 34% a PSTRE score at Level 2 or above. For people working part time, 59% scored literacy skills, and 45% numeracy skills, at Level 3 or above, and 32% PSTRE skills at Level 2 or above.

Proportion at each skill level, literacy, numeracy and PSTRE, By labour force status—2011–12
Graph: Proportion at each skill level, literacy, numeracy and PSTRE, By labour force status—2011–12



Full-time employed men and, particularly, full-time employed women had high skill levels. Sixty one per cent of men and 67% of women working full time had attained a literacy score at Level 3 or above. Among unemployed people, 50% of men and 58% of women had achieved literacy scores at Level 3 or above. Forty per cent of men and 39% of women not in the labour force were assessed as having a literacy score at Level 3 or above.

Among full-time workers, 56% of men and 51% of women were assessed as having a numeracy score at Level 3 or above. Of unemployed people, 45% of men and 40% of women had a numeracy score at Level 3 or above, as did 35% of men and 26% of women not in the labour force.

Among the full-time employed, 32% of men and 39% of women had a PSTRE score at Level 2 or above. Twenty two per cent of unemployed men and 33% of unemployed women had a PSTRE score at Level 2 or above, as did 20% of men and 16% of women not in the labour force.

For each age group, employed men and women were generally more likely than men and women who were not employed to have literacy and numeracy scores at Level 3 or above, and PSTRE scores at Level 2 or above. The percentage point difference was lowest amongst the youngest age groups where many people not in employment were studying for a qualification. For example, among men aged 20 to 24 years, 57% of employed and also of not employed men were assessed as having literacy Level 3 or above. In comparison, for men aged 25 to 34 years, 65% of employed men achieved a literacy score at Level 3 or above, compared to 45% of not employed men.

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