1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2005
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 21/01/2005
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In May 2003, 2.7 million people aged 15-64 years had applied to enrol in a course of study. Of these, 91% had gained a place and were studying (table 10.22).
Between 1998 and 2003 the demand for placements in education increased, as did the number of people being accepted into educational institutions. Although there was a rise in the number of enrolment applications across all age groups, the number of people unable to gain placement in courses was stable (graph 10.23).
Many young people continue in full-time education immediately after completing compulsory schooling, either in post-compulsory schooling or in other forms of education such as VET. In May 2003, 70% of 15-19 year olds were in full-time education (including 51% still at school). Some young people return to full-time study after a period of absence after completing compulsory schooling. At age 20-24 years, 26% were undertaking full-time study (including a small proportion still at school) and 11% were participating in part-time tertiary study (table 10.24).
Many people aged 25 years and over return to study, to upgrade their skills or to gain new skills, and often in conjunction with employment. The education participation rate in May 2003 for people in this age group was higher for those in part-time study (6.2%) than for those in full-time study (2.0%).
Between 1998 and 2003 there was a notable shift in the attendance patterns of tertiary students aged 20-24 years, away from part-time study to full-time study. The number of full-time students in this age group increased by 115,000 compared with a decline in part-time student numbers of 18,000. The number of both full-time and part-time students aged 25-64 years increased noticeably during the five-year period (62,000 and 77,000 respectively). Small increases were also recorded for full-time and part-time students aged 15-19 years (graph 10.25).
Education and work
Graph 10.26 indicates the labour force status of all students aged 15-64 years in May 2003. Some 33% of those studying Year 12 or below were employed and 61% were not in the labour force. In contrast, 65% of those studying for a degree or higher were employed and 30% were not in the labour force.
In May 2003 full-time employment was much higher among students aged 20-24 years who were enrolled in a course of study, than among those aged 15-19 years (24% compared with 7%). In both age groups, students who undertook part-time study were more frequently employed full time than part time (table 10.27).
The 'full-time participation rate' describes the proportion of the population who are either in full-time education, or in full-time work, or in both part-time work and part-time education or training. This helps to identify those young people not currently engaged in full-time educational activity who may have difficulty in fully participating in the labour market. Table 10.27 implies in May 2003, 13% of people aged 15-19 years and 23% of 20-24 year olds faced that difficulty.