The rate of attainment of higher level qualifications (certificates III and above) has increased nationally and in all regions of Australia since 2001. This article looks at three different regions (Brisbane - North; Sydney - City and Inner South; and South East Tasmania) that have experienced high growth in attainment.
Analysis of how the level of educational attainment in regional populations changed since 2001 is important for understanding changing human capital and skills available in regions. The availability of skilled workers is a key issue addressed in regional development policy and planning (Endnote 1) and education has been recognised as an increasingly important aspect of human capital (Research Paper: Measuring Human Capital Flows for Australia: A Lifetime Labour Income Approach (cat. no. 1351.0.55.023)).
People aged 20 to 64 years are the focus of this article, as they are expected to have finished their secondary school education and are within the age group generally considered to be of working age (15 to 64 years). Statistical Areas Level 4 (SA4s) are the regions used for analysis as they represent labour market regions (see Data Sources and Definitions).
Higher level qualifications as discussed in this article include certificates level III and above, as defined in the Australian Standard Classification of Education (ASCED), 2001 (cat. no. 1272.0).
This article is the second in the Perspectives on Regional Australia series which analyses higher level qualifications in regions using Census data. The first article, Perspectives on Regional Australia: Non-school Qualifications in Regions, 2011 (cat. no. 1380.0.55.011), described regional variation in the attainment of higher level qualifications in 2011.
Regional data on attainment of higher level qualifications used in this article are provided in the datacube available via the Downloads tab.