3414.0 - Guide to Migrant Statistical Sources, 2011 (Edition 2)  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/03/2011   
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Survey of Education and Work (SEW)


The Survey of Education and Work (SEW) provides information on participation in education, highest year of school completed, level of highest non-school qualification, transition from education to work, current labour force status, and demographic characteristics for the civilian population aged 15–64 years, and persons aged 65-74 years who are in, or marginally attached to, the labour force.

The annual time series produced from the SEW allows for ongoing monitoring and provides a link with the more detailed range of educational indicators available from the irregular Surveys of Education and Training.

Topics covered by the SEW include enrolment in education, attainment, employment, transition and apprenticeships. Data items within these topics are capable of being cross classified with Data Items Relevant to Migrants and Ethnicity.

The SEW is conducted annually in May as part of the Monthly Population Survey, which comprises the Labour Force Survey and, in most months, a supplementary survey topic.

Data on this topic were first collected in 1964, however there have been a number of breaks in the time series since then. Until 1976 the survey was restricted to persons aged 15-24 years. From 1977 to 1980 inclusive the survey was restricted to persons aged 15-25 years. From 1981, the survey was expanded to include persons aged 15-64 years. Data on apprenticeships have been collected since 1983 and educational attainment since 1989. For the first 17 surveys it was titled "Survey of Leavers from Schools, Universities and Other Educational Institutions". Changes in the amount and type of data collected supported a name change in May 1981 to "Transition from Education to Work". Its title changed to the Survey of Education and Work in 2002. From 2009 the survey encompassed persons aged 65-74 years who were in, or marginally attached to, the labour force, and those living in very remote areas that are not part of the Indigenous Community Frame.



  • Country of birth
    • Born in Australia
    • Born overseas
      • Oceania and Antarctica
      • North-West Europe
      • Southern and Eastern Europe
      • North Africa and the Middle East
      • South-East Asia
      • North-East Asia
      • Southern and Central Asia
      • Americas
      • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Year of arrival in Australia


A list of data items collected in the Survey of Education and Work is available in Education and Work, Australia (cat. no. 6227.0).

Full details on scope, geographic coverage, data availability and publications, methodology, classifications and concepts are provided in Explanatory Notes of the publication. For a brief overview, visit the Survey of Education and Work entry in the Directory of Statistical Sources.


The Migrant Data Matrices provide a link to summary data on migrants from the Survey of Education and Work. The data items included in each datacube are not exhaustive, but rather a selection of the data available. Care must be taken in comparing data from different collections presented in the Matrices due to differences in survey methodology, definitions and reference periods.

Additional data are also available in the publication Education and Work, Australia (cat. no. 6227.0).


For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service.

Phone: 1300 135 070
Fax: 1300 135 211
Post: Client Services, ABS, GPO Box 796, Sydney 2001
Email: client.services@abs.gov.au