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University graduates with qualifications at the undergraduate and postgraduate level report on outcomes after completing their education.

Explore interactive data and insights on this page:

University graduate outcomes

Compare income, employment status and skill use for women and men with qualifications in STEM fields, non-STEM fields and health fields over different years.


Source: Social Research Centre 2020


Data insights

Skill use

In 2020, the following undergraduates entering the workforce felt their skills weren’t being fully used in their job.

  • Engineering graduates:
    • 14% of full-time employed women and 23% of men
    • 19% of employed women and 29% of men
  • Computing and information systems graduates:
    • One-fifth of full-time employed women (20%) and 25% of men
    • 29% of employed women and 34% of men
  • Science and mathematics graduates:
    • 39% of full-time employed women and a similar percentage of men (38%)
    • Over half of employed women (60%) and men (56%)
  • Agriculture and environmental studies graduates:
    • 31% of full-time employed women and 35% of men
    • 43% of employed women and men
Income

In 2020, women’s median incomes were similar to men’s upon entering the full-time workforce after graduating:

  • Engineering ($70,000, $1,000 more than men)
  • Computing and information systems ($65,000, the same as men)
  • Science and mathematics ($63,000, $2,000 less than men)
  • Agriculture and environmental studies ($60,000, $2,000 less than men)

However, in 2020, women earned less when entering the workforce after completing postgraduate coursework in:

  • Engineering ($93,000, $7,000 less than men)
  • Computing and information systems ($82,000, $19,000 less than men)
  • Science and mathematics ($83,000, $14,000 less than men)
  • Agriculture and environmental studies ($70,000, $23,000 less than men)

These outcomes are markedly different to 2018. The median income for women and men following studies in ‘Computing and information systems’ has widened significantly since 2019. The gap between incomes in ‘Science and mathematics’ and ‘Agriculture and environmental studies’ have also continued to widen since 2018.

Part-time work and under-employment

In 2020, a greater percentage of women than men reported working part-time after graduating with a university undergraduate qualification in ‘Science and mathematics’ (56% of women, 51% of men) and ‘Agriculture and environmental studies’ (42% of women, 26% of men).

However, in ‘Computing and information systems’ 22% of both women and men reported working part-time and in ‘Engineering’ it was a greater proportion of men (15%) than women (12%).

A greater percentage of women who graduated with undergraduate qualifications in the following fields also reported seeking more work hours in 2020:

  • Science and mathematics (28% of women, 26% of men)
  • Agriculture and environmental studies (26% of women, 17% of men)

These results are similar to the previous year.

In 2019 and 2020 in ‘Computing and information services’, a greater proportion of men reported working part-time and seeking more hours, compared to women. In ‘Engineering’ it was the same proportion of women and men in 2019, and greater for men in 2020.

About the data

Graduates of Australian higher education institutions take the Graduate Outcomes Survey approximately 4 months after completing their courses.

The survey provides information on labour market outcomes and graduates’ further study activities. Graduates employed for 35 hours or more per week are defined as fully employed. All employed graduates includes those employed in any capacity at the time of survey.

Read more about our methodology and this data

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