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Students satisfied with education but aren’t finding jobs, new uni rankings reveal

Yasmin Khushairi

Fri Oct 06 2017


Degrees aren’t translating into graduate jobs, according to new 2018 rankings provided by The Good Universities Guide.

Australian universities were ranked by The Good Universities Guide across multiple categories including staff qualification, learner engagement, graduate salary, student support, learning resources and more.

While results in student experience categories appeared strong, employment categories appeared less than favourable for many of Australia’s major universities. 

Charles Sturt University ranked the highest in full-time employment: 83.9 per cent of graduates found full-time positions four months after completing their course. University of Southern Queensland followed with 82.5 per cent of its graduating finding jobs after finishing their studies while universities such as Victoria University and Flinders University were among the lowest ranked universities in terms of graduates finding a job. 

Central Queensland University was the only Victorian-based university to receive a five-star rating in the full-time employment category, and scored 80.6 per cent. The rest of the ratings for Victoria are as follow (based on graduates successfully finding a job four months after completion of their course): 

  1. Central Queensland University (80.6 per cent)
  2. Australian Catholic University (73 per cent)
  3. Monash University (70.1 per cent)
  4. Federation University Australia (69.8 per cent)
  5. Deakin University (67.3 per cent)
  6. La Trobe University (66.2 per cent)
  7. Swinburne University (65.4 per cent)
  8. The University of Melbourne (63.6 per cent)
  9. RMIT University (62.1 per cent)
  10. Victoria University (62.1 per cent)

A closer look at each university…

While scores above reflect graduate employment after university, universities were assessed on other criteria as well, including overall education experience. 

Federation University Australia: While the university did well on a national level, ranking above universities like Melbourne in overall quality, where they particularly excelled was in the area of student support (78.6 per cent) and skills development (82.5 per cent). Their graduate salary met the national average of $56,000.

Australian Catholic University: ACU made quite an impression in the rankings, especially in overall quality where they ranked nationally at the 9th position. ACU was the top Victorian university for learner engagement (67.5 per cent), just one spot shy from the top five nationally. The average salary for ACU graduates was $57,000 and full-time employment, putting it just above the national average. 

Deakin University: Even though they took the top spot as the best university in Victoria overall, they didn’t score so well in other categories. Deakin fell below the national average percentage in graduate salary ($55,000) and learner engagement (62.6 per cent). However, they acquired ‘five-star’ ratings in learning resources (92.2 per cent), teaching quality (83.6 per cent) and skills development (82.7 per cent).

Swinburne University of Technology: Swinburne scored averagely despite ranking in the top 15 in overall educational experience nationally. Swinburne’s full-time employment rate (65.4 per cent) fell below the national average of 69.5 per cent along with universities like RMIT (62.1 per cent) and La Trobe (66.2 per cent).

University of Melbourne: Arguably the most prestigious university in Victoria, Melbourne placed just two spots below the national average for overall experience. Melbourne was also ranked the lowest in student support (63.5 per cent) on a national scale and third lowest in graduate salary ($53,500). 

Central Queensland University: Though this institution did just average in overall experience (78.4 per cent) and most other categories, Central Queensland was the best Victorian University for graduates finding full-time employment. Graduate salaries were just as high ($60,000) leaving other Victorian universities far behind. In fact, they’re the only university in Victoria to receive impressive five-star ratings in both categories.

RMIT University: RMIT scored somewhat low in almost every category, especially in graduate salary rate ($50,000) which placed the institute all the way at the bottom nationally. The areas where they really excelled in, however, were staff qualification (first in Victoria with 95 per cent) and learner engagement (67 per cent).

Monash University: Monash ranked very favourably overall, scoring above the national average in some areas including staff qualification (five-star rating), student support (72.6 per cent) and full-time employment rate (70.1 per cent) but not so much in graduate salary rate ($55,000) and learner engagement (63.4 per cent).

La Trobe University: Although La Trobe ranked last nationally in overall experience, the university did make top three in learner engagement (66.4 per cent) in Victoria. Unfortunately, it fell below the national average in almost every other area, failing to receive a five-star rating across all categories.

Victoria University: Although Victoria University failed to receive five-star ratings across all categories, it did manage to score above the national average in learner engagement (64.6 per cent) and was just one spot shy of meeting the national average in graduate salary ($55,400). This is impressive when you consider it placed dead last for full-time employment in the state of Victoria.

For more information and details of Australia’s university rankings, check out The Good Universities Guide website.