The Australian Centre for Student Equity and Success acknowledges Indigenous peoples as the Traditional Owners of the lands on which our campuses are situated. With a history spanning 60,000 years as the original educators, Indigenous peoples hold a unique place in Australia. We recognise the importance of their knowledge and culture, and reflect the principles of participation, equity, and cultural respect in our work. We pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future, and consider it an honour to learn from our Indigenous colleagues, partners, and friends.

You are reading: Briefing Note: Student Equity Performance in Australian Higher Education: 2007 to 2014

Briefing Note written by Paul Koshy and Richard Seymour, National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education (NCSEHE)


This NCSEHE Briefing Note provides an update on domestic undergraduate student enrolment and equity outcomes from 2007 to 2014, following Koshy and Seymour (2014). It focuses on undergraduate outcomes for Table A providers, given policy changes in recent years to Australian undergraduate education that affect them, including the full deregulation of undergraduate places in 2012 under the Demand Driven System (DDS). It reports on the number of domestic undergraduates between 2007 and 2014 in the 38 ‘Table A providers’ in Australian higher education and enrolments in seven equity groups:

  • Low Socio-Economic Status (‘low SES’) students;
  • Students with Disability;
  • Indigenous Students;
  • Women in Non-Traditional Areas;
  • Regional Students;
  • Remote Students; and
  • Non-English Speaking Background (NESB) students (also referred to as ‘Culturally and Linguistically Diverse’ or ‘CALD’ students).

In each equity group, results are reported for the national system in total, by institutional groupings, by state and territory, and by regional or metropolitan status, for each year. All reporting is for domestic undergraduates in each given year. The institutional groupings in 2014 were as follows:

  • The Group of Eight: Australian National University (ANU), Melbourne, Monash, Sydney, New South Wales (UNSW), Queensland (UQ), Western Australia (UWA), and Adelaide.
  • The Australian Technology Network (ATN): Curtin University, University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), RMIT University (RMIT), Queensland University of Technology (QUT), and University of South Australia (UniSA).
  • The Innovative Research Universities (IRU): Murdoch, Flinders, Griffith, James Cook (JCU), La Trobe, Charles Darwin University (CDU) and Newcastle. (Note: Newcastle left the IRU in December 2014).
  • Regional Universities Network: Southern Cross, New England (UNE), Federation, Sunshine Coast (SCU), CQUniversity Australia (CQU), and Southern Queensland (USQ).
  • The Unaligned Universities: Other Table A providers) – Macquarie, Wollongong, Deakin, Charles Sturt (CSU), Tasmania, Australian Catholic University (ACU), Canberra, Edith Cowan University (ECU), Swinburne, Victoria, Western Sydney (WSU) and The Batchelor Institute (Batchelor)

(Note: Batchelor and CDU entered into a collaborative partnership in 2012 which has seen CDU take delivery of most undergraduate programs.)

In addition, an analysis is reported for universities on the basis of their campus location and infrastructure, as per Koshy and Phillimore (2013):

  • Regionally Headquartered: Institutions with a major regional – CSU, Southern Cross, UNE, Federation, CQU, JCU, USQ, Tasmania, CDU, and Batchelor.
  • Metropolitan Institutions with Regional Campuses: Institutions with one or more regional campus – Newcastle, Sydney, Wollongong, Deakin, La Trobe, Monash, RMIT, Melbourne, QUT, UQ, SCU, Curtin, ECU, Murdoch, UWA, Flinders, Adelaide, UniSA, and ACU.
  • No Regional Campuses: Metropolitan Institutions with no regional campus: ANU, Sydney, UNSW, Griffith, Macquarie, Canberra, Swinburne, Victoria and WSU.

All student data reported or derived for the purposes of this document are sourced from Students: Selected Higher Education Statistics 2014 (Appendix 2: Equity Data), published by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training (2015).

Continue reading: Student Equity Performance in Australian Higher Education – 2007 to 2014 (223Kb)

Koshy, P. and Seymour, R. (2015). Student Equity Performance in Australian Higher Education: 2007 to 2014. National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education (NCSEHE), Perth: Curtin University.
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