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: A balancing act: supporting students who are parents to succeed in Australian higher education

Written by Lisa Andrewartha1, Dr Elizabeth Knight2, Dr Andrea Simpson1, Hannah Beattie1

The advantages associated with higher education are well documented, however students who are parents face many obstacles to success at this level. Juggling caring responsibilities alongside study requirements places high demands on the time and energy of student parents, many of whom have additional employment commitments. Financial constraints create an additional barrier to success, with groups at particular risk of disadvantage including young parents, single parents, and parents from low socio-economic backgrounds. Given these challenges, the traditional nature of higher education study may not adequately accommodate the specific circumstances of student parents. Improved processes and support mechanisms could encourage more parents through higher education as a pathway to building knowledge, improving employment prospects, and gaining independence.

Read the full report here: A balancing act: supporting students who are parents to succeed in Australian higher education.


1La Trobe University

2Victoria University