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AUT Business School growth bucks trend

AUT University's Business School undergraduate growth has bucked the national trend.

The university's Bachelor of Business (BBus) has experienced a significant increase in both domestic and international enrolments in 2006. Domestic growth is 15% and international growth is 14% and there are now 3300 students enrolled in the BBus.

The recent statistics are part of a six-year trend for AUT. Ministry of Education data shows between 2000 and 2005 the AUT Business School undergraduate enrolments increased by 103% against an average for all New Zealand business schools of 42%.

The Dean of Business, Professor Des Graydon says the growth is especially pleasing when indications are many other New Zealand business schools are experiencing declines in undergraduate student enrolments.

"Students tell us they choose AUT business degrees because of the small classes which provide an active and challenging learning environment," he says.

"They also appreciate our close links with business and the contact they have with academic staff."

The AUT Business School's postgraduate and MBA numbers are also up. Enrolments on the Master of Business, Master of Professional Business Studies and Bachelor of Business with Honours programmes have increased 40% from this time last year and MBA enrolments are up 35% from the start of 2006.

Associate Dean of postgraduate students, Dr Andy Godfrey says the postgraduate growth is coming from top level professionals as well as transfers from other institutions.

"As many as 80% come from other universities – including a significant number from international universities such as Europe, Australia, South Africa and Asia – and more than 50% come from the work place," he says.

"We're attracting people with excellent professional experience as well as strong academic qualifications. We have chartered accountants, finance and banking experts and tax managers, all from well-known organisations. That's where the growth is."

Dr Godfrey says the people enrolling in postgraduate study want to move on in their careers.

"They're looking at discipline-based postgraduate programmes to enable them to get ahead," he says. "We take it seriously, so they take it seriously."


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