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Tertiary results show more degrees, higher earnings

Hon Steven Joyce
Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills & Employment
6 December 2012 Media Statement
Tertiary results show more degrees, higher earnings

People with degrees earn substantially more than those with no qualifications, the annual report on the performance of the tertiary education system shows.

Profile & Trends 2011, released today by the Education Ministry, shows that in 2011 people with a bachelor’s or higher qualification earned 65 per cent more than those without a qualification – up from 63 per cent in 2010.

The number of people aged 15 years and over with a bachelor’s degree or higher qualification was 17 per cent in 2011 compared to 11 per cent in 2001.

Other findings include:
• For the first time the majority of New Zealanders have a degree or other tertiary qualification (52 per cent)
• Women continue to outnumber men in holding a bachelor’s or higher degree while men are more likely than women to have certificates and diplomas
• The number of 16 and 17 year-olds in the Youth Guarantee scheme grew to 3590 in 2011 and the number of places will grow to 7,500 in 2012. In 2012 Youth Guarantee and Youth Training were combined, extending the range of course and study options for students
• Enrolments in adult and community education in schools rose by 16 per cent.

Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce says the results are encouraging.

“The Government is committed to increasing achievement in the tertiary sector, improving quality and better matching education to the skills needed in the New Zealand economy. Having more people with a tertiary qualification – the best result ever – shows we are making good progress,” Mr Joyce says.

“The Government has set a target of 55 per cent of 25 to 34 year olds holding a qualification at level 4 or above by 2017. With the achievement rate increasing to 52 per cent in 2011 we are delivering on our commitment to strengthen and up-skill the New Zealand labour market.”

The report is available at:

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