National Report on Schooling in Australia 2011

Senior schooling and youth transitions

6.3 Attainment

The attainment key performance measures (KPMs) specified in the Measurement Framework for Schooling in Australia 2010 report the level of educational qualification achieved by young Australians.
KPM 8(a) (Table 6.6) reports the proportion of 20 to 24-year-olds who have completed Year 12 or equivalent¹ or attained an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) Certificate II or above.

Key Performance Measure 8(a)

Proportion of the 20 to 24-year-old population having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate II or above

Table 6.6 Proportion of the 20 to 24-year-old population having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate II or above,
Australia, 2007
11

Year

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

%

%

%

%

%

Australia

83.5

84.2

84.5

85.6

84.1

CI±

1.1

1.2

1.6

1.3

1.3


Notes:

CI = Confidence Interval

The percentages reported in this table include 95 per cent confidence intervals. The confidence interval figure relates to the upper and lower limits of a confidence range. A 95 per cent interval means there is that chance that a value will be within the range, e.g. Proportion = 90 per cent; 95 per cent CI = 2.0. Hence there is a 95 per cent chance that the value will be within the range of 88 per cent (90.0 - 2.0) and 92 per cent (90.0 + 2.0).

Source: ABS, Cat. No. 6227.0, Education and Work, May 2011

See also Part 9: Additional Statistics Table 29

From 2007 to 2010 the proportion of 20 to 24-year-olds who had attained Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate II or above rose from 83.5 per cent to 85.6 per cent. The COAG target for this measure is that, by 2015, 90 per cent of 20 to 24-year-olds will have attained at least one of these qualifications. On the basis of the 2007–10 data, this target appeared to be achievable at the national level. The fall in this measure to 84.1 per cent in 2011 is not statistically significant but does raise doubts as to the continuation of the trend. However, increased participation in education and training by 15 to 19-year-olds in 2011, reported in Part 6.2: Senior schooling and transitions – participation, is likely to flow on to attainment of Year 12 or equivalent or Certificate II by 2015.

KPM 8(b) (Table 6.7) indicates the proportion of 20 to 24-year-olds who have completed Year 12 or equivalent or attained an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) Certificate III or above.

Key Performance Measure 8(b)

Proportion of the 20 to 24-year-old population having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate III or above

Table 6.7 Proportion of the 20 to 24-year-old population having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate III or above,
Australia, 2007–11

Year

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

%

%

%

%

%

Australia

82.3

83.2

83.5

84.5

82.7

CI±

1.2

1.3

1.7

1.5

1.3


Notes:

CI = Confidence Interval

The percentages reported in this table include 95 per cent confidence intervals. The confidence interval figure relates to the upper and lower limits of a confidence range. A 95 per cent interval means there is that chance that a value will be within the range, e.g. Proportion = 90 per cent; 95 per cent CI = 2.0. Hence there is a 95 per cent chance that the value will be within the range of 88 per cent (90.0 - 2.0) and 92 per cent (90.0 + 2.0).

Source: ABS, Cat. No. 6227.0, Education and Work, May 2011

See also Part 9: Additional Statistics Table 30

The COAG target for this measure is that, by 2020, 90 per cent of 20 to 24-year-olds will have attained at least one of these qualifications. Based on the trend 2007–10 this target also appeared to be achievable at the national level. The apparent fall in 2011 raises some doubts but, like KPM 8(a), this measure is likely to move upwards as increased participation in education and training by 15 and 16-year-olds flows on to their levels of attainment in later years.
KPM 8(c) (Table 6.8) indicates the proportion of 25 to 29-year-olds who have attained an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) Certificate III or above. This measure reflects post-secondary qualifications only and excludes those who successfully completed Year 12 but have not, since leaving school, successfully completed tertiary qualifications at AQF Certificate III or above.

Key Performance Measure 8(c)

The proportion of 25 to 29-year-olds who have gained a post-secondary qualification at AQF Certificate III or above

Table 6.8 Proportion of 25 to 29-year-olds who have gained a post-secondary qualification at AQF Certificate III or above,
Australia, 2007–11

Year

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

%

%

%

%

%

Australia

59.0

60.0

63.0

62.7

63.5

CI±

1.5

1.6

2.0

1.8

1.8


Notes:

CI = Confidence Interval

The percentages reported in this table include 95 per cent confidence intervals. The confidence interval figure relates to the upper and lower limits of a confidence range. A 95 per cent interval means there is that chance that a value will be within the range, e.g. Proportion = 90 per cent; 95 per cent CI = 2.0. Hence there is a 95 per cent chance that the value will be within the range of 88 per cent (90.0 - 2.0) and 92 per cent (90.0 + 2.0).

Source: ABS, Cat. No. 6227.0, Education and Work, May 2011

See also Part 9: Additional Statistics Table 31

In the period 2007–11 the proportion of 25 to 29-year-olds who had attained a post-secondary qualification at AQF Certificate III or above rose by 4.5 percentage points.

Key Performance Measures 8(a), 8(b) and 8(c)

Figure 6.2 Proportions of 20 to 24-year-olds having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate II or above; 20 to 24-year-olds having attained at least Year 12 or equivalent or AQF Certificate III or above; 25 to 29-year-olds who have gained a post-secondary qualification at AQF Certificate III or above, Australia, 2007–11 (%)

Figure 6.2 Proportions of 20 to 24-year-olds havin

Source: ABS, Cat. No. 6227.0, Education and Work, May 2011

Figure 6.2 depicts the movement in all three attainment measures from 2007 to 2011.
It is important to note that the attainment KPMs, 8(a) and 8(b), refer to the completion of Year 12 or equivalent or an AQF VET Certificate. This does not imply equivalence between the award of a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education on the completion of Year 12 and either AQF Certificate II or AQF Certificate III. The Senior Secondary Certificate of Education is an AQF qualification but it has not been allocated to a particular level within the AQF. The AQF does not specify equivalence between Senior Secondary Certificates and other AQF qualifications.²
¹ ‘Year 12 or equivalent’ may include AQF Senior Secondary Certificates of Education issued by Australasian Curriculum, Assessment and Certification Authorities in each State and Territory and recognised tertiary preparation qualifications such as the International Baccalaureate.
² The duration of full-time study typically required to attain an AQF Certificate II is much less than that typically required to attain a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. For example, it is possible for VET in Schools students to complete several Certificate II qualifications as part of their Senior Secondary Certificate.