The launch of My University

The government’s My University website launched this morning.

Overall, I think it is a good start in giving students more information to help with their higher education choices. There is information by university and field of study on student satisfaction with teaching and generic skills development, attrition rates, employment rates, staff qualifications, student:staff ratios, and other things. The meaning of these numbers is often contested – the methodology section suggests caution on some matters – but overall it is better than general impressions or historical reputation.

Here is an example of how the information is presented, for Macquarie University business.

There is also information on general campus facilities. Here is an example for Murdoch University.

Some suggestions for future versions of the site:

* How to get to the course performance information is not intuitive. ‘Course search’ will provide a list of courses in the field of study of interest, but the comparison tool only gives ATARs and cost. The latter will be useful if fees are deregulated, but under the current system the student contributions will be much the same. To find course performance information, users have to go to ‘university search’, and then choose the field of study. Comparison between universities will be difficult without printing out results for each university.

* For non-university higher education providers (NUHEPs), their courses can be located through ‘course search’ but not ‘university search’. No information on admission requirements or cost was in any of the results from random searches. Nor is there any information on course performance, though some NUHEPs are in the relevant surveys (there may be sample size issues). To get a proper market, we need to include the NUHEPs as fully as possible.

2 thoughts on “The launch of My University

  1. I was just looking at where I work, and some of that data is pretty average. Apparently 41% of students are internationals, but only 4% have a NESB. In my own area, there were apparently 348 applications, yet 394 offers! We must have asked some twice I guess. It also says there were 126 commencing students, which isn’t even close to how many there are (around 300 last time I checked).

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  2. NESB = domestic NESB arrived in last 10 years. Should be dropped.

    Applications = first preference applications, so it is not unusual to have more offers than first preference applications.

    Commencing students = number of students coded to an area as their main field of study. Therefore there could be more first years in the class than there are first years classified to the field of study as a main area of study.

    Clearly plenty of scope for confusion as well as error!

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