Australia spends a smaller share of its national income on public investment in tertiary education than countries such as Estonia, Turkey and Latvia, according to the OECD’s latest Education at a Glance report. The report ranks Australia’s public investment in tertiary education among the bottom four of the world’s advanced economies – 30th out of 34 nations at 0.7% of gross domestic product or GDP, or about 40% below the OECD average of 1.1%. “The only OECD countries with lower recorded levels of public investment than Australia are Japan, Luxembourg and the UK,” said National Tertiary Education Union President Jeannie Rea. “Even the USA has a higher level of public investment in tertiary education, which at 0.9% of GDP is almost 25% higher than Australia.”
Rea said that in contrast to the low levels of public investment, Australia’s level of private investment in tertiary education was 1.1% of GDP – more than twice the OECD average of 0.5%.
“The high private contribution Australian students make to the cost of their tertiary education is reflected in the high level of tuition fees our students are required to pay, which again the report shows to be among the highest in the OECD,” she said. “Australia’s private investment in tertiary education now sits at 1.1% of GDP – more than twice the OECD average,” Robinson said. “The data comes as legislation to impose a further AU$2.8 billion [US$2.2 billion] in cuts to universities and their students – on top of another nearly AU$4 billion in cuts since 2011 – is being debated in parliament.” (Fonte: G. Maslen, www.universityworldnews.com 17-09-17)