The ranking that matters most is out; the federal government funded Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching, based on a survey of students in Australian higher education. The 2017 year’s results are in-line with 2016, with three small student-intensive institutions again rating highest for the overall undergraduate education they provide. The Melbourne based University of Divinity leads with an overall score of 91.1, followed by the University of Notre Dame Australia on 91 and Bond U at 90.5. The all-university satisfaction score is 78.5.
Universities rating above 80 are: ACU (80.4), CQU (80.1), Curtin U (80.2), Deakin U (82.4), Edith Cowan (84.9), Flinders U (80.1), Murdoch U (80.1), QUT (81.6), Swinburne U (81), UoQ (80.8), UNE (80.8), Uni Sunshine Coast (83).
The universities with overall student ratings under 75 are: Charles Darwin U (74.9), UniSydney (74.9), UNSW (73.7) and USQ (73.6).
While this year’s response rate was down 9 per cent from last year, to 36 per cent, overall satisfaction rates are similar. In 2017 universities had positive ratings for: skill development (81 per cent), teaching quality (80 per cent) and learning resources (84 per cent). However only 60 per cent of university students were positive about learner engagement.
Education Minister Simon Birmingham welcomed the QILT results, explicitly referencing the coming importance of institutional performance in allocating growth-funds for places in 2020. “Our focus on improving outcomes for students is precisely why we want to link a degree of university funding growth to performance outcomes. … By incentivising universities to focus on areas such as student satisfaction and experience, we should see better outcomes for graduates and employers and better value for taxpayers,” Senator Birmingham said.