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Media Release: Survey says Govt should pay more for university education

Posted 22 June 2011 by Michael Evans (NTEU National Office)

New research reveals that Australians are worried about universities being distracted from their core responsibilities of teaching and research. A recent survey commissioned by the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) found that 88% of respondents were concerned that universities were under pressure to deliver a profit. 

“People are saying that Universities are underfunded, that students are paying too much and that Universities are too reliant on international income,” Jeannie Rea, National President of the NTEU, said today.

“This research shows that Australians believe that the Government needs to invest in our Universities.”

“Everyone is affected by the work of our Universities, whether it’s because of the improvements in their lives from research, or because their children are being taught by a university educated teacher.  Their doctor is university educated, as is their accountant, architect, engineer and librarian,” Ms Rea said. 

“An investment in our universities is an investment in our future.”

Key issues highlighted by the research include:

  • Over 70% think that university education has become more expensive and less accessible over the last decade, despite the actual expansion in University places.
  • 76% are concerned that the Federal Government is too reliant on overseas fee paying students to fund Australia’s universities.
  • 73% believe government should fund any shortfall in University funding.
  • 88% of respondents are concerned that universities are under pressure to deliver a profit.
  • 83% agree that a well funded university system is critical for Australia’s economy and future growth.
  • 70% indicated that the Federal Government should prioritise increasing the number of Australians with university qualifications.

The research was conducted in March of this year and was in the form of polling of 1700 people from across Australia. A summary of the results is below:

(687 KB) - PDF

Well Funded Universities Critical for Australia

2011 University Funding Survey results.



For further information and contact:

Jeannie Rea, NTEU National President, 0434 609 531

Matthew McGowan, NTEU National Assistant Secretary, 0417 054 110

Michael Evans, media enquiries, 0418 241 664


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