Australian University Rankings

Postgrad Australia has created a composite ranking system, which gives equal weight to both student satisfaction and international ranking.
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Richard McKeon
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Many international university ranking systems already exist, the most well known being the:

The major problem with the established university ranking systems is that they place a lot of weight on the academic performance of a university and relatively little weight on the teaching performance. For example, the Times Higher Education World University Rankings methodology allocates 60% of the score based on research and citations, and only 30% based on teaching performance (you can read more here). Most students don’t go onto become researchers, so the quantity and quality of a university’s publications are often unimportant factors for students deciding which university to attend.

To offer more meaningful information to Australian students, Postgrad Australia has created a composite ranking system, the Postgrad Australia University Ranking, which gives equal weight to both student satisfaction and international ranking.

Methodology

The methodology for the Postgrad Australia University Ranking is as follows:

For each Australian University, we calculate a score out of 100.

50% of the score is based on the university's international ranking performance, made up of:

  • 50% THE World University Rankings
  • 30% QS World University Rankings
  • 20% Centre for World University Rankings

The remaining 50% of the score is based on the university's teaching performance, made up of three survey points:

  • The percentage of graduates who expressed overall satisfaction with their course.
  • The percentage of graduates who agreed they experienced good teaching practices during their study.
  • The percentage of graduates who agreed their studies had improved their generic skills.

The Postgrad Australia University Ranking is calculated both for overall performance and performance by study area. The study area results are developed using the same methodology, but with the student satisfaction component drawing only from students who studied a degree within that study field.

The student satisfaction data was sourced from the Australian Government’s Quality Indicators for Learning & Teaching (QILT) website. The QILT data used was for students who have studied postgraduate degrees, however, in cases where not enough data was available at postgraduate level, we used responses from undergraduate students.

We have not used student outcomes like median salary and percentage in full-time employment because these results are often influenced by the socioeconomic characteristics of a university.

Significance

By balancing student satisfaction with existing international university ranking data, we have developed a more meaningful set of results for Australian postgraduate students. For example, institutions such as Bond University and the University of the Sunshine Coast, which rank 30th and 32nd respectively based on international ranking alone (in Australia), perform so well on student satisfaction that their Postgrad Australia University Ranking improves to 14th and 19th respectively.

You can review the entire set of Postgrad Australia University Rankings here.