Minister for Higher Education and Skills Peter Hall has unveiled the latest research into the experiences of students who defer university.
The Deferring a University Offer in Victoria report, which documents findings of the second year of a three-report longitudinal study, found that 63 per cent of deferring students were at university three years after completing Year 12.
Another 16 per cent were undertaking vocational training and 12 per cent were in full-time work.
"This is the only comprehensive long-term study of its kind in Australia," Mr Hall said.
"The report shows that outcomes for young people who defer an offer at university are generally positive.
"By the third year out of school, over three quarters of all deferrers are in education or training."
The report reveals a difference in patterns of deferral between metropolitan and regional students.
"Deferring students from regional areas are more likely to take up and remain in a university place," Mr Hall said.
"But young people from regional areas continue to defer places at university at twice the rate of their metropolitan counterparts."
Mr Hall said the Victorian Coalition Government was enhancing support for school students applying for university through the School University Liaison Officer program.
Nine liaison officers are working with universities and 254 low socio-economic status schools across regional and metropolitan Victoria, to raise student aspirations and boost participation in university education.
"Our liaison officers are helping students, teachers, parents and careers advisers to demystify university study, explaining the assistance that’s available such as special entry assistance schemes, scholarships and the like," Mr Hall said.
The Deferring a University Offer in Victoria report was based on research commissioned by the Youth Affairs Council of Victoria and Victoria’s 31 Local Learning and Employment Networks, and was funded by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development.
It includes responses from 1,921 young people who completed Year 12 in 2009 and then were identified as deferring their studies in the Government’s 2010 On Track survey.
"Young Victorians are a pretty capable bunch. That’s clear from the high participation rates of education, training and work that is evident among the young people surveyed in this report," Mr Hall said.
"The Coalition Government is committed to doing more to create opportunity for young people and, through research and hands-on support, we’ll continue to boost participation and ensure that training opportunities are tailored to student and industry needs."
Mr Hall thanked the contributors and the authors, Professor John Polesel and Dr Malgorzata Klatt, for their continued work and said he was looking forward to the final instalment, to be completed at the end of the year.
The full report can be found at
Media contact: Ashley Gardiner 0427 560 438