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ERIC Number: ED514723
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 46
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 23
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-9218-0948-4
Outcomes from Combining Work and Tertiary Study. A National Vocational Education and Training Research and Evaluation Program Report
Polidano, Cain; Zakirova, Rezida
National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER)
Working in some capacity is almost considered de rigueur for tertiary students. The reasons for working and the impact this has on both an individual's ability to complete their studies and on their post-study labour market outcomes are only recently receiving attention. Using the 1995 and 1998 cohorts of the Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth (LSAY), this study investigates the motivations for and the education and employment outcomes from working while studying for both vocational education and training (VET) and higher education students. The authors find that income is an important motivating factor: those in receipt of income support are less likely to work while studying, although this is dependent on whether the student is still living at home. Key messages from this study include: (1) For those studying full-time, working impacts on completion--the more hours worked, the greater the effect; (2) Finding work in a job considered a "career" job while studying has a significant and positive impact on course completion for both VET and higher education students; (3) For all tertiary students, being employed in the final year of study improves the chances of finding full-time employment, even three years after completing the course; and (4) Interestingly, for both full- and part-time students, the longer they have been employed in a job, the greater the likelihood of course completion, while past work experience also increases the likelihood of completion for full-time students (2.5 percentage points per year of employment). Thus it is clear that combining study and work does have significant effects on completion and future employment prospects. Too much work negatively impacts on study completion, but on the other hand work experience does benefit future job prospects. The ideal combination would be modest hours of work in a job relevant to a future career--but this will be difficult to achieve for many students. An appendix is included. (Contains 16 tables, 1 box and 20 footnotes.)
National Centre for Vocational Education Research Ltd. P.O. Box 8288, Stational Arcade, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia. Tel: +61-8-230-8400; Fax: +61-8-212-3436; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Australian Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
Authoring Institution: National Centre for Vocational Education Research
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth