Home' The Good Universities Guide : The Good Universities Guide 2014 Contents 46 GOOD UNIVERSITIES GUIDE
How to use this section
This section provides a series of star ratings across a range of
indicators (such as student–staff ratios, teaching quality and
research grants) where institutions’ results are allocated to
bands. Working from the premise that no institution is superb at
everything, these rankings provide high-level indicators and
should be used to gain comparative insights into the varying
strengths and characteristics of each institution. Note that within
each band, institutions are sorted alphabetically. The ratings are
grouped together under common themes.
This section brings together a large number of rankings of
courses and campuses.
First is a series of university rankings for teaching quality,
how graduates compete in getting jobs and so on.
Second is a table that compares 30 fields of study according
to criteria such as numbers enrolled, entry toughness and
how graduates rate them.
Finally there are rankings — one for each field of study (from
accounting to veterinary science) — arranging universities
that offer courses in each field in order of how tough it is to
get in. Note that if a university uses criteria other than tertiary
entrance scores to determine entry it will not appear in the
toughness league tables. You will be able to find out whether
a particular institution offers courses by looking in Section 3,
‘What to Study’.
‘The institutions compared’ ratings
These tables include a series of ratings and rankings
(beginning on page 47) detailing the position of each
university in five major areas: characteristics; access and
equity; who’s there; the educational experience; and
The ‘Fields of study compared’ table
Throughout The Good Universities Guide publications, all
majors (or specialisations) that can be undertaken within a
course are classified as belonging to one of 30 fields of study.
This table (on page 60) is designed to allow high-level
comparison of each of the fields of study featured within the
Guide. Comparisons can be made in terms of toughness of
entry, the average cost of non-combined degree courses, the
composition of the student body and outcomes (for example,
the mean domestic salaries for those under 25 years of age
in first-time employment). Data for the entry toughness is
derived from the tertiary admissions centres in each state;
fee information relates to 2013 fees and comes from the
institutions; enrolment information is obtained in relation to
2013 enrolments from DIICCSRTE and individual institutions;
and the outcomes data is derived from surveys conducted by
GCA in 2012 with respect to 2011 graduates.
The ‘How tough to get in’ tables
These 30 tables (one for each field of study) beginning on
page 61 compare the relative toughness of entry into courses
at each campus compared to all other courses. A conversion
table is provided to enable conversion of Queensland OP
scores to comparable ATAR scores in all other states and
territories. The table also indicates the range of scores within
each band — very tough, tough and so on.
Calculations of toughness are based on the average 2013
cut-off scores for non-combined courses offered at each
campus by an institution. The exceptions to this are the fields
of architecture and law, where the vast majority of courses
are combined courses. Cut-off scores are as published by
the tertiary admissions centres in January 2013 in each
state. Remember that many institutions offer more than one
course in a field of study at the same campus and the entry
score can vary for each course. For example, an institution
may offer psychology within a BPsych degree as well as part
of a BA or a BSc degree. Remember too that cut-off scores
for one year do not guarantee entry in a future year because
scores are subject to demand for available places. To find out
what the cut-off score was for a particular course at an
institution, see Section 4, ‘Where to study’.
How to use the tables and ratings
These ratings and rankings give an overview only. Make sure
you undertake further careful research before choosing a
course and campus.
The rankings and ratings show that courses and institutions
differ in many ways. Only you can decide which differences
really matter to you.
Use the ratings in this section in conjunction with the
rankings and ratings in each field of study profile (Section 3)
and in the institution profiles (Section 4).
Remember that rankings and ratings are indicators only.
They help but do not present a full picture. Research your choices
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