An investigation of postsecondary patterns and pathways of IB graduates in the Australian tertiary education sector (2012)

Daniel Edwards and Catherine Underwood, ACER

This study aims to investigate the enrolment, progression, achievement, and postsecondary patterns of IB Diploma Programme students at two Australian universities. There are two data collections for this project. The first is a longitudinal analysis, tracking 154 students through their application, enrolment and progression through university. The second is a snapshot analysis of 2007 and 2010 data on applications and graduations in the student population aimed at giving us an idea of the characteristics of the applicant pool and the post-tertiary pathways of the graduates. Findings from the study suggest that IB DP graduates progress through university studies at higher rates than non-IB cohorts and that IB DP graduates are more likely than non-IB DP graduates to complete their degree within five years. From 2006/07 to 2010/11, IB applicants to the universities increased by an average of 67%, and these applicants were more likely to be offered admission by the universities. At the one university which had comparative data for a non-IB group, analysis indicates that: after controlling for student characteristics, the two groups had similar GPAs; IB scores converted to ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank) had higher correlations to GPAs than non-IB group scores; and both groups had similar rates of continuing on to further study, but IB students had slightly higher rates of full- or part-time employment.

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