Go8 Media Release: Go8 strongly supports recommendations of Higher Education Standards Review Panel – and urges Government to go further

16 Nov 2016

The Group of Eight (Go8) is extremely encouraged by the recommendations of the ‘Shergold Report’ which puts the needs of our students front and centre and which was released this morning by  Education Minister Senator Simon Birmingham.

“As noted in the report, Go8 universities took the decision earlier this year to publish information on median, upper and lower quartile ATARs for students offered places at our universities. We did this because, unlike many other universities, the majority of students commencing at Go8 universities (53%) gain admission on the basis of their ATAR. It is in the interests of our students to ensure that transparency in admission arrangements are improved.

“The Go8 completely accepts that universities must be accountable for the information they publish about their admissions policies and it is for this reason that we have established a Go8 Admissions Committee which will work across our members and with Government on the development of a national admission framework.

“A national tertiary admissions centre (TAC) process must also be pursued.  It is ironic that international students can access the full national diversity of Australia's world class university system while domestic students are locked into complex and opaque state based system. For this reason it is critical to pursue a national tertiary admissions centre (TAC) process and a first step, as the report suggests, is to establish consistency in admission application processes."

The Shergold report is a very important report for students. “Its recommendations have been much needed, in fact the Go8 would say long overdue. The Go8 strongly supports its recommendations including that there should be further work on student completion and attrition rates.’’

Ms Thomson said that the Go8 supported transparency at every stage of the admission and undergraduate process and looked forward to reinforcing those views. “Our commitment to transparency must go beyond entry - it must go to completion and attrition rates. We owe that to the taxpayer and our students.”

Contact: Vicki Thomson, Group of Eight Chief Executive on +61 417 808 472