Publication Date



ISBN 9780473195892 (print)

ISBN 9780473195908 (online)

Australasian Survey of Student Engagement (AUSSE)

Ako Aotearoa - National Centre for Tertiary Teaching Excellence


Although the numbers of students entering bachelor level study in New Zealand is growing and is high relative to OECD averages, the number of students leaving with a qualification is low compared to many other countries. Data from the Ministry of Education show that completion rates are relatively low, particularly among certain groups of students. Around one-third of students who began a bachelor degree in 2002 had not completed the degree, or a degree at the same or a higher level, eight years after starting. Completion rates are higher among Asian New Zealand students, but much lower among Maori and Pasifika students. Eight-year completion rates are also much higher among students studying full-time (80%) than students studying part-time (52%). This report explores student engagement among students studying at New Zealand’s eight universities, and focuses on student groups that are of particular interest to the New Zealand higher-education sector, such as Maori and Pasifika students, students studying via non-traditional modes (such as part-time or extramurally), and international students. Other chapters in this report focus on student workload, differences in engagement between male and female students, students studying in different fields, and students’ departure intentions. Using the most recent results available at each of the eight New Zealand universities participating in the AUSSE from 2007 to 2009, this report provides an overview of the university sector and some answers to questions about students’ experience of university and how they are learning. This report contains chapters by the following authors: Ali Radloff, Hamish Coates, Jacques van der Meer, Keith Comer, Erik Brogt, Giselle Byrnes, Stephen Marshall, Trudy Harris, Richard Coll, Ineke Kranenburg, Jenny Poskitt, Malcolm Rees, Gordon Suddaby.