New research from the AFR shows information technology graduates from The University of Western Australia are the highest paid in the country, with a median starting salary of $66,000.
However, perhaps surprisingly, grads from smaller universities earn higher salaries than those from larger institutions in other key disciplines.
The findings were based on a review of newly available data from the Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching website, a government initiative (with a name like that, it has to be government) which allows anyone to compare higher education institutions.
For business and management grads, recent Charles Sturt University alumni top the pay scale around the country with a median starting salary of $60,600, followed by Charles Darwin University and University of New England grads at $60,000.
Engineering students at Federation University Australia can expect a pay packet of $80,000 a year, while Charles Darwin University boasts the highest median starting salary for legal grads, also $80,000.
Finally, a degree from Curtin University is the most financially attractive option for science and maths grads, with a median starting salary of $65,000.
The full list of the most lucrative universities is below, but before you panic and start a transfer application there are a couple of things to keep in mind.
The analysis is based in part on data compiled from the annual Graduate Destination Survey run by Graduate Careers Australia, where recent graduates report their work and salary outcomes after completing their studies.
We covered it last year with an overview of the highest paying degrees in Australia, and it’s clear that what you study rather than where you study has the most overall impact on graduate pay.
And, as the authors of the research point out, breaking down graduate salaries to an institutional level favours universities with higher numbers of part-time students, who are working while completing their degree and therefore have a head start in the pay department.
You guessed it, many smaller universities have higher numbers of part-time students. Which may go a long way to explaining why the list isn’t topped by more familiar names.