Realising Our Potential will allow the higher education sector to become more demand driven and responsive. It will promote more competition between universities for students and ensure a higher quality university system.
The Government will provide $211 million over four years to increase the flexibility of the funding of university places. This will allow funding to reflect actual enrolments within 5 per cent of a university's funding allocation (the current limit on over enrolments is 1 per cent).
This will mean that students with the capacity to benefit from a university place can obtain one.
Realising Our Potential recognises that ultimately it is students themselves who are in the best position to judge what education opportunities they wish to pursue. It will provide $557 million over four years to increase and simplify funding for a number of disciplines. This will make it easier for universities to modify the mix of courses they offer to better reflect student and employer demand and to continue to provide high quality courses.
The cap on the HECS-HELP fee and the public subsidy for Accounting, Administration, Economics and Commerce will be aligned with Law to reflect the
high salaries that graduates in these disciplines receive.
A new Diversity and Structural Adjustment Fund of $209 million will support greater specialisation and responsiveness to local labour market needs, particularly among regional and smaller metropolitan universities.
$222 million over four years will be provided for increased income support and for an extra 3,500 Commonwealth Learning Scholarships, focused on assisting students from low income backgrounds to attend university.
11 2007‑08 Budget Overview