Chapter 4: Research degree completions

Research degree completions by TEO, 2007–2010

4.36The tables in the series that follows provide RDC counts for the years 2007 to 2010, thereby incorporating overlapping data used for two funding periods9 and allowing greater analysis of changes over time.

Table 4.8: RDCs by NQF grouping with change between years, 2007–2010

TEO PBRF NQF grouping 2007 Change
2006 → 
2007
2008 Change
2007 →
2008
2009 Change
2008 →
2009
2010 Total
The University of Auckland Doctorate 198 14.65% 227 7.93% 245 19.18% 292 962
Masters 561 2.85% 577 22.36% 706 (1.70%) 694 2,538
Post Grad 31 (12.90%) 27 (81.48%) 5 0.00% 5 68
University of Otago Doctorate 144 6.94% 154 15.58% 178 16.85% 208 684
Masters 213 0.47% 214 3.74% 222 (12.61%) 194 843
Post Grad 22 (22.73%) 17 11.76% 19 15.79% 22 80
Massey University Doctorate 115 2.61% 118 5.08% 124 12.10% 139 496
Masters 216 15.74% 250 (8.00%) 230 (15.22%) 195 891
University of Canterbury Doctorate 105 28.57% 135 (14.07%) 116 (4.31%) 111 467
Masters 255 (16.86%) 212 (1.42%) 209 (0.96%) 207 883
Post Grad 3 (100.00%)           3
Victoria University of Wellington Doctorate 95 (23.16%) 73 4.11% 76 86.84% 142 386
Masters 188 37.77% 259 (8.49%) 237 4.64% 248 932
University of Waikato Doctorate 60 (25.00%) 45 42.22% 64 3.13% 66 235
Masters 133 1.50% 135 (2.22%) 132 40.15% 185 585
Auckland University of Technology Doctorate 13 269.23% 48 (35.42%) 31 12.90% 35 127
Masters 45 180.00% 126 12.70% 142 (7.04%) 132 445
Post Grad 11 27.27% 14 85.71% 26 65.38% 43 94
Lincoln University Doctorate 27 (25.93%) 20 65.00% 33 33.33% 44 124
Masters 38 (10.53%) 34 11.76% 38 (7.89%) 35 145
Unitec New Zealand Doctorate 1 (100.00%)     1 (100.00%)   2
Masters 41 (21.95%) 32 125.00% 72 11.11% 80 225
Waikato Institute of Technology Masters 6 16.67% 7 (57.14%) 3 133.33% 7 23
Post Grad 10 (10.00%) 9 22.22% 11 90.91% 21 51
Otago Polytechnic Masters 10 40.00% 14 (57.14%) 6 16.67% 7 37
Christchurch College of Education Masters 2 (100.00%)     1 (100.00%)   3
Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design Masters 11 (9.09%) 10 (50.00%) 5 260.00% 18 44
Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi Masters     3 0.00% 3 200.00% 9 15
Post Grad 7 (100.00%)           7
Laidlaw College Incorporated Masters 3 33.33% 4 25.00% 5 0.00% 5 17
Eastern Institute of Technology Masters         6 (16.67%) 5 11
Total   2,564   2,764   2,946   3,149  

Universities

4.37While none of the participating TEIs sustained consistent year-on-year growth in their total count of all RDC types between 2007 and 2010, the three highest performing universities continued to produce steady increases in the numbers of PhDs completed over these four years (The University of Auckland; University of Otago; Massey). Doctoral completions also rose in the remaining universities, albeit less consistently and, with the exception of the University of Canterbury, over two – rather than all three – measured periods of change.

4.38There were decreases in terms of the number of doctoral completions between 2007 and 2008 at Victoria University of Wellington, the University of Waikato, and Lincoln University followed by successive increases at each of these universities between 2008 and 2009 and 2009 and 2010. In terms of PhD completions one of the most significant was the increase of 86.84 percentage points (increasing from 76 to 142 completions) at Victoria University of Wellington between 2009 and 2010. In terms of PhD completions the University of Canterbury decreased between both 2008 and 2009 (-14.07 percent) and 2009 and 2010 (-4.31 percent), while the Auckland University of Technology decreased between 2008 and 2009 (-35.42 percent) and increased in the following interval by 12.90 percent compared with the previous year.

4.39For the Auckland University of Technology fluctuations between years in terms of PhD completions are due to relatively low base numbers, it may also be due to one-off surges in completions, and may reflect earlier surges in uptake – targeted or otherwise – and/or transfers from Masters degrees.

4.40There were strong increases for the University of Auckland, University of Otago, and Massey University between 2009 and 2010 in terms of the number of doctorial completions. Each of the aforementioned universities increased by double digit percentages on the previous year with 19.18, 16.85, and 12.10 percent respectively or 47, 36, and 15 completions.

4.41In general Masters completions increased in volume between 2007 and 2008 and the following interval, however between 2009 and 2010 this number dropped across six universities. Both Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Waikato increased the number of successfully completed Masters during this period with a 4.64 percent and 40.15 percent increase respectively compared with the previous year.

Other TEOsTop

4.42In the ITP sub-sector, counts of RDCs remained low compared with the universities. Outside of the universities Unitec was the only ITP with any Doctoral completions with 1 during 2007 and 1 in 2009. Unitec also had the highest number of Masters completions of the remaining institutions and slightly more than the smallest university (Lincoln University). Unlike most others, Waikato Institute of Technology most commonly awarded Postgraduate Diplomas and Honours – these made up 75 percent of its RDCs in 2010.

4.43Compared with the universities the ITPs and PTEs had small base numbers of RDCs and as such there were large fluctuations between years in terms of percentage increases on the previous interval. After drops in consecutive years Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design had an increase in RDCs between 2009 and 2010 and remains the largest PTE on this measure.

4.44Since being approved to deliver Masters programmes in 2007 Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi has consistently increased its Masters completions, and is expected to award doctorates in the future.

9While these counts were accurate at the time funding decisions were made in late 2012, they may be subject to change. Any revisions for the years 2008 to 2010 will be reflected in the PBRF Annual Report 2012.