- CSIRO has predicted that 75 per cent of all jobs will require STEM skills over the coming years
- There are many top Australian universities for STEM to choose from.
If you study STEM, you will:
Find a course to suit all interestsThink STEM is just for aspiring scientists, engineers and mathematicians? There are actually hundreds of specialisations, suiting any student who likes asking questions or being challenged. Expect institutions to offer:
- game development
- veterinary studies.
If you're not sure what you'd like to study or want more time to see where STEM can take you, a generalist course such as certificate, diploma or degree in science or engineering is a good option. For example, in a Bachelor of Science you can start by exploring the basics before selecting a major in your second or third year.
Double degrees are also worth considering — why not combine science or mathematics with teaching or journalism to boost your career prospects?
If you're heading into postgraduate study, coursework and research are equally inspiring.
Interested in both? You might opt for a coursework degree with a minor thesis.
Be immersed in the latest technological innovationsStudying and working in STEM means:
- learning about the world around you
- finding innovative solutions to real-world challenges
- playing a role in some of the country's major discoveries and developments.
Want to work with robots, refine driverless car technology or cure disease? You'll have these opportunities and more in STEM.
And don't forget, you'll be taught by professionals who are passionate about their field. They may be researchers, seasoned industry experts or currently making their mark in the workforce.
Learn transferable skills
You'll learn a range of transferable skills that can be used in just about any occupation or industry, meaning you'll emerge from your studies as an all-rounder with an impressive résumé.
If you're good with numbers and data, or have strong technical skills, you'll be suitable for a range of roles.
You'll also boast attributes that are increasingly important to employers in today's competitive job market, also known as soft skills or employability skills:
- high-level communication
- critical thinking
Although the overall graduate employment rate has slipped in recent years, the transferable skills gained in a STEM course mean that you'll enjoy strong job prospects into the future.
Also keep in mind that some of the strongest employment rates and salaries come from STEM disciplines. According to Prosple, Australia's average graduate salary of $68,000 for 2023 is juxtaposed with sector-specific averages such as:
- $69,609 in engineering consulting
- $71,534 in technology
- $82,135 in the mining, oil and gas industry.
When it comes to securing full-time employment, the fields with the best prospects tend to be those requiring STEM skills. Check out our ratings section for all the details.
Have access to a range of professional development and mentoring opportunities
The federal and state governments are working hard to increase the STEM workforce, which means that students and graduates are supported by a great range of mentoring, professional development and assistance schemes.
Numerous initiatives aim to support women entering STEM, given the gender imbalance in most professions (explore Engineers Australia's Women in Engineering division).
Additionally, consider programs such as CSIRO's ON Accelerate — designed to help bring the innovative ventures of PhD students and their teams to pass with the help of mentors.
Do some research or chat to your career adviser for more information.
In addition, there are various scholarships targeting students entering these fields. They may be awarded for academic merit or equity, or for particular student groups (women entering non-traditional fields or those who have experienced educational disadvantage, for example).
There are also specialised degrees that combine study with paid work placements where you can benefit from industry-funded, tax-free scholarships and work placements with industry partners.
Keen to get started? Explore your top options of STEM education providers on our ratings page.