The Next Step team have created a presentation 394K that gives a brief overview of the Next Step survey.
In April 2004, the Queensland Government issued the Schools Reporting Consultation Paper, which proposed an annual publication of post-school destinations of Queensland Year 12 students. This would complement the publication early in the year of Year 12 results by school.
The feedback from the schools reporting consultation showed broad support for a destination survey of students after finishing Year 12, provided that schools did not have to pay. This was endorsed and supported by the Schools Reporting Steering Committee resulting in the Queensland Government proceeding with the survey from 2005 at no cost to schools.
A similar survey, On Track , has been conducted in Victoria since 2003.
The survey collects information on the post-school destinations of Year 12 students in Queensland in order to assist:
The Next Step survey is conducted by the Department of Education and Training (DET) through the Queensland Government Statistician's Office (QGSO), in accordance with the provisions of the Statistical Returns Act 1896 (Qld). The students to be surveyed are identified by means of a survey frame (or list) provided to QGSO by the QCAA. The survey is conducted between March and June, approximately six months after the young people finish school. This timing is designed to be after tertiary education places are accepted, and while most young people are still contactable via their home address details.
Responses are predominantly collected via computer-assisted telephone interviewing (CATI). Students are also offered the opportunity to complete the survey online. Students for whom telephone details are not available are invited to participate in the survey online or by calling the QGSO. The average time to complete the survey by CATI is four and a half to five minutes.
Prior to the survey commencing, Year 12 completers with usable addresses are sent a letter from the Minister for Education, advising them of the survey.
All responding Year 12 completers go into a draw for a chance to win one of several prizes offered as incentives to encourage survey participation.
At the close of the survey, all non-responding students for whom telephone numbers are available receive a minimum of six attempts at contact. Students who had provided a mobile phone number or email address were sent reminders via SMS or email to encourage their participation.
The Next Step survey collects data from every student who completed Year 12 and was awarded a Senior Statement or in the previous year in Queensland. This includes:
Percentages in Next Step reports have been rounded to one decimal point and so discrepancies may occur between the sum of component items and their totals.
Data editing is performed throughout data entry and after the survey closes. Examples of data editing include checking the data for invalid entries (e.g. entries which were out of range), as well as checking the accuracy of data which was manually entered.
The survey methodology allows for responses to be provided by a proxy. Allowable proxies include parents, siblings and other household members able to respond on behalf of the respondent.
It is possible that some answers supplied by proxies may be different to what would have been stated by the young persons themselves. Therefore, it should be noted that although it is estimated that this error is small, its impact has not been quantified.
When considering the findings of the Next Step survey it is important to note that the post-school destinations of all school leavers are influenced by the environment in which they are transitioning into. This can limit the options available to young people and alter their intended post-school pathways.
For example, the availability of employment opportunities is dependent on the local and broader macroeconomic outlook. In a tight labour market a school leaver may look at an education or training pathway rather than their initially preferred employment pathway.
The survey asks whether young adults are currently studying, working or neither, and the details of these destinations.
The full questionnaire can be downloaded here 373K.
The results of the survey are disseminated in the following ways:
Statewide main destination data is also available for download in Excel format 359K.
The survey complements schools' own surveys, by providing statewide data that allows schools to match local trends with statewide trends. It also provides schools with the option of relying upon Next Step survey data for destination information, at no cost to the school.
For further information about the background, purpose or reporting for Next Step, please contact the Next Step team.
To complete the survey by telephone or for assistance with completing the survey online please contact the Queensland Government Statistician's Office on 1800 068 587 (toll free).