Monday, July 09, 2007

Fewer Students Studying Science and Mathematics in Australia

Having highlighted the problems with attracting students to study physics in the US and UK, it looks like the problem is similarly being faced in Australia.

A report commissioned by the Australian Council of Deans of Science finds that the proportion of students taking physics subjects is now only two-thirds of what it was in 1989.

The picture for chemistry is also gloomy and for maths it is worse: enrolments in maths fell from 7520 in 1989 to 4988 in 2005.

The decline has occurred against massive growth in higher education with student numbers doubling over the same period.

Luckily, here in the US, there seems to be a turn of events, with many places reporting an increase in enrollment in physics classes. Still, this issue of the decline in interest in physics and math should be dealt with as a long-term problem.


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