Dr Chris Tisdell, School of Mathematics and Statistics, UNSW.
“What employment options will studying mathematics give me?” is a common question from prospective students at universities' Open Days / Courses and Careers Days. This question has motivated the present report, that measures employers' attitudes towards graduates who possess mathematical skills.
A diverse range of employers were surveyed, with their responses being unanimously positive towards graduates with mathematical abilities. The result emphatically illustrates that employers highly value job applicants with strong mathematical skills.
The study was conducted by Dr Chris Tisdell at UNSW's Careers Expo 2013 http://www.careers.unsw.edu.au/Students/Meeting_The_Employers/Annual_Careers_Expo.chpx.
Employers were represented from a diverse range of areas, such as:
- information technology.
A full list of the 53 organisations who participated can be found at the end of this report.
The survey consisted of one question, namely:
“We highly value strong mathematical skills when considering job applicants”,
with potential responses:
- Strongly agree
- Mildly agree
- Mildly disagree
- Strongly disagree.
“Mathematical skills” are the kinds of competencies acquired by students who complete mathematics courses and were listed on the survey to include:
- problem-solving skills;
- analytical ability;
- logical + deductive reasoning;
- creative thinking;
- data management, modelling + interpretation;
- programming / IT skills;
- mathematical communication skills.
In response to the statement “We highly value strong mathematical skills when considering job applicants”:
- 100% of employers broadly agreed ;
- 60% of employers “Strongly agreed”;
- 36% of employers “Agreed”;
- 4% of employers “Mildly agreed”;
- 0% of employers “Mildly disagreed”;
- 0% of employers “Disagreed”;
- 0% of employers “Strongly disagreed”.
Thus, the employer-responses reflect attitudes that are unanimously positive towards graduates who possess mathematical skills.
The results suggest that students who undertake mathematics at high-school and tertiary levels will be highly valued and in significant demand by employers across a range of fields.
List of Participants
|Abergeldie Complex Infrastructure||Defence Graduate Opportunities||National Australia Bank|
|Abigroup Contractors Pty Ltd||Dixon Advisory||Norman Disney & Young|
|Accenture||Douglas Partners||NSW Treasury|
|AECOM||Eaton Industries||Panit Software Testing|
|Aliom Trading Academy||ExxonMobil||PPB Advisory|
|Amadeus IT Pacific||Fulton Hogan||Qantas|
|ARRB Group Ltd||Eclipse Options||QGC - A BG Group Business|
|ACT Public Service||Golder Associates||Rio Tinto - Northparkes Mines|
|Australia and New Zealand Banking Limited||Grant Thornton Australia Limited||SAS|
|Australian Defence Force||HATCH||Schnieder Electric|
|Australian Prudential Regulation Authority||HSBC||Sydney Water|
|Australian Taxation Office||IMC Pacific||Taylor Thompson Whitting|
|Bloomberg L.P.||Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia||Teach For Australia|
|Capgemini Australia||Institute of Public Accountants||Teach in NSW Public Schools|
|CPA Australia||KPMG||Westpac Group|
|CSA Mine Glencore||Microsoft Corporation|