There are strong educational links between Australia and Papua New Guinea, through connections at the school, teacher and institutional level. Education is a key part of Australia’s development aid program for Papua New Guinea.

Education in Australia

University of Sydney campus, Sydney. (Photo: USYD)

Education is compulsory for all children from the ages of six to sixteen, with official schooling beginning with Prep or Kindergarten through to Year 12. In most states, students are required to remain in school until year 12, although students moving into full-time employment can finish at Year 10.
Tertiary studies are provided through the vocational education and training (VET) system, and through universities. Mobility and accreditation in the Australian education system is achieved through the Australian Quality Framework, which enables school, vocation and university qualifications to be awarded by a mix of institutions from the government, community and private sectors. Institutions that are recognized under the AQF are able to provide services that attract subsidised fees and loan programs.

Education in Papua New Guinea

Students at Caritas Technical Secondary School, East Boroko, Port Moresby. (Photo: Ness Kerton/DFAT)

Successive governments in Papua New Guinea have broadened access to school based education, and this has been reflected in statistics showing an increase in educational opportunity. The UN has measured a doubling in school attendance over the years since 1990. School attendance is not compulsory, but is encouraged for the six years of primary schooling from ages 7 to 12. Since 2012, attendance at school has been free of tuition fees. Secondary education is provided by high schools, with National High Schools providing boarding education for high-achieving senior students in years 11 and 12.
The government operates universities in Port Moresby (UPNG), Goroka (University of Goroka), Rabaul (University of Natural Resources and Environment) and Lae (University of Technology). The Divine Word university in Madang is operated by the Catholic Church, and Pacific Adventist University in Port Moresby by the Seventh Day Adventist Church.

Links & Resources

Australian Education System – DFAT training overview
Study in Australia – Australian education system
Australia.gov – Australian Education System
Papua New Guinea – National Education Plan 2015-2019
Papua New Guinea – Tuition Fee Free policy
PNG Education System – structure

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Emerging Leader Participants

Bernard Yegiora - Lecturer, International Relations - Divine Word University - Lowy Institute

Bernard Yegiora

Lecturer, International Relations - Divine Word University

ELD Year:
2018

Country:
Papua New Guinea

Current Location:
Madang

Bernard Yegiora is a lecturer in international relations at Divine Word University in Madang. He teaches courses like theories of international relations, international law in international relations, Foreign Policy analysis, PNG Foreign Policy, international and regional security including geopolitics in the Asia-Pacific. He has previously worked at the University of PNG and the National Research Institute. He brings a strong understanding of PNG’s international relations to the Dialogue and has written extensively for a number of years on China’s growing involvement in the Pacific region. He regularly writes at his blog The Yegiora Files. Bernard holds a Masters of International Politics from Jilin University, China and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Papua New Guinea.


Mikaela Seymour - Medical Doctor - Lowy Institute

Mikaela Seymour

Medical Doctor

ELD Year:
2017

Country:
Australia

Current Location:
Sunshine Coast

Dr Mikaela Seymour is a Medical Doctor, working as a Principal House Officer in General Surgery at Sunshine Coast University Hospital. Graduating from Griffith University in 2015 with a Masters of Medicine, she is currently undertaking her masters of Surgical Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. Mikaela was previously selected for the Queensland Rural Medical Education Placement to Western Province PNG, and has continued to volunteer in Papua New Guinea, returning five times since 2015 to volunteer as a Doctor in Training. Mikaela is current chair of the Junior Medical Officers Forum of Queensland, and previous Deputy chair of the Australasian Junior Medical Officers Committee. She currently sits on the Medical Workforce Advisory Committee and Medical Schools Liasion Committee to the Office of the Chief Medical Officer and the Hospital Accreditation Committee for Queensland Pre-vocational Medical Education. Dr Seymour is an associate lecturer with the University of Queensland, and a Medical Educator with Queensland Rural Medical Education. She also serves with the Australian Army as a Captain in the 2nd Health Support Company, Gallipoli Barracks

@mik594

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