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Communiqués – CESC Releases New Indicators in Education

by NationTalk on September 8, 2009798 Views


TORONTO, September 8, 2009 – The Canadian Education Statistics Council (CESC) released today Education Indicators in Canada: An International Perspective, 2009, a new report that provides indicators on educational attainment, upper-secondary graduation, tertiary graduation, the academic performance of students, labour-market outcomes, the economic benefits of education, expenditures on education, international students, and transitions to the labour market — for Canada, its provinces and territories, and for OECD countries.Some of the results gathered in this report indicate that

• In 2007, 21% of Canadian adults aged 55 to 64 had completed university programs. Canada ranked fourth among OECD countries for this age group. For the 25-to-34 age group, Canada shared 12th rank with Japan and the United Kingdom, with 29% of the population having graduated from university.

• In 23 of 25 OECD countries, including Canada (and all provinces and territories), females were more likely than males to graduate from high school. The same pattern held true for graduation from university programs.

• As in other OECD countries, in 2006, postsecondary graduates in Canada earned considerably more than secondary graduates, an average of 40% more. This advantage ranged from 7% in Alberta to more than 55% in Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec.

• In 2005, Canada devoted 6.2% of its GDP to educational institutions, above the OECD average of 5.7%. This placed Canada seventh highest among OECD countries.

• In Canada, about 7% of students enrolled in bachelor’s or master’s programs, and 21% enrolled in advanced research programs, were international students. This compares with OECD averages of 7% and 16%, respectively. British Columbia, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia had the highest proportion of international students; in these provinces, international students accounted for approximately 10% of all university students.

“These new indicators will assist us in understanding better how different education systems work and will allow us to define new benchmarks while developing a deeper understanding of positive education strategies from around the world,” said Diane McGifford, Minister of Advanced Education and Literacy for Manitoba and the new Chair of the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC).

This report is the first in a new series intended to facilitate the comparison of education systems in Canada’s provinces and territories with those of OECD member countries. The education indicators presented in the report are drawn from a set of indicators released today in OECD’s Education at a Glance.

“CMEC’s vision for Learn Canada 2020, our joint ministerial statement, also gives us a new way to compare provincial and territorial education systems to those in other countries,” said Minister McGifford.

For additional key findings, consult the Highlights section of Education Indicators in Canada: An International Perspective, 2009, at

CESC is a partnership between CMEC and Statistics Canada established in 1989 to improve the quality and comparability of Canadian education data and to provide information that can inform policy development in education. CMEC is an intergovernmental body composed of the ministers responsible for elementary-secondary and advanced education from the provinces and territories.

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Tamara Davis
Coordinator, Communications and Media Relations
Cell: 416.804.6548
Tel.: 416.962.8100, ext. 241
E-mail: t.davis[at]

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