How good are the students who go to university via a TAFE

Angela O’Brien-Malone and I have just had a paper (DOI: 10.1080/02188791.2018.1423953)


published by the Asia Pacific Journal of Education in which we compare the performance of students who go to Monash University directly from Year 12 with the performance of students who enter Monash University via a college of technical and further education, commonly known in Australia as a “TAFE”. The basis of the paper is our further analysis of data originally reported by Willis and Joschko (2012).

We used quantile regression with restricted cubic splines to examine the relationship between students’ Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR), their pathway of entry to university, and their performance during first-year university. The short story from a rather long paper is that we found outstanding performance to be largely confined to students entering Monash University directly from Year 12, rather than from  a TAFE. However, we also found that for any given ATAR, TAFE-entry students were more likely to pass their first year of university than were students entering directly from Year 12. To put that statement in its more striking present-tense reverse-form, students coming to university directly from Year 12 have a greater chance of failing first-year than do TAFE-entry student entering (Monash) university from a TAFE.

Having said that, it is worth bearing in mind that the TAFE-entry students are a very special, essentially self-selected bunch. For more details, have a look at the paper!

Location of NBN fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) cabinets

nbn co lack of transparency

The national broadband network (NBN) in Australia is owned and managed by nbnco limited (ABN 86 136 533 741), a company which, although subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth), has shown a distinct unwillingness to release information under FOI about, well, almost anything at all. Several people have made public requests through Right To Know for information about the location of the fibre-to-the-node cabinets that mark the end-point of the NBN optic-fibre network for a majority of households in Australia. None has been successfl. See, for example, the requests by me, by Karen L, and by Rick Torre.

It occurred to me that it would be possible to build a database of all, or almost all, of the FTTN cabinets in Australia if people were willing to submit their local information to a central data base. With that in mind, I’ve been photographing and noting the location of FTTN cabinets that I see and I hope to build an online repository that combines the cabinet names, locations and photographs. I’d be interested in receiving more information from readers. Please use the comments to submit details of any cabinets you see. Be sure to include the code-word MONKEY, the name of the FTTN cabinet and its GPS or, perhaps more simply, its what3words coordinates … otherwise the comment is likely to disappear automatically into the trash.

Here are the locations of a few cabinets

Note, the latitude and longitude are derived from Google Maps, which uses WGS 84 Web Mercator as its coordinate system. If one uses The List, from the Tasmanian Government, one gets the coordinates in the GDA94 system.

Name: FTTN Cabinet 7MGT-01-03-FNO-001
Latitude: -43.03719442 (43°02’13.9″S), Longitude:147.26587929 (147°15’57.17″E)
what3words: sponsorship.trash.shrugs

Name: FTTN Cabinet 7MGT-01-11-FNO-001
Latitude: -43.02978639 (43°01’47.23″S), Longitude: 147.27215363 (147°16’19.75″E)
what3words: heckle.lifting.sneaky

Name: FTTN Cabinet 7MGT-01-02-FNO-001
Latitude: -43.02932072 (43°01’45.55″S), Longitude: 147.26216443 (147°15’43.79″E)
what3words: flooring.lightbulb.formations

Name: FTTN Cabinet 7MGT-01-01-FNO-001
Latitude: -43.02498643 (43°01’29.95S), Longitude: 147.26052694 (147°15’37.9″E)
what3words: lawnmower.mere.dozes

Name: FTTN Cabinet 7MGT-01-07-FNO-001
Latitude: -43.06694496 (43°04’1.00S), Longitude: 147.25567817 (147°15’20.44″E)
what3words: stamps.broader.playhouse

One last thing, if you look carefully at the satellite images on Google Maps, you can spot the distinctive green cabinets at each of the marked locations.