Consultation Paper on the reallocation of Commonwealth supported places for enabling, sub-bachelor and postgraduate courses

The Australian Government provides a number of Commonwealth supported places (CSPs) for enabling, sub-bachelor and postgraduate courses each year. The distribution of these places across higher education providers reflects historical, ad hoc decisions that may no longer be optimal. Many of these places are also underutilised.

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The Government is committed to a world-class higher education system that provides appropriate support for students, removes barriers for under-represented groups and is sustainable for current and future generations. To this end, the Government is seeking to ensure there is a robust rationale and framework for Government investment in enabling, sub‑bachelor and postgraduate places that provides capacity to respond to changing demands and priorities. The proposed new arrangements aim to ensure Government support is directed to courses that meet the needs of students and deliver graduates for the changing workforce.

The department has released a Consultation Paper that sets out options for a new mechanism for Government allocation of enabling, sub-bachelor and postgraduate courses and seeks feedback from stakeholders on which courses should be funded and why. The new arrangements will come into effect from 2020.

Issues for feedback

The Consultation Paper seeks input from stakeholders on the proposed allocation process including the scope of the re-distribution, the number of places involved for each course level (enabling, sub-bachelor and postgraduate); the suggested reallocation criteria; and timeframes for future reallocation rounds.


Public submissions to the Consultation Paper were accepted until 15 February 2019. The department received 46 submissions in total. All submissions are available to view on the department's website, with the exception of one submission as the author requested it be withheld from publishing.