Australia’s most educated areas

Australia’s most educated areas

Where are the most educated areas in Australia?

We list the top 30 “Braniac areas”…the local government areas that boast the highest percentage of tertiary educated residents in Australia…

In this article, we investigate the number of tertiary educated residents living in each local government area, and express that number as a percentage of total residents over the age of 15.

(Note: We don’t include under 15’s, as these residents are unlikely (!) to hold Bachelor or higher degrees – Doogie Howser may have been the only exception…)

The “most educated” area in Australia is in NSW, and it is…


North Sydney, with 48.9% of the 15+ population holding a Bachelor or higher degree….

Table 1 – residents over 15 years of age with Bachelor or higher degree

Rank Local Government Area State
Bachelor or Higher degree
Persons %
1 North Sydney (A) NSW 27,043 48.9%
2 Subiaco (C) WA 6,968 45.9%
3 Nedlands (C) WA 7,526 45.6%
4 Lane Cove (A) NSW 11,610 45.5%
5 Mosman (A) NSW 10,184 45.4%
6 Yarra (C) VIC 29,212 44.7%
7 Woollahra (A) NSW 19,639 44.5%
8 Leichhardt (A) NSW 19,246 44.3%
9 Cottesloe (T) WA 2,757 43.9%
10 Willoughby (C) NSW 23,896 43.8%
11 Ku-ring-gai (A) NSW 37,545 43.3%
12 Stonnington (C) VIC 34,994 43.2%
13 Boroondara (C) VIC 56,703 43.2%
14 Melbourne (C) VIC 37,283 42.9%
15 Cambridge (T) WA 8,421 42.5%
16 Port Phillip (C) VIC 34,317 42.2%
17 Claremont (T) WA 3,278 41.9%
18 Sydney (C) NSW 63,309 40.2%
19 Manly (A) NSW 12,945 40.2%
20 Waverley (A) NSW 21,233 39.5%
21 Peppermint Grove (S) WA 474 38.3%
22 Perth (C) WA 5,996 37.8%
23 Burnside (C) SA 13,225 37.3%
24 Mosman Park (T) WA 2,641 37.1%
25 Hunters Hill (A) NSW 3,962 37.0%
26 Unley (C) SA 11,338 36.7%
27 Adelaide (C) SA 6,623 35.8%
28 Glen Eira (C) VIC 38,342 35.7%
29 Vincent (T) WA 9,664 35.5%
30 Hobart (C) TAS 14,760 35.5%

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011

What about by State?

The table below shows the total number of people in each state or territory with a Bachelor or higher degree  – and also that number expressed as a percentage of the population aged 15 and over. 

Table 2 – Person with Bachelor Degree or higher – State totals

State Bachelor or Higher degree
Persons %
ACT 98,658 34.0%
VIC 905,492 20.8%
NSW 1,107,042 19.9%
WA 312,637 17.6%
SA 207,856 15.9%
QLD 547,624 15.9%
NT 23,542 15.1%
TAS 56,901 14.2%

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011

ACT is ranked the most educated state or territory based on percentage, although as the largest state in Australia NSW still has largest actual number of persons with a Bachelor degree or higher.

In the traditional NSW/Victoria rivalry, it is Victoria however, that is ranked a little higher than NSW on percentage.

Figure 1 – Persons with Bachelor Degree or higher – State percentages

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011

 So…how does your area compare?

If you want to know how your council area or suburb compares, check out “qualifications” under “who are we” in for your area.  You can find your council area in the demographic resource centre

If your council doesn’t currently subscribe to, learn more about how can provide a comprehensive demographic resource tool for council decision making…


Lailani - Population News

Lailani is responsible for content and strategy at .id, ensuring our clients’ needs are central to our enterprise and that we generously share our knowledge with the broadest audience. As a member of our Board, Lailani works with Ivan and Janet to set the strategic direction for the company. Her current focus is our Placemaker consulting business and she has worked with numerous clients across retail, finance, property, local government, education and not-for-profits to put together the best evidence-base for their spatial decision making. With degrees in Business Studies and Economics, she has worked in business development and marketing roles for IBM and SPSS in the UK, as well as a stint as a ranger in Kakadu National Park. Lailani is an Alexander Technique practitioner, surfer and traveller.

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