START – Australian Graduate Survey Resources

The Survey Training and Resource Tool (START) is the Australian Graduate Survey (AGS) Resources and is designed to assist new and experienced AGS Survey Managers manage all aspects of conducting Australia’s premier survey of higher education graduates conducted by Graduate Careers Australia (GCA).

What is the Australian Graduate Survey?

The Australian Graduate Survey is a national survey conducted by over 50 higher education institutions in Australia.

The purpose of the survey is to:

  • improve students course experience
  • understand employment outcomes to assist career advisers and students make informed career and study decisions
  • understand further study needs
  • assist employers to develop recruitment policies and programs
  • assist higher education institutions in their strategic planning

 The AGS is an umbrella term for three individual surveys and includes:

  • the Graduate Destination Survey (GDS)
  • the Course Experience Questionnaire (CEQ)
  • the Postgraduate Research Experience Questionnaire (PREQ).

 The survey collects information on the main destinations and the higher education experiences of graduates shortly after they qualify, and to provide institutions taking part in the survey with a range of information about their graduates. Within these three areas, the surveys have notably different users of the data. When considering the survey methods and value of the AGS, different uses need to be considered.


The Graduate Destination Survey essentially collects data regarding the immediate (four months after course completion) post-study activities of new graduates (including full- and part-time employment and labour market activity, further study, job search methods, and the relationship between employment and higher education qualifications).

Importantly, the GDS is now complemented by the Beyond Graduation Survey (BGS) which is a three- and five-years after, follow-up of the GDS. The result is a longitudinal study of the early developing years of new graduates careers and offers context and a more complete picture of labour market outcomes for an institutions’ graduates as they transition to the work force.


The Course Experience Questionnaire collects data regarding the views and comments of new graduates concerning their experience of study at the institution. The CEQ consists of two core scales – Good Teaching (GTS) and Generic Skills (GSS) – and a single item called the Overall Satisfaction Item (OSI). These can be complemented by a range of optional scales, based on the needs of the institution.


The Postgraduate Research Experience Questionnaire collects data regarding the views and comments of new research higher degree postgraduates concerning their experience of research at the institution. The PREQ consists of six scales and one overall satisfaction item including

  • supervision
  • intellectual climate
  • skill development
  • infrastructure
  • thesis examination
  • goals and expectations
  • overall satisfaction.

 If you have any queries about this site or would like more information please contact us on (03) 9605 3700 or [email protected]