Determinants of Access and Equity in Tertiary Education: The Case of Indonesia

Keiichi Ogawa, Kosuke Iimura


How does an individual choose to pursue tertiary education in Indonesia in an era of mass tertiary education? What factors affect this decision? In thisarticle, we analyze the determinants of access to tertiary education in Indonesia from the demand side using household survey data. We also examine theimpact of regional and family background factors on inequity of access to tertiary education. In order to analyze the demand side factors for tertiaryeducation, we use a multi-nominal logit model to examine what factors influence an individual’s decision to pursue a sarjana (bachelor’s) program,diploma program, or work after s/he graduates from high school. The data used is from the fourth Indonesia Family Life Survey (IFLS4) which wasconducted by the RAND Corporation and others between 2007 and 2008. Key findings of the analysis are as follows: (1) the education level of the head ofhousehold and family income per household member have significant positive effects on the choice of pursuing tertiary education; (2) in urban areas, theeducation level of household spouse and students’ test scores in high school are positively significant; (3) living in urban areas per se does not have acorrelation with entry into tertiary education; (4) access to bachelor’s programs for urban residents is most likely affected by the family backgroundfactors; (5) holding everything else constant, the tendency is for females to enroll in diploma programs, but not for bachelor’s programs.

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