Federal Election 2016: Malcolm Turnbull says maths, science should be prerequisite for university

Studying maths or science in Year 12 should be a prerequisite for entry into university, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said.

Campaigning in the marginal Sydney seat of MacArthur, Mr Turnbull lamented the fact that fewer and fewer students were studying STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths) during their later years of high school and said the Coalition was working to turn that around.

"We're ensuring, and working with the states and territories, to ensure kids have to do maths or science to finish high school," he said.

"More universities are requiring and they should all require in due course that maths or science should be a prerequisite school subject to have completed to go onto university.

"This is a big priority."

Fittingly, it was a question from a 12-year-old Sydney schoolgirl that prompted the announcement.

The ABC's first Behind the News (BTN) Rookie Reporter, Maya, has been following both Mr Turnbull and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten on the campaign trail.

"Prime Minister, there's been a big push to get students into science and technology subjects. How do you think this will affect the future of Australia?" she asked.

 Studying maths and science is not compulsory for Year 11 and 12 students in Victoria, NSW and the ACT.

But Mr Turnbull said it was vital to ensure Australians were literate in STEM subjects, declaring "that's the future".

"We all envy your youth. We all wish we were as young as you," Mr Turnbull said, addressing Maya directly.

"The world is transforming at a pace never seen before and it's been driven by technology and by the imagination of young people like yourself."

The Prime Minister and three of his ministers attended a truck rally in Smeaton Grange this morning to reaffirm the Coalition's commitment to the tens of thousands of owner-operator drivers across Australia.

It was Mr Turnbull's third campaign visit to the marginal Liberal-held electorate of MacArthur, which is a seat in play this election.

Source: ABC News

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