Based on university enrolment data, we estimate that 28% of Australian university students, or 436,000 people, are studying for a STEM degree. The largest fields are Natural and Physical Sciences (8.6% of all students), Engineering (7.8%) and Information Technology (7.5%). Business courses have been excluded from this particular calculation.
If you're interested in studying online, 100% online STEM courses are available for: most science majors, information technology programs, some non-professional engineering degrees, and for just about any math subject you can think of. Students may have to attend a campus, at least occasionally, for hands-on STEM fields, including some science majors and professional engineering degrees.
Science is the largest and most diverse STEM field. The "S" in STEM covers dozens of disciplines, from agricultural science to zoology. Online science courses are available except where lab work or field work are essential for learning.
If you're starting university and want to study science, enrolling in a Bachelor of Science is normally the way to go. You can start with a cross-disciplinary program that allows for numerous possible majors. Just be sure to do the introductory subjects (e.g. "Chemistry 101") for the major(s) you're interested in.
Animal Science and Management
Astronomy and Astrophysics
Cell and Developmental Biology
Climate and Weather
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Human Structure and Function
Indigenous Science and Knowledges
Infection and Immunity
Quantitative Environmental Modelling
Technology is important across many disciplines. With respect to STEM and online university degrees, "technology" essentially refers to information technology, computer science and data science.
Most online technology students are enrolled in a Bachelor of Information Technology, Master of Information Technology, or similar program. Core subjects may include programming, systems analysis, database management, networking and communications, security, and technology support. At both undergraduate and masters levels, you can specialise by selecting subjects from a study stream.
Advanced Intelligent Systems
Artificial Intelligence and Data Analytics
Business Information Systems
Enterprise Systems Development
Geographic Information Systems
Quantum Information Science
Security and Cloud Computing
Software Systems Development
Web and Mobile Computing
To be an engineer, a Bachelor of Engineering degree is the standard qualification. Engineering consists of four broad disciplines: chemical, civil, electrical and mechanical engineering. Finer, more specific majors are also possible within each engineering branch.
Generally speaking, engineering is a hands-on STEM discipline. For this reason, a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) degree requires campus attendance and work placements. 100% online study is, however, supported for some para-professional and postgraduate programs.
Coastal and Ocean Engineering
Electronics and Telecommunications
Hydraulics (Water) Engineering
Mechanical and Manufacturing
Minerals and Metallurgical
Petroleum and Petrochemical
Source: Engineers Australia.
Mathematics is a building-block subject at university level, especially for STEM majors. Many students do loads of math without actually majoring in the discipline. Mathematics and statistics subjects feature in programs for business, education, engineering, information technology, science and social science.
Even within a "non-math" subject, mathematical concepts and methods may feature prominently (e.g. in a social research or marketing unit). If you want to major in mathematics, generally you do this as part of a science degree. However, mathematics specialisations also appear in other STEM categories.
Mathematics and Statistics
Sources: Course finder at the University of Melbourne and the science program at ANU.