DLHE: three quarters of graduates in employment

Over three quarters of 2013/14 UK and EU leavers were working six months after graduation according to this year’s annual Destination of Leavers from Higher Education in the United Kingdom statistical first release from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

Of these leavers, 68% were working in the UK, 4% were working overseas, and 6% were working and studying. A further 12% were involved in further study only and 6% were unemployed. There were 424,375 UK and EU leavers (398,105 UK, 26,270 EU) whose destinations were known in 2013/14.

75% of full-time first degree leavers from 2013/14 were in employment six months after graduation. Of those in employment, 67% were working in the UK, 3% were working overseas and 5% were in employment as well as further study. 14% of graduates were in further study only and and just 7% were unemployed (down from 8% in 2012/13). There were 257,395 (244,025 in 2012/13) full-time first degree UK and EU leavers whose destinations were known in 2013/14.

Wonkhe HESA Destination Leavers FT

82% of part-time first degree leavers in 2013/14 were in employment six months after graduation (74% working in the UK, 1% working overseas and 7% working alongside further study). 5% of part-time leavers were in further study only and 4% of part-time leavers were unemployed. There were 22,465 (23,615 in 2012/13) part-time first degree leavers whose destinations were known in 2013/14.

Wonkhe HESA Destination Leavers PT

68% of full-time first degree graduates who were employed in the UK, were employed in posts classified as ‘Professional employment’. The remaining 32% were working in posts classified as non-professional. Of those in non-professional posts, 11% were employed in sales and customer service.

In 2013/14, 7% of all male leavers (both full-time and part-time) were unemployed, compared to 5% of all females. Unemployment for male leavers has dropped slightly with  8% of male leavers were unemployed in 2012/13 (5% of female leavers were unemployed in 2012/13).

Unemployment for full-time first degree leavers varied between subjects. Science subjects had slightly lower rates of unemployment (6%) compared to other subject areas (7%). Particularly low were; Medicine & dentistry (less than 1%, although it should be noted numbers are small), Education (3%), Veterinary science (3%) and Subjects allied to medicine (3%). Higher levels of unemployment were seen in Computer science (11%) and Mass communications & documentation (9%).

70% of first degree graduates in full time paid employment disclosed their salary. The mean salary for 2013/14 was £21,500 (median of £21,000) compared to £21,000 in 2012/13 (median of £20,500).

Female leavers were earning a mean salary of £20,500 (median of £20,000) while male leavers were earning a mean of £22,500 (median of £21,000). 19% of full-time first degree UK female graduates were earning over £25,000 six months after graduation compared to 30% of male graduates.

Wonkhe HESA Destination leavers male female salary

Average salaries varied by subject studied too; “The largest median salaries was reported by leavers who studied Medicine and dentistry (£30,000), Veterinary science (£26,000) and Engineering and technology (£25,000). Response to the salary question also varied by subject area, 80% of Mathematical science leavers declared their salary compared to 58% for Creative arts and design and 60% for Medicine and dentistry” says the report.

“There is a considerable difference in the destinations of full-time leavers depending on the qualifications they had achieved” says the report. 72% of full-time doctorate leavers were in employment compared to 67% for first degree leavers in 2013/14. Over half of foundation degree leavers entered further study (44% in further study only and 18% in work alongside further study). 19% of first degree leavers undertook further study (14% in further study only and 5% in work alongside further study).

Wonkhe HESA Destination Leavers by qualification

Doctorate and postgraduate degree leavers had higher percentages employed overseas with 13% of doctorate leavers and 9% of postgraduate leavers in overseas work compared to 3% of first degree leavers.

The majority of full-time UK domiciled leavers who entered employment in the UK gained employment in the same country in which they studied. 98% of leavers form English HEPs, 57% of leavers from Welsh HEPs, 85% of leavers from Scottish HEPs and 90% of leavers from HEPs in Northern Ireland were employed in the country they studied in.

Wonkhe HESA Destination Leavers by country

Similarly, the majority of full-time UK domiciled leavers who entered employment in the UK gained employment in their original country of domicile. 98% of English domiciled leavers were employed within England, 69% of Welsh domiciled students were employed in Wales, 88% of Scottish domiciled students were employed in Scotland and 73% of Northern Ireland domiciled students were employed in Northern Ireland.

Read the full statistical first release here.

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One response to “DLHE: three quarters of graduates in employment

  1. Hello Emily

    Very nice piece

    Just a few notes to clarify a point or two. 7% unemployment is historically pretty low straight out of university. Generally, if the graduate market has recovered completely from recession, we’d expect to see it between about 5.5% and 6.5% (HESA round the figure for their release – we’ll get more detailed data next month). It suggests that the jobs market for graduates is getting close to pre-recession states.

    Medicine and dentistry numbers aren’t particularly small, and unemployment rates really are always that low. Numbers are centrally planned, so unsurprisingly, very nearly everyone gets jobs. UKCES data suggest shortages. Indeed, the fall in the number of entrants to the labour market from these subjects is a cause for concern.

    The Foundation Degree leavers opting for further study are, in the main, going on to complete the third year of an undergraduate Honours degree. It’s interesting that the proportion doing this seems to have gone up despite an improvement in the labour market. I’m not sure that they were planned to be used as a stepladder to standard 3 year undergraduate degrees, but that’s what many of their graduates seem to do.

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