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Engineering: Graduates

Department for Education written question – answered on 29th October 2019.

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Photo of Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts Chair, Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee

To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the number of undergraduates who studied engineering at university who now work in the engineering industry post-graduation.

Photo of Baroness Berridge Baroness Berridge Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)

Information on the destinations of students 6 months after leaving UK higher education is collected and published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) as part of the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey.

Latest statistics were published in June 2018 for students leaving their courses in the 2016/17 academic year, and are available at the following link:

https://www.hesa.ac.uk/news/28-06-2018/sfr250-higher-education-leaver-statistics.

As part of the DLHE survey, HESA records the Standard Occupation Classification category of those respondents who were in employment. Of the UK and EU-domiciled leavers from undergraduate courses in engineering who responded to the survey, and were in employment 6 months after graduating, 49.8% were estimated to be employed in roles categorised as ‘engineering professionals’.

The share of engineering leavers employed as ‘engineering professionals’ varies across engineering subjects. For that reason, a more detailed subject breakdown has been provided in the table.

Share of engineering leavers1 in engineering occupations2 six months after graduation

UK higher education institutions

2016/17 leavers

Engineering subject

Count3 of survey respondents in employment

Share of survey respondents employed as ‘engineering professionals’

General engineering

1,220

45.8%

Civil engineering

1,860

68.0%

Mechanical engineering

3,520

57.1%

Aerospace engineering

950

34.8%

Naval architecture

40

58.5%

Electronic & electrical engineering

2,475

39.3%

Production & manufacturing engineering

445

39.9%

Chemical, process & energy engineering

885

38.3%

Others in engineering

45

37.4%

Total Engineering

11,450

49.8%

Source: DfE Analysis of the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey

1. Graduates in engineering-based subjects have been defined using the principal categories H1 to H9 of the Joint Academic Coding System (JACS). More information on JACS codes can be found at the following link: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/documentation/jacs.

2. Graduates categorised as being in Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) group 212 are considered to be in the ‘Engineering Professionals’ category. More information on SOC DLHE codes can be found at the following link: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/documentation/occupational/soc2010.

3. Counts are on the basis of full-person-equivalents. Where a student is studying more than one subject, they are apportioned between the subjects that make up their course.

4. Figures are rounded to the nearest 5.

Statistics about students leaving courses in the 2017/18 academic year will be published from HESA’s new Graduate Outcomes survey in April 2020. A key difference with this new survey is that employment activities will be measured 15 months after graduation, rather than after 6 months.

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