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National Indicator: Graduates

l Increase the proportion of graduates in positive destinations

Indicator Measure
Percentage of graduates in positive destinations 6 months after graduating

Current Status

In 2006-07 the percentage of Scots graduates in positive destinations 6 months after completing their course was 71.3%. This percentage fell year on year to 63.5% in 2010-11.

For the following three years the percentage increased, to 67.6% in 2013-14.  before decreasing to 67.2% in 2014-15. These recent annual changes were smaller than 2 percentage points, which means the status of the indicator has remained ‘maintaining performance’.

2002-03 to 2014-15

* Please note that changes were made to the DLHE Questionnaire issued to 2011-12 leavers. Please see Technical Note for details.

Source: Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)
The data for this chart is available at the bottom of the page.

Last Update: 25 October 2016
Next Update: October 2017

Increase the proportion of graduates in positive destinations

Why is this National Indicator important?
What will influence this National Indicator?
What is the Government's role?
How is Scotland performing?
What more do we know about this National Indicator?
Criteria for recent change
Further information
Who are our partners?
Related Strategic Objectives

Why is this National Indicator important?

The Government's purpose, of delivering a significantly higher level of sustainable economic growth for the benefit of all, requires Scotland to have an increasingly skilled workforce and an economy in which the skills of all are fully utilised. The great majority of Scottish graduates ultimately find professional and managerial level jobs. As people with graduate and post graduate skills will increasingly drive the step change in Scotland's economy, it is crucial that the learning and skills they have acquired during their time in higher education are put to immediate and effective use in the workplace. The match between demanding employers and highly skilled graduates is a key priority.

It is therefore important to ensure that all students have the opportunity to acquire and develop the skills employers need in order that they can make an immediate and positive impact on joining the workforce.

What will influence this National Indicator?

For more graduates and postgraduates to achieve positive destinations, there needs to be an increased demand for graduate and postgraduate skills within the Scottish economy and graduates in turn need to bring to employers the skills and capacities that successful businesses require.

The indicator will show a positive movement if:

  • Scottish employers are ambitious in taking advantage of the skills of our graduates
  • prospective students get the right advice on how to realise their aspirations and fulfil their potential and
  • they learn skills in our universities that help them find high quality employment in Scotland

The design of higher education courses that provide students with employability skills, whether through including elements of work experience or by other means will have a role in this, as will effective information advice and guidance to help students select courses which will meet and build their capacities and lead to positive outcomes, and to identify career opportunities during the time that they are studying.

What is the Government's role?

As part of its wider Skills utilisation work government can begin to work with business and other partners, to increase the demand for skills as a function of ambitious, innovative businesses helping to create a virtuous circle whereby a thriving economy demands more graduates who in turn further drive forward Scotland's economic performance.

The design and content of university courses is the responsibility of individual institutions. Government can, however, through its guidance to the Scottish Funding Council, encourage developing the employability of graduates, whether through the adoption of specific employability programmes or as an integral part of HE courses. Working through Skills Development Scotland and universities and colleges, government will support the improvement of careers information advice and guidance services for prospective students, graduates and employers.

How is Scotland performing?

In 2014-15, 67.2% of Scots graduates were in positive destinations 6 months after graduating. This is 0.4 percentage points lower than the comparable figure of 67.6% for students graduating in 2013-14, indicating a maintaining performance.

The data is available at the bottom of the page.

What more do we know about this National Indicator?

Historically, the percentage of graduates in positive destinations six months after graduating has been higher for females than for males. Since 2002-3, the gap has fluctuated between 4 and 7 percentage points with the exception of 2010-11 and 2011-12 when the gap narrowed to 2.2 and 3.3 percentage points respectively.

In 2014-15, 69.3% of female Scots graduates and 63.9% of male Scots graduates were in positive destinations 6 months after graduating.

The data is available at the bottom of the page.

Criteria for recent change

The evaluation of performance is based on the following consideration. Any difference in the percentage within +/- 2 percentage points of the previous year's figure suggests that the position is more likely to be maintaining than showing any change. An increase of 2 percentage points or more suggests the position is improving; whereas a decrease of 2 percentage points or more suggests the position is worsening. The threshold of 2 percentage points chosen is based on an assessment of the data available at this time, and may need to be reviewed as more information becomes available in the future.

Further Information

For information on general methodological approach, please click here.

Scotland Performs Technical Note

Who are our partners?

Business Organisations

Colleges

Scottish Funding Council

Sector Skills Councils

Skills Development Scotland

Universities

Related Strategic Objectives

Smarter

Healthier

Wealthier and Fairer

 

View National Indicator Data

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Title:Increase the proportion of graduates in positive destinations
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