Longitudinal Education Outcomes (LEO) from Universities: 2019/20: Scotland

Earnings information for UK-domiciled first-degree graduates from Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Scotland.


Sex

Figure 2 shows the median total earnings for UK-domiciled first-degree graduates from Scottish HEIs five years after graduation split by subject area and sex.

Median earnings can vary greatly between subject and sex, and some subjects are more commonly studied by either males or females. For example, the majority of graduates from ‘Engineering’ and ‘Physics and Astronomy’ - which are typically higher-earning subjects, are male, whereas the majority of graduates from ‘Health and social care’ and ‘Nursing and midwifery’ – which are typically lower-earning subjects, are female. This is not the case for every subject, however given there are proportionally more males than females graduating from high earning subjects, it is likely to contribute towards some of the variation in earnings.

It shows that male graduates from 2013/14 earned on average £2,500 more than female graduates, with male graduates earning £30,700 in 2019/20 compared to £28,200 for female graduates.

Comparing this to previous equivalent cohorts of graduates from Scottish HEIs, male graduates from 2012/13 earned on average £2,500 more than female graduates (£29,900 for males and £27,400 for females), and male graduates from 2011/12 earned on average £3,000 more than female graduates (£29,600 for males and £26,600 for females).

In 27 out of 35 subjects, males have higher median earnings than females five years after graduation. The largest difference is seen in ‘Pharmacology, toxicology and pharmacy’, where male graduates had median total earnings of £36,200 compared to £31,500 for female graduates.

Female median earnings only exceed male median earnings in 6 out of 35 subjects five years after graduation. Of these subjects, the largest difference is seen in ‘Media, journalism and communications’ where females had median total earnings of £25,600 compared to £23,400 for male graduates.

Due to small numbers of male graduates for subjects within ‘Celtic Studies’, the figures have been supressed for both males and females.

‘English Studies’ was the only subject where the median earnings between males and females was equal, with those graduating in this subject earning £25,300.

Figure 2: Distributions of total earnings of graduates* from Scottish HEIs by subject area, five year after graduation (lower quartile, median and upper quartile), female and male, 2019/20 tax year
A graphic provides a comparison of distributions of total earnings by subject area, five years after graduation, for males and females from Scottish Higher Education Institutions. All figures in the graphic relate to median earnings in 2019 to 2020 tax year of UK domiciled first degree graduates in the 2013 to 2014 academic year, which is five years after graduation. The distribution is shown by the lower quartile, median, and upper quartile for each subject area.

*UK-domiciled first-degree graduates 2013/14.

(1) Hours worked are not taken into account.

(2) Celtic Studies not included due to small cohort size.

Table 1: Median total earnings of graduates* from Scottish HEIs by subject studied and sex five years after graduation, 2019/20 tax year
Median total earnings (£)
Subject Female graduates Male graduates All Graduates
Medicine & dentistry 49,400 52,300 50,500
Economics 39,500 39,900 39,500
Engineering 33,900 35,900 35,900
Veterinary sciences 34,400 38,800 35,100
Mathematical sciences 34,800 34,400 34,800
Education and teaching 33,700 34,800 34,400
Pharmacology, toxicology and pharmacy 31,500 36,200 32,900
Physics and astronomy 32,700 32,900 32,900
Architecture, building and planning 30,400 34,000 32,600
Medical sciences 30,700 34,800 31,800
Celtic studies x x 30,700
Law 29,300 33,300 30,700
Chemistry 30,000 30,700 30,400
Health and social care 30,000 33,300 30,400
Computing 26,400 30,400 29,600
Nursing & midwifery 29,300 33,700 29,600
Geography, earth and environmental studies 28,500 29,600 29,300
Languages and area studies 28,500 31,500 29,300
Politics 27,500 28,900 28,200
Allied health 27,100 28,900 27,500
History and archaeology 27,800 27,100 27,500
Business and management 26,000 29,600 27,100
General, applied and forensic sciences 25,600 27,100 26,400
Biosciences 26,400 25,300 26,000
Sport and exercise sciences 25,300 26,000 26,000
Philosophy and religious studies 25,300 25,600 25,600
English studies 25,300 25,300 25,300
Psychology 25,300 24,500 25,100
Sociology, social policy and anthropology 24,200 26,700 24,900
Media, journalism and communications 25,600 23,400 24,500
Agriculture, food and related subjects 22,300 25,900 23,800
Materials & technology 22,300 23,100 23,100
Combined and general studies 21,600 24,200 22,300
Creative arts and design 22,000 23,100 22,300
Performing arts 21,200 20,500 20,500
All 28,200 30,700 29,300

*UK-domiciled first-degree graduates 2013/14.

(1) Hours worked are not taken into account.

(2) ‘x’ denotes that data have been suppressed to prevent disclosure. All figures associated with cohorts smaller than 11 have been suppressed, and further suppression has been implemented to prevent disclosure by subtraction.

Disability

Table 2 shows the median total earnings for UK-domiciled first-degree graduates from Scottish HEIs five years after graduation split by disability (detailed level). It shows that graduates in 2013/14 with no known disability were earning £29,300 in 2019/20, compared to £26,400 for graduates with a disability. Graduates with no known disability also have higher earnings than graduates with any type of disability or impairment.

Graduates with mental health disability categorised as neurodivergent (such as ASD, dyslexia, or dyspraxia) earned £27,500, whereas graduates with a non-neurodivergent mental health disability (such as depression, schizophrenia or anxiety) earned £23,800. Those with a physical disability earned £27,100, and those with another type of disability or multiple disabilities earned £24,200. Due to the data collection methods,where graduates have self-reported as having multiple disabilities, each condition will not be recorded separately. This may have an impact on graduates who have conditions that are associated with multiple disabilities or older graduates who may be more likely to have multiple disabilities.

Table 2: Median total earnings of graduates* from Scottish HEIs by disability (detailed level) five years after graduation, 2019/20 tax year
Disability (detailed level) HESA codes - see (2) Median total earnings (£)
Mental health disability (Neurodivergent) 10, 11, 51, 53 27,500
Mental health disability (non-Neurodivergent) 06, 55 23,800
Other or multiple disabilities 08, 96 24,200
Physical disability 02, 03, 04, 05, 07, 54, 56, 57, 58 27,100
Disabled all codes above 26,400
No known disability 00, 99 29,300

*UK-domiciled first-degree graduates 2013/14.

(1) Hours worked are not taken into account.

(2) In line with HESA’s collection policy, where it is not known whether or not a student has a disability, the student will be recorded as ‘No known disability’.

See HESA’s website for HESA codes used and more details: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c13051/a/disable.

Table 3 shows the median total earnings for UK-domiciled first-degree graduates from Scottish HEIs five years after graduation split by sex and disability (high-level). It shows that those who are disabled earn less than those with no known disability for both males and females. Males who graduated in 2013/14 with no known disability were earning £31,100 in 2019/20 compared to £27,800 for male graduates with a disability. Females who graduated in 2013/14 with no known disability were earning £28,200 in 2019/20 compared to £25,800 for female graduates with a disability.

Disability status is determined by the graduates’ own self-assessment. See ‘Methodology’ section for more information.

Table 3: Median total earnings of graduates* from Scottish HEIs by disability (high-level) and sex five years after graduation, 2019/20 tax year
Median total earnings (£)
Disability (high-level) Female graduates Male graduates All Graduates
Disabled 25,800 27,800 26,400
No known disability 28,200 31,100 29,300

*UK-domiciled first-degree graduates 2013/14.

(1) Hours worked are not taken into account.

(2) In line with HESA’s collection policy, where it is not known whether or not a student has a disability, the student will be recorded as ‘No known disability’.

See HESA’s website for more details: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/collection/c13051/a/disable.

Contact

Email: FHEstatistics@gov.scot

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