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

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

Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD)

Table 6 shows the median total earnings for Scottish domiciled first-degree graduates from Scottish HEIs five years after graduation split by Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) quintiles. It shows that earnings decrease with each SIMD quintile, from the highest earnings in Quintile 5 (20% least deprived areas) to the lowest earnings in Quintile 1 (20% most deprived areas). Graduates from Quintile 5 who graduated in 2013/14 earned £30,400 in 2019/20 compared to those from Quintile 1 who earned £27,100.

These differences in earnings between SIMD quintiles are consistent for both females and males. Female graduates from Quintile 5 who graduated in 2013/14 earned £29,300 in 2019/20, compared to those from Quintile 1 who earned £26,400. Similarly, male graduates from Quintile 5 who graduated in 2013/14 earned £31,500 in 2019/20, compared to those from Quintile 1 who earned £28,200.

The differences in earnings between quintiles may be partially reflected by subject choice and higher education institution. Graduates from the 20% most deprived areas are less likely to attend certain universities than those from other areas, and are less likely to do subjects like Medicine and Engineering which have higher median earnings.

Both the Commissioner for Fair Access’s annual report 2020: Fair Access to Higher Education: progress and challenges and the discussion paper on retention, outcomes and destinations provide evidence on subject and university choice for individuals from 20% most deprived areas: https://www.gov.scot/about/how-government-is-run/directorates/advanced-learning-and-science/commissioner-fair-access/

The quintile is determined by the SIMD rank associated with the graduates postcode when they enrolled into their studies, meaning that although the SIMD is based on the graduates’ HESA records in 2013/14, the postcode associated with that record may predate 2013/14.

Table 6: Median total earnings of graduates* from Scottish HEIs by SIMD and sex five years after graduation, 2019/20 tax year
Median total earnings (£)
SIMD Quintile Female graduates Male graduates All Graduates
Q1 - 20% Most Deprived 26,400 28,200 27,100
Q2 27,100 28,500 27,500
Q3 27,500 30,700 28,500
Q4 28,200 31,100 28,900
Q5 - 20% Least Deprived 29,300 31,500 30,400

*Scottish domiciled first-degree graduates 2013/14.

(1) Hours worked are not taken into account.

(2) SIMD 2012 has been used in this release, as this was the index available during the 2013/14 academic year.


Email: FHEstatistics@gov.scot

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