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Graduate activities and characteristics: previous study characteristics

HE Graduate Outcomes Data Graduates' activities and characteristics

Experimental statistics

On this page: Activity by previous study characteristics | Industries and occupationsGraduates in further study

The 2018/19 Graduate Outcomes survey was sent to graduates who qualified from their higher education course between August 2018 and July 2019. Surveying commenced in December 2019 for the first of four cohorts. Shortly after surveying began for the second cohort, the World Health Organisation declared the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. This meant that many graduates were completing the survey at various points during the pandemic. The Graduate Outcomes quality report details further information about survey alterations due to the pandemic.

The quality of data used in this release is not thought to be adversely affected by the pandemic. Results and trends emerging from the data this year do however reflect the circumstances under which it was collected. In particular, small changes around the activities of graduates are apparent (including an increase in the proportion of graduates unemployed and a drop in those taking time out to travel). Further details about the analysis we have undertaken to explore the impact of the pandemic on the 2018/19 Graduate Outcomes dataset is provided in an insight briefing: The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Graduate Outcomes 2018/19

The tables and charts on this page provide information on graduates from higher education. Some information is taken from our Higher Education Graduate Outcomes Statistics: UK, 2018/19 Statistical Bulletin. The results from the Graduate Outcomes survey have been linked to the HESA student records and data from the Individualised Learner Record (ILR) and Consolidated Data Return (CDR) to provide the characteristics of the graduates' courses.

Accompanying this release is a suite of supporting information in the form of a user guide. This contains guidance on the history and background to the survey, survey methodology and the Graduate Outcomes quality report.

All tables and charts include a link underneath allowing you to download the data you see on screen, including filters, and will also include a link to download the complete source data as a machine-readable csv file.

Activity by previous study characteristics

Key fact: A greater proportion of graduates who obtained a first class honours were in full-time further study during the census week compared with graduates who achieved other degree classifications.

Figure 9 - Graduate activity by classification of first degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The census point of the survey is at 15 months after graduation which means that many graduates may have undertaken other qualifications such as Master’s degrees during this period. At the point of the survey some may only just be completing those further qualifications. The interim study filter allows you to include or exclude graduates who are likely to have spent most of the 15 month period in full-time study from tables and charts. Whether you choose to include or exclude these graduates will depend on your intended use for the statistics. For example, if you are assessing the rates of unemployment of graduates it may not be fair to compare graduates who are likely to have spent most of the 15 months in the labour market with those who have only recently entered the labour market. In this example it may be more sensible to exclude graduates who have spent most of the 15 months in full-time study.

Combined is only used for students on courses which do not specify a subject specialism. The majority of students in the combined subject area study at The Open University.

Figure 10 - Graduate outcomes by subject area of degree and activity

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

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Given that we are reporting on a subset of graduates from the total target population in this survey (i.e. those who responded to the survey – the sample), we cannot be completely certain that any statistics we create from that sample are exactly the same as the statistics we could have created if every single graduate in our target population had responded. A confidence interval gives us a statistical way to indicate a range of values within which we can be reasonably confident the ‘true’ (i.e. total population) value would fall. For Graduate Outcomes data, 95% confidence intervals are used which means that there is a 95% chance that the interval calculated from the sample covers the true value. The width of the confidence interval gives some idea about how precise an estimated value is: the wider the range from the stated percentage, the less the precision. More information on confidence intervals and survey weighting is available in the methodology statement.

Table 20 - Graduate activities by provider and subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 

 

Table 20 - Graduate activities by provider and subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
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Table 20 - Graduate activities by provider and subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
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Industries and occupations

Figure 11 - Standard industrial classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

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Figure 11 - Standard industrial classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 11 - Standard industrial classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 11 - Standard industrial classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 11 - Standard industrial classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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The UK Standard Industrial Classification of Economic Activities (SIC) is used to classify industries by the type of activity they do. Graduates are asked what their employer makes or does. This information is coded using the SIC2007 coding frame. The codes are grouped together for publication. See Standard Industrial Classification: SIC2007 for the full list of codes and how they are grouped together.

The ‘work population marker’ allows you to view data either based on all graduates who report one or more work-based activities, or alternatively to focus on those graduates who state that one of these activities is their most important activity. Whether you choose to use data for graduates where work is an activity or focus on just those where work is a most important activity will depend on your intended use for the statistics.

The 'work type marker' allows you to filter the data by the type of work the graduate reported as being their most important activity.

Figure 12 - Standard occupational classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

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Figure 12 - Standard occupational classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 12 - Standard occupational classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 12 - Standard occupational classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Figure 12 - Standard occupational classification of graduates entering work in the UK by subject area of degree

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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The UK Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system is used to classify workers by their occupations. Jobs are classified by their skill level and content. Graduates are asked what their job title is. This information is coded using the SOC2020 coding frame. The codes are grouped together for publication. See Standard Occupational Classification: SOC2020 for the full list of codes and how they are grouped together. Major groups 1 to 3 are grouped together as 'Highly skilled'. Major groups 4 to 6 are grouped together as 'Medium skilled' and 7 to 9 are grouped as 'Low skilled'.

View more detailed tables on graduates in work

Graduates in further study

Table 15 - Graduates in further study by subject area of former degree and level of qualification aimed for in further study during census week

Academic years 2017/18 to 2018/19

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Next: Graduates' salaries

Return to: Personal characteristics

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