This item was published during the term of a previous administration that ended in April 2007
Participation in education by 16 to 21 year olds
Information on the participation of 16-21 year olds in school, further and higher education in Scotland for academic sessions 1990/91 and 1997/98 to 2000/01 is published today.
Some information is also provided on those aged 22 and over.
This information replaces that withdrawn from the Statistics (Publications) section of the website in August 2002 and contains revised figures, relating to students in Further Education colleges (in both further and higher education).
The methodology previously used to derive headcount numbers of students from multiple enrolment figures, has been improved. This has resulted in a downward adjustment of 0.1 per cent in participation in higher education for all age groups in the years 1997/98 to 2000/01, and a downward adjustment of 1.3 per cent in participation in further education for all age groups, over the same period.
In addition, the population estimates have been updated, due to revisions provided by the General Register Office for Scotland.The main findings are:
- In 2000/01, 62 per cent of the 16-21 year old age group participated in some form of full or part time education. This represents an increase of 17 percentage points compared to 1990/91, although levels have stabilised in recent years. This increase can be attributed to a rise in the number of young people continuing into post compulsory schooling, together with a significant increase in the number participating in Higher Education. (Table 1)
- Overall the percentage of 22+ year olds participating in education has risen slightly from 7 per cent in 1997/98 to 8 per cent in 2000/01. This can be largely attributed to the rise in the percentage of females in this age group participating in education (Table 1)
- The percentage of 17 year olds staying on at school has increased by 12 percentage points over the past 10 years, from 29 per cent in 1990/91 to 41 per cent in 2000/01. (Table 1)
- A larger percentage of females than males aged 16-21 participated in education in 2000/01. Sixty four per cent of females aged 16-21 years participated compared to sixty per cent of males. For the 22 and over age group, 9 per cent of females participated compared to 7 per cent of males. (Table 1)
- In School Education, a higher percentage of females than males (aged 16-18) participated in 2000/01. For females aged 16-18 years, 40 per cent participated, compared with 35 per cent of males. Please note that the population estimates in Table 2 used the 16-18 age group whereas Table 1 used the 16-21 grouping. (Table 2)
- A greater percentage of males than females undertook full or part time Further Education in 2000/01 (17 per cent of males compared to 14 per cent of females for the 16 to 21 age group). In contrast, a higher percentage of females participated in Higher Education (31 per cent of females compared to 26 per cent of males in the same age group). (Tables 3&4)
This is a National Statistics publication. National Statistics are produced to high professional standards set out in the National Statistics Code of Practice. They undergo regular quality assurance reviews to ensure that they meet customer needs. They are produced free from any political interference.Data SourcesPopulation
Population figures are based on the mid-year estimates from General Register Office for Scotland (GROS), adjusted to produce end-year population estimates. The estimates used in this publication have been updated due to revisions by GROS. Detailed information on population data is available through the GROS website.
Information on school pupil numbers is derived from data collected in the annual September school census. The school figures cover pupils in all publicly funded and independent secondary schools in Scotland, including special schools.
Age is as at December 31. For secondary schools, a breakdown of pupil numbers by age was collected in the census up to 1993/94; from 1994/95 onwards the age breakdown has been estimated. For special schools, pupil numbers are available by age.
For the purposes of this analysis, school pupils are assumed to be full-time in the school system, though in practice some may spend part of their school week studying at a further education college. These pupils have been counted only in the school statistics.
It should be noted that pupils who left school at the winter leaving date are not included in the figures shown for schools if they left school once they became 16. However, they will be included in the further education totals if they went on to attend a further education course in the relevant academic year.Further Education
Information on further education covers students who were undertaking non-advanced courses in either Scottish further education colleges (FECs) or higher education institutions (HEIs). FECs are defined to cover FE colleges and local authority day colleges. These institutions provide both further and higher education courses - see notes under higher education below, for a definition of these courses.
Since July 1999, information on activity in FECs has been collected by the Scottish Further Education Funding Council (SFEFC).
The collection of data on further education students in higher education institutions (HEIs) was transferred to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in 1994. Prior to this, information was obtained from the HEIs and the Universities' Statistical Record.
The rest of the text in this section describes analysis of data for students attending FECs, whether undertaking further or higher education courses.
Student numbers are based on a count of students attending over the whole session (Aug 1 - July 31). Age is calculated at December 31 of the relevant session. Where student age is unknown, ages have been allocated based on the distribution of known ages.
Full time students include sandwich students. Overseas students (including those from other countries in the UK) are included in the figures. The following groups of students are excluded from the figures:-
a) withdrawals (students who don't complete more than a quarter of the course);
b) Scottish students studying outwith Scotland.
The figures relating to participation in further education within this Statistics Publication Notice excludes students who are based in Scottish schools.
The collection of data from FECs in Scotland involves students being counted once for each course on which they enrol. This is of particular relevance for further education conducted in FECs, due to the nature of further education, which facilitates multiple enrolments. Participation by individual students must then be estimated by attempting to collapse multiple enrolments into individual students, so that students are counted only once as participating in either further or higher education.
Due to the nature of the data, this is a complex procedure. The methodology which was previously used to obtain data on participation in further and higher education in FECs has now been improved. This has resulted in a downward adjustment of 1.3 per cent in participation in further education for all age groups, in years 1997/98 to 2000/01, and a downward adjustment of 0.1 per cent in participation in higher education for all age groups, over the same period. Further, this has resulted in a downward adjustment of 0.6 per cent in the participation of 16-21 year olds in further education, in the years 1998/99 to 2000/01 (Table 3). Similarly, there has been a downward adjustment of 0.1 per cent in the participation of 16-21 year olds in higher education in the years 1998/99 to 2000/01 (Table 4). Higher Education
Information on higher education covers students who were undertaking higher education courses either in HEIs or FECs. In 2000/01 there were 19 higher education institutions in Scotland. The Open University also offers courses to Scottish students, who are not included in the numbers for this publication. Since 1994/95 the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) has supplied the information for all students at HEIs.
The following definition of a higher education course, derived from the Further and Higher Education (Scotland) Act 1992, is used in the collection of these statistics:
a) a course at a higher level in preparation for a higher national diploma or certificate
b) a first degree course
c) a course for the education and training of teachers
d) a course of post-degree studies (including a higher degree course)
e) a course at a higher level in preparation for a qualification from a professional body
f) a course at a higher level not falling within any of the paragraphs (a) to (e) above
For the purposes of (a), (e) and (f) above, a course is regarded as providing education at a 'higher level' if its standard is higher than the standard of courses in preparation for examinations for:
a) the Scottish Certificate of Education at higher grade
b) the Certificate of Sixth Year Studies
c) the General Certificate of Education of England and Wales or Northern Ireland at advanced level
d) the Scottish Qualifications Authority National Certificate.
Courses at FECs or HEIs which are at a lower level than higher education as defined above are treated as further education in this analysis.
Student numbers are session counts by age at 31 December. Overseas students (including those from other countries in the UK) are included in the figures. The following groups of students are excluded:
) Scottish students studying outwith Scotland
b) Open University students
c) Writing-up students
d) Students on sabbatical
e) Dormant students
f) Postdoctoral students
g) Incoming visiting and exchange students from overseas
Level of Education
All figures relating to higher and further education refer to the level of the course of study and not the type of institution attended.Percentages
The percentage of ages and age groups has been calculated using the actual number of students against the appropriate population of that age or age groups obtained from the population data obtained from GROS, Scotland.Rounding
Percentages within tables have been individually rounded and therefore may not sum to the totals shown.