The Department has today published the following research report: Survey of Further Education College Leavers: Academic Year 2015/16.
This report presents findings from the third annual Northern Ireland Survey of Further Education (FE) College Leavers. Undertaken approximately six months after course completion, it provides a snapshot of the immediate added value to leavers of completing and achieving a regulated qualification in the FE sector during the academic year 2015/16.
Key points include:
- Almost half (47.6%) of FE College leavers were in employment six months after achieving their 2015/16 qualification, up from 39.1% before their course began; conversely, the proportion in learning had fallen from 44.7% to 36.8%.
- The vast majority (95.1%) of leavers agreed that completing their 2015/16 course has had a positive impact on them, among the main non-economic gains being: ‘boosted confidence’ (84.6% of leavers); ‘made new friends /met new people’ (83.5%); and ‘increased self-esteem’ (69.7%).
- Over half (51.8%) of the FE College leavers in employment said their 2015/16 qualification is relevant to their current job, while almost a quarter (24.2%) said they could not have obtained/stayed in their employment without completing the course.
- Among FE College leavers in employment who have been with the same employer since before their 2015/16 course, almost three-fifths (56.9%) said they are better at their jobs, a quarter (25.7%) said they are doing a job with more responsibilities, while 13.2% said they have been promoted - with the majority attributing their progress to the course at least to some extent.
- Most (86.2%) FE College leavers still in learning had also been in learning before the course they had completed in 2015/16, while over four-fifths (82.6%) are now studying towards a higher level qualification.
- In line with recent economic trends, the proportion of FE College leavers who classified themselves as unemployed six months after completing their course in 2015/16 (5.5%) was lower than that for the 2013/14 cohort (7.6%).
This report, along with tables (including notes and technical details) and a summary of findings are available to download from the Department’s website: https://www.economy-ni.gov.uk/articles/further-education-research
Notes to editors:
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