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Higher education financially benefits women sooner than men, study finds

Women who have attended university earn more five years after graduation than women who have not, whereas the opposite trend is observed for men, a study published by think tank Onward has revealed.

While women who have graduated tend to earn more, men earn less five years after graduation than those who opted for vocational qualifications or an occupation instead of university.

The analysis by Onward was based on the Longitudinal Education Outcomes published by the Department of Education (DfE). The results include tax records of thousands of university graduates who have graduated between one, three and five years.

These statistics come amidst the release of the Augar review, which has proposed a cut in tuition fees to £7,500, amongst other measures.

Prior to the publication of the review, Education Secretary Damian Hinds criticised “low value, low quality” courses for causing students to enter occupations that are poorly paid, rendering them unable to pay back their student loans.

Men that have undertaken degrees such as Creative Arts, Communications, English, Agriculture, Psychology, Philosophy and Languages are likely to earn lower than the national living wage five years post-graduation

According to Onward, men that have undertaken degrees such as Creative Arts, Communications, English, Agriculture, Psychology, Philosophy and Languages are likely to earn lower than the national living wage five years post-graduation.

Onward also discovered that certain universities made male students more susceptible to this result. Male students with Creative Arts degrees from the University of Bolton earn £14,400 on average five years after graduating, which is lower than the full-time national living wage.

Regarding the findings, Universities UK (UUK)’s Chief Executive Alistair Jarvis stated that it is “irresponsible” to dissuade young people from studying at university when there are clear benefits of doing so.

Mr Jarvis emphasised that salaries should not be a sole measure of value, as many graduates occupy important roles in public and charitable sectors that make significant contributions to society.

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