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Graduate Incomes

Volume 405: debated on Monday 12 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether he plans further studies on the comparative lifetime incomes of graduates and non-graduates, with particular reference to (a) courses studied and (b) subsequent sector of employment. [110914]

I have no immediate plans to produce estimates of the lifetime incomes or premiums of graduates broken down by courses studied and subsequent sector of employment. There are, however, plans to publish work later in the year which explores the variation in graduate lifetime earnings by type of institution attended.As we make clear in the recent White Paper, those with higher education qualifications earn on average around 50 per cent. more than those who do not. The White Paper also refers to other well-founded research evidence which shows that there is substantial variation in the percentage returns to higher education by subject of degree

1 , and there will inevitably be variations in graduate earnings by sector of employment.

1 For example, see Walker and Zhu (2002), The Returns to Education: Evidence from the Labour Force Survey.