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Mature Students

Volume 465: debated on Wednesday 24 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what percentage of the adult population is participating in university education as mature students. (160178)

The table contains the latest available figures for the age specific initial participation rates for ages 17 to 60. The age specific initial participation rates cover English-domiciled first time entrants to HE courses, which are expected to last for at least six months, at UK higher education institutions and English, Scottish and Welsh further education colleges, and who remain on their course for at least six months.

The higher education initial participation rate (HEIPR) is the sum of the age specific initial participation rates for ages 17 to 30. The 2005-06 HEIPR is 43 per cent. and equates roughly to the probability that a 17-year-old will participate in higher education by age 30. The sum of the 2005-06 age specific initial participation rates for ages 17-60 is 53 per cent. and equates roughly to the probability that a 17-year-old will participate in higher education by age 60.

Both students and the general population aged up to 20 are deemed to be young, over 20 mature. The age specific initial participation rates for ages 21 to 60 are therefore indicative of the age participation rates of the mature population. These do not reflect numbers that have participated in higher education, rather, they represent initial participants in higher education in 2005-06.

Individual higher education initial participation rates for 17 to 60 year olds in 2005-06

Age

Rate (percentage)

17

0.3

18

21.3

19

9.7

20

2.6

21

1.4

22

1.1

23

1.0

24

0.9

25

0.8

26

0.8

27

0.8

28

0.7

29

0.7

30

0.6

31

0.6

32

0.6

33

0.6

34

0.5

35

0.6

36

0.5

37

0.5

38

0.5

39

0.5

40

0.4

41

0.4

42

0.4

43

0.4

44

0.4

45

0.3

46

0.3

47

0.3

48

0.3

49

0.2

50

0.2

51

0.2

52

0.2

53

0.2

54

0.1

55

0.1

56

0.1

57

0.1