Census reveals rise in proportion with higher qualifications

More than a quarter of England and Wales' adult population has a higher education qualification, although a North-South divide prevails, the 2011 census has revealed.

December 11, 2012

Published today, the census shows that per cent of England's over 16-year-olds are educated to level 4 standard, which covers bachelor's degrees or their equivalent and higher qualifications. This is up from 20 per cent in 2001. In Wales, the figure also rose seven percentage points, from 17 per cent to 24 per cent.

Across both England and Wales, 12.4 million residents aged 16 and over had achieved a qualification of level 4 or above in 2011, also representing per cent of respondents. This was a higher percentage than those who said they had "no qualifications" (23 per cent).

However, in Wales alone, the most popular level of educational achievement was "no qualifications", with 26 per cent falling into this category.

Regionally, London reported the highest levels of people holding advanced qualifications, with 38 per cent of usual residents holding at least a level 4 qualification, and 18 per cent of respondents saying they had no qualifications.

Away from the capital, the highest percentage of level 4 attainment was 30 per cent in the South East, with the lowest percentage found in the North East at 22 per cent. When London is included, there is a difference of 16 percentage points between the highest and lowest achieving areas.

According to the Office of National Statistics, which published the findings, increased levels of graduate employment opportunities in London and the South East may have contributed to the difference.


You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Most Commented

Monster behind man at desk

Despite all that’s been done to improve doctoral study, horror stories keep coming. Here three students relate PhD nightmares while two academics advise on how to ensure a successful supervision

celebrate, cheer, tef results

Emilie Murphy calls on those who challenged the teaching excellence framework methodology in the past to stop sharing their university ratings with pride

Sir Christopher Snowden, former Universities UK president, attacks ratings in wake of Southampton’s bronze award

Reflection of man in cracked mirror

To defend the values of reason from political attack we need to be more discriminating about the claims made in its name, says John Hendry

But the highest value UK spin-off companies mainly come from research-intensive universities, latest figures show