Surveys are sound

February 14, 2003

Jim Taylor's criticism of performance indicators for the employment of graduates is based on a number of inaccurate assumptions ("Graduate jobs data deemed flawed", THES , February 7).

The article alleges that "methods used to collect the data differ between universities, and there is no accuracy check". This is incorrect.

Before producing these indicators, a data audit was commissioned to check the methods used, and tighter rules of collection were introduced for the survey from which the first set of employment indicators was produced.

Subsequent surveys have also been audited.

The article also states that the benchmarks for the employment indicators ignore location. This is not true: benchmarks include two institutional factors that are based on employment in the locality.

Taylor's comments are based on out-of-date perceptions of the way employment figures are collected.

He seems unaware of the survey, the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education, which will replace the First Destination Survey for this year's graduates.

This new survey will include information on job quality, and there will be a follow-up survey of a sample of students three years after graduation.

John Rushforth
Director (widening participation)
Higher Education Funding Council for England

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

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns