Survey details Scots in study across UK

December 18, 1998

The first official survey of higher and further education participation by postcode has been completed in Scotland.

The Scottish Higher Education Funding Council survey shows the proportion of Scots going to university or college anywhere in the United Kingdom by area of domicile.

The SHEFC survey used the standardised participation ratio (SPR), which compares the number of students living in an area with the number that could be expected for the area if average national age and sex participation rates applied for the area's population. It also compared the estimated number of students for each postcode with the numbers they found in each area.

The average Scottish SPR was set at 100. Edinburgh has an average SPR of 125 and Glasgow 95. In some areas of Glasgow the SPR falls to 65.

Aberdeen had the highest average SPR, 137, perhaps reflecting its oil wealth and its good provision of higher and further education. In some areas of Aberdeen the SHEFC expected to find 160 higher education students but actually found 526. This compares with an estimated average per postocde for Edinburgh of 206 whereas the actual number was 237.

The survey shows educationists which areas need most attention if participation in higher education is to be widened.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is preparing a more detailed postcode survey.

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