A-level students planning for postgrad…before even getting to uni

Two thirds of A-level students are already planning for their post graduate education, despite not having yet taken their A-level exams.

We teamed up with University of Sheffield to survey 511 UK students about their motivation in going ahead to post graduate study.

Findings revealed 68% of A-level students and 77% of under grads are planning to do a post grad, as the competition to stand out from fellow graduates intensifies.

Students say their main motivation is to enhance career prospects, choosing to do a post graduate course to stay competitive in the current job market. 62% believe having a post graduate degree will make significant difference to their employment chances and salary.

28% of students say the new government loan scheme is the main reason they will now study a post grad course. The government is providing loans of up to £10,000 in all post graduate subjects and are available from 2016-17.

When asked if they would continue to study at the same university as their undergraduate degree, 68% said they will choose to continue studying at a different university. 63% of A level students already say they plan to attend a different university at post grad level because they want to do their PG course at a more prestigious university than their undergrad degree.

​Al Carlile, Head of UK/EU Student Recruitment and Recruitment Support at the University of Sheffield, which has just announced 100 scholarships worth a total of £1 million to widen access to postgraduate study, said: “This research gives us an interesting insight into how A level students and undergraduates are thinking about postgraduate study. In a changing environment, with new postgraduate student loans and universities like Sheffield launching new postgraduate scholarships, learning more about when and how we should be providing effective information to help inform future choices is incredibly important.”

Jack Wallington from The Student Room says “For students interested in post grad study, there is a wealth of information on the courses offered direct from universities themselves and on sites like The Student Room. It’s an exciting time for post grad study, it gives students the opportunity to further steer their study into the career they are really interested in. I’d recommend to students going straight into post grad study to also seek work experience related to their course and career in order to further enhance their employability and be work ready.”

*The Student Room surveyed 511 students between 02nd– 08th February 2016

get our post grad fact sheet


Our research has been covered in the following publications, read more here;
Read The Independent article here 


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