Graduate Salary Levels
The UK HE International Unit's Gone International: Mobile students and their outcomes report showed that, six months after graduating:
- a lower proportion of graduates who had been mobile were unemployed
- a higher proportion of graduates who had been mobile were in more senior roles
- the average salary for graduates who had been mobile was higher if they were working in the UK
- a higher proportion of graduates who had been mobile were employed in sectors relating to 'Professional, scientific and technical activities'; 'Information and communication'; 'Education'; 'Manufacturing'; and 'Financial and insurance activities'
- a higher proportion of graduates who had been mobile were working abroad
It also found that the average starting salary for those working in the UK was higher (£20,520) for those who had spent time abroad compared to those who hadn't (£20,450). Although this amount may not seem significant, it is important to note that this was just six months after graduation. Moreover, when only looking at non-language students who were working in the UK, the disparity increases. There were also disparities favouring graduates with an international experience when considering those who spent time outside of Europe as well as when only considering students who achieved Firsts:
In addition, those who were working overseas 6 months after graduation were earning more than the average starting graduate salary. For example, the average salary for UK graduates working in China was £9,675 compared to the overall average graduate starting salary in China- £4,152.
The research showed that, overall, graduates who were mobile earned more than those who were not if they studied courses allied to the following subject areas:
- Biological Sciences
- Physical Sciences
- Computer Science
- Engineering and Technology
- Sociaql Studies
- Business and Administrative Studies
- Historical and Philosophical Studies
- Creative Arts and Design
This research also showed that of the top 6 sectors of employment for graduates who had been mobile, these graduates earned more than those who did not spend time abroad. The table below shows this in detail by sector. The figures in brackets represent the results when only considering graduates who had been mobile who were working in the UK 6 months after graduation.
Complementing the above figures, the Gone International report also shows that STEM graduates who were mobile who graduated in 2012/13 had an average starting salary of £22,440 compared to £21,800 for those who were not been mobile. This disparity is greater in different subject areas, for example in Computer Science where graduates who were mobile had an average starting salary of £25,260 compared to £22,690 for those who were not mobile. Another example is Engineering graduates who were mobile who earned an average of £26,070 compared to £24,530 for those who were not. More information about the outcomes for STEM students can be seen below:
The full report can be found here.
This is complementede by a 2009 study which found that 29% of students who had studied abroad were earning over £20,000, compared to 17% of students who had not studied abroad. The figure was even higher (37%) for students who had participated in an overseas work placement.
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