Two thirds of trainee teachers last year were women, UCAS' postgraduate teacher training report reveals

More than twice as many women (19,025) as men (8,775) were placed on postgraduate teacher training programmes through UCAS Teacher Training last year.
Posted Wed 13 July 2016 - 11:11

More than twice as many women (19,025) as men (8,775) were placed on postgraduate teacher training programmes through UCAS Teacher Training last year, the admissions service reports today. The figures mean that for every man who entered the profession, two women did so.

These differences mostly arise because twice as many women (31,215) as men (15,885) apply to be teachers, UCAS said.

In total, 27,800 people were accepted through the UCAS Teacher Training scheme last year; a rise of 7% on 2014, although applicant numbers fell by 6% to 47,100.

UCAS manages applications to most postgraduate teacher training programmes in England and Wales, including higher education programmes, school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT), and School Direct programmes.

Other key findings in the UCAS Teacher Training End of Cycle Report 2015, which was published today:

Acceptances to teacher training in England increased (+7.6%) but acceptances to providers in Wales decreased (-14.3%).

The acceptance rate (the proportion of applicants gaining a place) in 2015 was 59% (up from 52% last year).

Teacher training programmes in schools (School Direct and SCITT) accounted for 44% of all students in 2015, up from 36% in 2014. Universities and colleges continue to accept the largest group of trainee teachers (56%).

Young people who enter teacher training shortly after graduating are the largest group. Typically, trainee teachers are aged 21 to 23 years old.

Around one in 35 people who enter undergraduate higher education go on to postgraduate teacher training soon after graduating.

Some of the highest application rates to teaching are seen from graduates who have been studying science or mathematics at university – around one in ten mathematics graduates applies to teacher training programmes.

The report also looks at the background of graduates who apply to teacher training programmes

Graduates from the least advantaged backgrounds are the most likely to apply to postgraduate teacher training programmes. However, as the gap between rich and poor is already large at undergraduate level, there are over twice as many teacher training applicants from the most advantaged areas as the least.

The proportional breakdown of applicants across ethnic groups is similar to the mix of young people in each group.

Among commonly reported parental occupations, graduates whose parents are electricians, police officers, or teachers were the most likely to apply.

Those graduates least likely to apply to teaching include those whose parents are medical practitioners, solicitors, lawyers, judges, and coroners.

Over half of those accepted for postgraduate teacher training held A level grades at BBC or lower. Around three quarters of entrants to teacher training had A level grades of ABB or lower, while around one in six had grades of AAA or higher. 

Notes to editors

UCAS Teacher Training has been running for two years, and is the second largest scheme UCAS operates, after the full-time undergraduate admissions service.

Other routes into teacher training exist across these countries, including undergraduate degrees with QTS, Teach First, and Troops to Teachers. Applications for these courses are not managed through the UCAS Teacher Training scheme and are not included in this analysis.

The 2014 cycle included providers in England, Wales, and Scotland, while the 2015 cycle contained providers in England and Wales only, and so figures for the 2014 cycle have been adjusted to account for the reduction from Scottish providers and their applicants.

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