Hard lessons for lifelong learners? Age and experience in the graduate labour market

Purcell, K., Wilton, N. and Elias, P. (2007) Hard lessons for lifelong learners? Age and experience in the graduate labour market. Higher Education Quarterly, 61 (1). pp. 57-82. ISSN 0951-5224 Available from: http://eprints.uwe.ac.uk/14505

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2273.2006.00338.x


The expansion of the higher education system and widening access to undergraduate study has led to growing diversity within the graduate labour supply, including increasing numbers who studied for their degrees as mature students. Analysis of graduates entering the labour market prior to the major expansion in the early 1990s indicated that those over the age of 30 had considerably more difficulty than younger graduates in accessing the career opportunities for which their education had equipped them. Is this still the case for more recent graduates? Drawing on a major qualitative and quantitative study of a class of graduates who completed their undergraduate degree courses in 1995, this paper explores early career development and employment outcomes according toage at graduation. Although we find considerable diversity among all age groups, mature graduates were more likely than their younger peers to experience difficulty in accessing appropriate employment, had a lower rate of earnings growth and expressed higher levels of dissatisfaction with their jobs.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:age, inequality, graduates, higher education, labour market, employment
Faculty/Department:Faculty of Business and Law > Department of Business Management
ID Code:14505
Deposited By: Dr N. Wilton
Deposited On:13 May 2011 14:18
Last Modified:16 Sep 2016 07:30

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