Women in STEM Apprenticeships 2018/9

The percentage of core STEM apprenticeships started by females has, once again, increased, so that in the 2018-9 academic year one in ten core-STEM apprenticeships were started by females. The number of starts at higher level by females has increased from 200 in 2014/5 to 2,760 in 2018/9.

There was a sizeable year on year drop in the total numbers of core-STEM apprenticeship achievements at intermediate level, and a smaller drop at advanced level, with a small rise in numbers at higher level. However, the number of females completing core-STEM apprenticeships at advanced and higher levels increased year on year.

Engineering & Manufacturing Technologies

After a drop last year, the percentage of engineering apprenticeships started by females has increased again, to 8%. However, the percentage of higher apprenticeships started by females has fallen slightly once again.

The percentage of engineering apprenticeship completions by females has declined to just 6%, and the number has dropped by a third, from 3,340 in 2017/8 to 2,210 in 2018/9.

Construction & The Built Environment

The percentage of construction apprenticeships started by females continued to increase in 2018/9, so that it now stands at 6%. The percentage of intermediate apprenticeships has flatlined at just 2%, with the female increase mostly coming at higher apprenticeship level – continuing the trend of recent years. The number of female construction apprenticeship starts in 2018/9 was 1,450 – an increase from the 1,060 in 2017/8, even as the male number of starts declined slightly.

The percentage of achievements by females is still just 2%, but again the percentage of higher apprenticeship certificates in construction which are awarded to females has increased. This should continue to increase in the future, given the increasing percentage of starts by females at that level.

Information & Communication Technology

The picture for ICT apprenticeships is rosier than in engineering and construction. Females now account for a fifth (20%) of starts and although the percentage of ICT apprenticeship completions by females has stalled year on year, that’s because of a big drop in the female percentage of achievements at intermediate level. In 2018/9, females accounted for 15% of completions at higher level – and this should continue to increase in future years given the positive trend in starts.

As in other subject areas, the numbers of females starting and completing ICT advanced and higher apprenticeships are increasing, while the numbers starting and completing them at intermediate level are falling. 150 females completed a higher-level ICT apprenticeship in 2018/9, compared with 60 in 2014/5.

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