Young women keener on uni than male peers

Young women keener on uni than male peers
Students in a library. File photo: Shutterstock
Six out of ten Swedish students about to graduate from high school (gymnasium) want to pursue higher education, but many more young women than men showed an interest in university.

The survey from Statistics Sweden showed that 69 percent of the women plan on going on to study, while 48 percent of the men expressed the same intention.

Students enrolled in vocational high-school programmes were less interested in university  – 38 percent of the women and 14 percent of the men said they planned to study further within three years of graduation. When asked if they would consider studying again after a three-year gap or longer, half of vocational students said they were interested in further studies at some point in life.

One tenth of vocational students who took part in the Statistics Sweden study said their school did not offer them the courses required to get the academic credit required to apply to university. 

The study found that vocational students were more interested in working in healthcare or becoming teachers in the future than their peers studying academic subjects in high school. 

The differences between men and women was less marked among students in the natural sciences high-school programme (naturvetenskapslinjen), where students in general more often said they had plans to go onto university immediately or within three years of graduation.

In general, women with plans to study further were more interested in economics and social sciences. Men tended to go for technology and natural science as their first choice instead.

The most popular universities among the Swedish students were Gothenburg University and Lund University. Other popular choices were the universities in Stockholm and Uppsala.

The survey was based on information from 5,014 students set to graduate this year.

Anders Sjölin

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