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13th Nov 2018
New research has revealed that women face a pay gap as early as their first year after university, which widens further over time.
Figures released by the government on the careers of British graduates show that men were much more likely to achieve higher pay compared to their female peers, despite graduating in the same year with degrees in the same subjects.
The one exception to the rule was in English, where women received higher pay five years after leaving university.
But the research found the gender pay gap varied between both institutions and subjects. In nursing, a course predominately chosen by women, men were still earning around £2,000 more just a year after graduation.
Another example is Law, where female graduates from Oxford and Essex earned higher pay compared to men, five years after starting work.
However, Pam Tatlow, chief executive of the Million Plus group of modern institutions, suggested the data could be misleading as it failed to include mature students and the self-employed. The figures also failed to adjust earnings based on location, ensuring graduates from universities in and around London received the highest pay post-graduation.
Commenting on the findings, Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of the Universities UK lobby group, said: "Across all universities and courses, official figures show that graduates in the UK are still more likely to be in employment. On average, they continue to earn substantially more than non-graduates.
"However, graduate salaries are not the only measure of success in higher education. Many students seek rewarding careers where high salaries are not their only motivation."
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