What 13,000 Year 11 students think about careers education and work experience

By Louise Archer (Professor of Sociology of Education, King’s College London)

Professor Louise Archer discusses the findings from a report based on 13,421 Year 11 students regarding their opinions and experiences of careers education and work experience.

What did the report find?

  • 63% of students had received any form of careers education
  • 57% of students reported to be satisfied with the careers education they received
  • 45% of students had experienced a work experience placement

Who is missing out?

  • Provision is ‘patchy’ and ‘patterned’
  • Students who experienced more careers advice were more likely to report high levels of satisfaction
  • ‘Underserved’ groups and those who could benefit most were not accessing careers education
  • Boys were 1.27 times more likely to receive careers education
  • Those with higher levels of cultural capital were 1.49 times more likely to receive careers education
  • Students in the north-east, north-west and Yorkshire were significantly less likely to have participated in work experience

What do the students say?

  • Careers education by Year 11 is too late to be effective
  • Students are reluctant to attend careers sessions that are not compulsory
  • They want advice to be impartial and unbiased

The findings are based on the report ASPIRES 2 Project Spotlight: Year 11 Students’ Views of Careers Education and Work Experience by Louise Archer and Julie Moote. Department of Education and Professional Studies, King’s College London. Download the report here. Read a summary here.