More women graduate from vocational colleges

Six years after enrolling at vocational colleges, 56 percent of men and 64 percent of women had graduated. Students in technical and health care disciplines are most likely to graduate. One and a half times as many men as women leave vocational colleges without qualifying.

Four in ten women graduate within four years

In study years 1991/’92 to 1995/’96, an average 54 thousand students enrolled for the first time in a full-time study at a vocational college. About half of each cohort are women. Four years later on average 40 percent of the women and 30 percent of the men had graduated. After six years men had made up some of this lost ground: 56 percent of them had graduated, compared with 64 percent of women. The proportion of students who graduate within four years has increased in recent years.

Graduation rates for vocational colleges after 4 and 6 years

Highest graduation rates for technical and health care disciplines

In all sectors of vocational colleges, relatively fewer men than women graduate. Graduation rates are highest for the technical sciences sector. Sixty-five percent of men and 71 percent of women who enrolled in these sectors in 1995/’96 had graduated six years later. Health care students also do well: 71 percent of women in this sector had graduated within six years, the same percentage as for technical sciences.

Graduation rates for cohort 1995 after 6 years, by sector

Many switchers among pedagogy students

Male students in pedagogical disciplines are least likely to graduate. After six years only 41 percent of them have received a diploma. Students in these disciplines relatively often switch to a different discipline. Six percent of male and eight percent of female pedagogy students ultimately graduate in another sector.

Vwo pupils do best at vocational college

Students going to vocational college after pre-university education (vwo) are most likely to graduate. After six years, 75 percent of women and 65 percent of men who had done vwo graduated. For men, graduation rates were lowest for those coming from general secondary education (havo): 47 percent. For women the lowest graduation rates were for those having done senior vocational education (mbo): 61 percent after six years.

Graduation rates for cohort 1995 after 6 years, by previous education

Men more often leave college without a diploma

Four years after enrolling in 1995/’96, one quarter of male students had left vocational college without graduating. Two years later this had risen to nearly 30 percent.

For women these percentages are 19 and 21 respectively.

Kees Gordijn