More women than men opt for high-level mbo subjects

24/02/2009 15:00

In secondary vocational education (mbo), women more often than men opt for training programmes at a higher level. Programmes with an emphasis on socio-pedagogical subjects are particularly popular.

Mbo students by level, 2007/’08*

Mbo students by level, 2007/’08*

At least level 3

In the school year 2007/’08, 513 thousand men and women attended mbo education. A gender breakdown shows that 63 percent of men and 77 percent of women attended mbo programmes at level 3 of higher, i.e. vocational, middle management or specialist training programmes.

Native Dutch mbo pupils more often attended mbo programmes at a higher level than those with a foreign background. This applies to both genders.

Socio-pedagogical work most popular among female students

In 2007/’08, socio-pedagogical work is by far the most popular subject among female mbo students, followed at a distance by jobs in retail. Another popular discipline among female mbo students is health care and welfare.

Within the ten most popular disciplines women with a foreign background prefer secretarial work and information services. They constitute a majority within these disciplines. Their share in nursing disciplines is fairly modest (14 percent).

Ten most popular disciplines among female mbo students, 2007/’08*

Ten most popular disciplines among female mbo students, 2007/’08*

Men prefer construction training programmes

Men largely opted for jobs in the construction sector in 2007/’08, often at a low level (assistant or basic vocational training). Men also relatively often opt for jobs in ICT and retail trade.

Men and women with a foreign background prefer administrative jobs. In accounting and business administration, nearly half of mbo students had a foreign background. 

Reversely, very few men (only 7 percent) with a foreign background are interested in jobs in agriculture and natural environment.

Ten most popular disciplines among male mbo students, 2007/’08*

Ten most popular disciplines among male mbo students, 2007/’08*

Theo van Miltenburg