Education and Training for 16 - 18 Year Olds: Individual Paths and National Trends


The reform of education and training at 16+ is the subject of lively debate. Politicians, employers, teachers, parents - all have prescriptions. This book aims to inform the debate by describing all the choices that young people make within the present system, and the consequences of those choices. The book is based on an extensive and continuing survey of young people in England and Wales, the Youth Cohort Study. It traces the fortunes of five national cohorts who reached 16 between the mid-1980s and early 1990s, following each group through their first few years after the end of compulsory schooling. The book covers:

  • Full-time education: academic and vocational courses, and sixth form or FE college options; one-year courses, drop- out and transfers; choosing science and mathematics.
  • The youth labour market: the jobs open to young people; Youth Training, apprenticeships and employer-funded training.
  • Influences on young people's choices: the role of careers guidance; factors that encourage; staying on in full-time education.
  • The longer-term returns from different choices: effects on qualifications, job chances and earnings in early adulthood.