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Teens turn to family first for advice on results day

On A-level results day, what advise will you give your child on university?


A study by careers expert Prospects found 84 per cent of students rely on family above all other forms of advice when making decisions about their future.

With students paying an average of 35 to 40 thousand pounds for their university experience and a record number being accepted into degree courses (3 per cent up from last year) it is no wonder parents find themselves handing out advice.

One issue that is being debated is how much does a degree improve your job prospects?

According to figures published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (Hesa), around 68 per cent of working graduates had a “professional” job six months after leaving university in 2014.

However, the Edge Foundation claims the true figure is closer to 40 per cent – and that graduates in some disciplines fare even worse.

Edge’s acting chief executive David Harbourne said: “So many of the professional occupations listed by Hesa can be accessed by people without degrees, who have vocational qualifications or who have worked their way up via an apprenticeship.

“The chances of getting a graduate job are far worse than official statistics make it seem.”

With so much hinging on the decision, experts are warning parents how influencing they can be.

In the study of 1,433 students, advice from family was clearly ranked above teachers.

69 per cent of under 18s turned to mum and dad for help deciding on a career or further education.

Only 53 per cent said friends and actual careers advisers ranked lowest at 50 per cent.

Charlie Ball, head of higher education intelligence at Prospects, said: “Family are clearly the power house behind education and career decisions for this age group,

“People are making important decisions about their future careers from their early teens, so this is a vital time for offering guidance.”

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