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Education

Highest qualification

Disabled adults were less likely than non-disabled adults to have formal educational qualifications. In 2013, 67 percent of disabled adults held a formal qualification, compared with 85 percent of non-disabled adults. The gap was particularly evident at the level of university qualifications, with just 12 percent of disabled adults having a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared with 25 percent of non-disabled adults.

The educational profile of disabled people is reflected in their over-representation in lower-skilled occupations.

Bar graph showing highest educational qualification for adults 15 years and over by disability status in 2013. Highest qualification on x axis and percent of adults on y axis. Disabled adults were less likely than non-disabled adults to have formal educational qualifications.

Among disabled adults there was little difference between men and women in terms of educational attainment. However, a considerable difference by age group was evident. Those aged 65+ were most likely to hold no formal qualification (42 percent) compared with 31 percent of those aged 45–64, and 24 percent of those aged 15–44. Disabled adults aged 65+ were also the least likely to hold university qualifications (8 percent compared with 14 percent of 15–44-year-olds and 14 percent of 45–64-year-olds).

This pattern of lower levels of qualifications in the older age groups mirrors that in the non-disabled population, although disabled adults tend to be less qualified than non-disabled across all age groups. 
 

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