4. Postgraduate Taught Graduates
Postgraduate Taught Graduates: This includes graduates from Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Taught Masters programmes.
Overview of Graduate Population
- 22,508 Postgraduate Taught Graduates
- This consists of 79% Taught Masters, 12% PG Diplomas, and 8% PG Certificates
- 55% female; 44% male
- The most common fields of study are Business, Administration & Law (34.6%), Education (11.2%), and Health & Welfare (14.2%)
Main Graduate Destination
89.7% in employment 9 months after graduation
Nine months after graduation, 89.7% of Postgraduate Taught graduates are in employment. In 2020, this was 84.9% and 88.4% in 2018. The proportion of graduates pursuing further study remained steady, at 3.6% in 2021, and 4% in 2020.
Unemployment has decreased, at 4.6% in 2021, down from 8.9% in 2020. Largest decreases in unemployment are observed in Services (3.2% in 2021; 9.6% in 2020), Arts & Humanities (8.8% in 2021; 15.6% in 2020) and Business, Administration & Law (4.2% in 2021; 10.3% in 2020).
This section relates only to Postgraduate Taught graduates who are in employment nine months after graduation (89.7%).
58.6% employed in Professional Occupations
Almost 3 in 5 Postgraduate Taught graduates (58.6%) are employed in Professional Occupations, nine months after graduation. This is compared to 49% at Undergraduate Honours Degree level.
While 61.6% of females are employed in Professional Occupations, only 55.1% of males are employed in Professional Occupations. Nonetheless, a higher proportion of males are employed as Managers, Directors and Senior Officials (10.3%) than females (7.5%).
The most common sectors of employment for females are Education (22.6%), Human Health & Social Work Activities (17%), and Professional, Scientific & Technical Activities (11%). In contrast, the most common sectors for males are Financial, Insurance & Real Estate Activities (16.3%), Professional, Scientific & Technical Activities (14.7%) and Information & Communication (12.9%).
50.4% employed in Dublin
Most Postgraduate Taught graduates are employed in Ireland (89.2%), while 10.8% are employed Overseas.
Of those working in Ireland, Dublin is the most common county of employment (50.4%), followed by Cork (13.3%) and Galway (5.5%). Combined, these three counties account for 69.2% of Postgraduate Taught employment in Ireland. At Undergraduate Honours Degree level, this is 64%.
59% earning more than €35,000 per annum
Almost one-third of graduates do not disclose their salaries (32.2%). Of those who disclose their salaries, more than half (59%) earn more than €35,000 per annum. This is in contrast to 33.2% of Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates.
Meanwhile, 10.7% of Postgraduate Taught graduates earn less than €25,000 per annum. This is in contrast to 1 in 5 Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates (19.8%).
Nearly half of Postgraduate Taught graduates earning less than €14,999 per annum are graduates in part-time employment.
Over 1 in 4 completed Internships
Internships are less common at Postgraduate Taught level, compared to Undergraduate Honours Degree level. Only 28.5% of Postgraduate Taught graduates have completed internships, compared to 53% of Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates. Only 21.2% of Business, Administration & Law graduates completed internships. At Undergraduate Honours Degree level, more than 4 in 10 (42.2%) completed internships as part of their course.
At Postgraduate Taught level, 7.7% of internships less than 6 weeks long, compared to 6.4% at Undergraduate Honours Degree level. Similarly, 69.5% of Postgraduate Taught internships are more than 4 months long, while 74.7% of Honours Degree internships are more than 4 months long.
71.8% state that their course is relevant to their job
Nearly 3 in 4 believe that their course is relevant to their job (71.8%). For Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates, this is 62.8%.
Nearly one-sixth of Arts & Humanities graduates consider their course Very Irrelevant to their job (15.3%). At Undergraduate Honours Degree level, this is 27.7%.
Looking at need for qualification, 16.8% of Postgraduate Taught graduates are already in the job. At Undergraduate Honours Degree level, this tends to be less common, at 6.2%.
20.3% already worked there
The three most common sources of employment include already working there (20.3%), Recruitment Sites (20.1%) and Social Media (15.2%).
Source of employment differs for Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates, where Personal Contacts have a larger role to play, accounting for 19.8% of employment.
Further Study Outcomes
This section relates only to graduates in further study nine months after graduation. Of all Postgraduate Taught graduates, only 3.6% pursue further study.
1 in 2 pursue Doctoral programmes
Of Taught Masters graduates who pursue further study, 51.3% pursue Doctoral programmes, while 24% pursue another Taught Masters. For Postgraduate Diploma graduates pursuing further study, the most common choice is to pursue a Taught Masters (31.9%).
At Postgraduate Taught level, most graduates pursuing further study tend to pursue further study in the same field of study.
18.8% pursued further study to change / improve career options
The most common reasons for pursuing further study are to develop a broader or more specialist range of skills or knowledge (22%), because it is a requirement for finding and progressing in future employment (19.5%) and to change or improve career options (18.8%).
Moreover, only 11.8% of graduates in 2021 pursue further study because they had enjoyed their first course and wanted to continue studying. In 2020, this was 6.6%.
Engaged in Other Activities or Unemployed
In 2021, 4.6% of graduates are unemployed nine months after graduation. Moreover, 2.1% are engaged in other activities and not looking for work. This section relates only to Postgraduate Taught graduates who are Engaged in Other Activities or Unemployed nine months after graduation.
56% have been looking for a job since graduation
In 2021, 56% of Unemployed graduates have been unemployed and looking for a job since graduation. In 2018, this was 50.6% and 58.4% in 2020. Similar to Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates, resignation from employment as a reason for unemployment is less common in 2021 than in 2018. For Postgraduate Taught graduates, 10.6% resigned to seek employment elsewhere, up from 6.3% in 2020 but down from 12.3% in 2018.
This section relates to all Postgraduate Taught graduates surveyed.
65.9% likely to study the same course again
In 2021, 65.9% of graduates are Very Likely or Likely to study the same course again. This is down from 70.6% in 2020.
The likelihood of studying the same course again is slightly lower for Postgraduate Taught graduates (65.9%) than Undergraduate Honours Degree graduates (66.5%).
Looking for more information?
More detailed outcomes for the Class of 2021 graduates are available as interactive dashboards at the following links:
Next Chapter: Postgraduate Research Graduates
Note: filtering can result in a low number of graduates that fit specific criteria. Any criteria that result in less than five graduates being represented are excluded from the graphs in this report. Nonetheless, the Total provided will be inclusive of any excluded fields.