Graduate Outcomes & Disability – Main Graduate Destination

These results are graduate outcomes for graduates with a disability, compared to those without. This analysis considers the main destination after graduation: employment, further study, unemployment or other activity.

Main Destination

The chart shows that 69% of graduates with a disability were in employment nine months after graduation (full-time, part-time or due to start a job); and this figure ranged from 57% to 74% depending on the nature of the disability. This compares with 74% of graduates with no disability.

Postgraduate employment rates were higher than undergraduates employment rates among all graduates, with and without a disability.

The proportion of graduates with a disability pursuing further study (full-time or part-time) was 20%, compared with 19% of graduates with no disability.  The figures for those with a disability ranged between 17% of graduates with a learning disability and 25% for graduates with multiple disabilities.

A total of 7% of graduates with a disability were unemployed, compared with 5% of graduates with no disability.

Main destination Covid-19 Impact

The following chart shows the main destinations for graduates with a disability and graduates with no disability in 2019 and 2021.  The Covid pandemic struck in March 2020 and the Irish economy was still under a number of restrictions in 2021.  Therefore the pandemic had an effect on graduate employment for 2021 outcomes.  These two years (2019 and 2021) can be considered to be a comparison of pre-pandemic and late-pandemic outcomes.

Across nearly all graduate groups (excluding graduates with a physical condition) employment was higher in 2019 than 2021.  However, further study as a destination in 2021 had increased across all groups (except graduates with physical conditions).

  • 72% of graduates with a disability were in employment before the pandemic began in 2019; this figure fell to 64% in 2021 (an 8 percentage point decrease).
  • 75% of graduates with no disability were in employment before the pandemic began in 2019; this figure fell to 72% in 2021 (a 3 percentage point decrease).
  • Graduates with a physical condition experienced higher employment in 2021 than in 2019 (57% vs 59%); however, the total number of graduates is small and that should be borne in mind when considering this result.
  • Unemployment rose for all graduate groups between 2019 and 2021.  For graduates without a disability, unemployment rose from 4% to 6%.  For graduates with a disability, unemployment rose from 6% to 9%.  However, it should be noted that unemployment was higher for graduates of certain fields of study than others; due to the sectors of employment that graduates were most likely to enter and the uneven impact of pandemic employment restrictions.

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