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Scotland

  • There are over 5,500 employers in the lifelong learning sector in Scotland. These include:

- 43 further education colleges

- 20 higher education institutions, including the Open University

- Over 5,000 community learning and development providers including youth work organisations (the voluntary sector is an important part of the lifelong learning sector in Scotland)

- Approximately 88 libraries and archives services

- Over 380 work-based learning providers

  • 80% employ less than 10 staff, which is in line with the lifelong learning sector throughout the rest of the UK.
  • The lifelong learning sector in Scotland accounts for a total output (at basic prices) of almost £1.2 billion. The Gross Value Added for the sector is over £300 million.

Workforce statistics:

  • Approximately 132,000 people work in the lifelong learning sector in Scotland. This is around 12% of the UK lifelong learning workforce.
  • 46% of the workforce is aged between 45-64 years, compared with 38% across all sectors in Scotland.
  • Within the libraries workforce, 67% is aged 45 years and over. More critically almost half of this workforce is due to retire within the next ten years.
  • 55% of the workforce in Scotland is female, compared with 47% across all sectors in Scotland.
  • 72% of the lifelong learning workforce in Scotland is employed full-time, compared with 75% across all sectors in Scotland.
  • 46% of the workforce is employed in professional occupations such as lecturers and trainers. 16% are employed in associate professional occupations, such as learning support staff and instructors.

Qualification profile of the workforce:

  • 69% of the workforce is qualified to Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) Level 8 equivalent or above, compared with 38% across all sectors in Scotland.
  • In the archives workforce, over 80% of the workforce report that their staff hold a higher degree or equivalent (SCQF level 11).
  • In community learning and development, 53% of the workforce (including youth workers) who work more than 10 hours per week in the public sector in Scotland hold a Community Learning and Development (CLD) Standards Council approved qualification at SCQF Level 9 equivalent or above.
  • In further education, 67% of academic staff in Scotland’s colleges hold professional teaching qualifications at SCQF Level 7 to 11.
  • In higher education, 71% of higher education academic staff are qualified to first or further degree level (SCQF Level 9 and above).
  • In libraries, 60% of the workforce holds a qualification at SCQF Level 8 or above.
  • In work-based learning, more than 30% of work-based learning trainers in Scotland are qualified to degree level (SCQF Level 9 to 10).

Employment trends and future projections

  • Despite forecasts of falling workforce numbers in some occupational groups, overall the lifelong learning sector in Scotland is likely to experience an increase in demand.
  • It is estimated that approximately 56,000 people will need to be recruited into the sector over the next ten years, to fill vacancies largely created by existing staff going into retirement.

Source: The lifelong learning workforce in Scotland Factsheet 2009