Education

Details of the study members' schooling and education have been collected since the age of six (1952). In the early years, details of absences from school were collected, and in 1953 information began to be collected on their schooling and educational progress.

In 1962, when the first study members left school, details were collected of the qualifications that the study member had obtained. These have been updated throughout adulthood. In 1962 and 1965, study members who went on to further education and/or university were asked about their attitudes to further and higher education, whereas those who were in employment were asked about on the job training and part-time or evening classes.

In 1966 and 1968 details of any part-time, evening classes or correspondence courses and exams passed were collected.  In 1971 details of any qualifications since leaving school were recorded and any courses between 1969 and 1971 were recorded and in 1972 record of courses and qualifications made and any on-job training received.


The key summary education variable (LHQR) is a derived variable that indicates the highest level of educational qualifications achieved by age 26 years, according to the Burnham scale.

Subsequent questions on training courses and higher and further education were asked in 1982 and 1989. LHQR has been updated to include further education up to age 43, the overall summary education variable is TOTEDUC1543, which has been coded into five categories:

  • No qualifications
  • Vocational only
  • O level or equivalent
  • A level or equivalent
  • Higher

Obtaining the education standard variables

  • You can obtain a list of the standard topic variables to use in an NSHD data sharing request by selecting the link at the end of this page.
  • The XML version of the link can be sent to the LHA as part of a data sharing request.
  • Simply use your browser's Save As facility to save the list of variables to a file on your computer.
  • You can then email the XML version to us in support of your application, or when you fill in the data access application form and it asks which variables you need, mention the 'education standard basket' along with any others.


Please Note that the education standard basket only contains very few summary variables, with no detail on subjects taken at school, feelings on education, or education in later life. Education is an extremely broad subject, with data from many different years, so you are strongly advised to investigate this subject in more detail on Skylark.

HTML version of the standard variables to view

Download the XML for the education standard basket