EngineeringUK comment on the release of GCSE exam results

Aug 24, 2023

Beth Elgood, Director of Communications at EngineeringUK, commented: 

“Congratulations to everyone receiving their GCSE results today.  

At EngineeringUK we want to see more young people from all backgrounds progressing into engineering and technology and it’s encouraging to see some increases in those taking the GCSE subjects that offer pathways into those careers.  

The modest increase in the numbers taking design & technology means around 87,000 students studied D&T at this level, while computing has seen a 11.6% uplift in entries, representing around 9,500 more students year on year. Overall, the numbers taking sciences has increased roughly in line with the number of entries (up 3.4%). Entries for physics increased by 3.2%, chemistry by 3.5%, biology by 2.6% and double science by 3.5%. And we are pleased that, while overall numbers remain small, there’s been an 8.1% increase in the number of students taking GCSE Engineering and a 23% increase for construction and the built environment. 

However, despite these increases, the gender split across some of these GCSE subjects is a concern. While the rise in design & technology entries is driven by girls (up 4.79%) the proportion of girls taking D&T remains less than a third (31%), while girls account for just 21% of entries for computing, 17% for engineering and 10% for construction. 

If the UK is to have the engineering and tech workforce it needs to thrive, we’d like to see many of the young people getting their results today - particularly girls given female underrepresentation in engineering and technology careers - building on their learning with continued study or training in these subject areas.”  

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