Almost a Third of UK Parents Believe Their Children Will Need a Degree to be Successful

    • Over half would prefer their children to have fulfilling careers over high earnings
    • Over half said they believed an undergraduate degree or masters is key to success
    • Only 3% of parents thought their children could be successful with GCSEs

New research conducted by the Association of British Dispensing Opticians found that 32% of parents in the UK believe an undergraduate degree is the key to a successful career. This rises to more than half (58%) when master’s degrees are taken into consideration. In contrast to this, only 3% believed that GCSEs would allow their children to enjoy a successful career, despite the fact that degree-equivalent qualifications can be earned through many routes.

More than 4 in 10 (43%) parents would advise their children to go into medicine, 30% would advise a legal career, and 29% would suggest dentistry, but only 16% would direct their children to specialise in optics, despite high earning potential and strong job security.

The research showed that earnings aren’t as important to parents as overall satisfaction, with half (50%) saying that they’d prefer their children to be fulfilled, while only 31% said that high earnings should be a priority. Respondents who were aged 55+ were most concerned with fulfilment and least concerned about earnings, suggesting experience has influenced how they feel about work. Job security was also high on the list at 48%.There is only a 0.88% unemployment rate among opticians and the job allows opportunities for satisfying career progression and long-term financial success.

Aspiring opticians can ‘learn while they earn’, with flexible training available to those with GCSEs and A-levels looking to achieve a diploma or degree level qualification alongside membership of a professional body, and distance learning access courses available for those who need to brush up their skills first.

The Association of British Dispensing Opticians is launching a new training facility for aspiring opticians, the ABDO National Resource Centre, to gain qualifications and pursue a rewarding career. Opening on the 19th of September, the centre will educate aspiring opticians, and prepare them for a career in optics.

Students at the centre will enjoy lecture areas for 60 to 160 people and state of the art equipment for dispensing spectacles, screening for eye disease, training for practitioners to offer minor eye conditions services and spectacle glazing. The newest training on offer is in Minor Eye Conditions, a service which is growing across the UK, allowing opticians to be the first port of call for if you have a red, sore, itchy or irritated eye.