HC Deb 09 April 1964 vol 692 cc1191-2
9. Mr. Holland

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many students successfully completed science degree courses at United Kingdom universities in 1951, 1961 and 1963.

Sir E. Boyle

The number of first degrees in pure and applied science obtained by internal students at universities in Great Britain were as follows: 1951, 6,252; 1961, 9,300; 1963, 9,958.

Mr. Holland

Would my right hon. Friend agree, in the light of those figures, that the increasing additions in the number of qualified scientists to the total number in the country in recent years has given a flying send-off to the massive new programme of expansion on which we are now embarking?

Sir E Boyle

One must bear in mind, when considering these figures of the output of qualified scientists and technologists, the number of students who obtain external degrees and diplomas in technology and the number of other professional qualifications.

Mr. Lubbock

Do not the figures mask the trend of more and more students taking pure science while the proportion of technological students has remained constant? What steps is the Minister taking to correct this undesirable tendency.

Sir E. Boyle

When considering the technological figures, one should look at the 1956 White Paper, where it is shown that we sought 207,000 over eight years. It will be seen, from the present figure of 312,000, that we have more than exceeded the 1956 target.

Mr. W. Hamilton

Will the right hon. Gentleman say in what way these figures can be misinterpreted?

Sir E. Boyle

There is no reason for anyone to wish to misinterpret them, because they show that the targets laid down in the Government's White Paper of 1956 have been more than exceeded for scientists, technologists and technical teachers.