Author Topic: What are Statistics not telling readers!  (Read 94 times)

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Offline ArtofFugue

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  • What are Statistics not telling readers!
    « on: April 03, 2018, 12:40:34 PM »
    What Are The Statistics Not Telling Us?


    Now that we have established what the statistics are telling us, let’s look at five things they are not telling us. [Words in blue and square brackets are my own.]

    #1 Unemployment Data By MOM Excludes Those Without Work Experience [Deliberate Exclusion of Data]
    The first thing to know is that the unemployment rate reported by MOM does not include unemployed residents who do not have work experience yet. Hence, if a fresh graduate is unable to find a job, this will not count towards the unemployment rate for PMETs, even though there is an individual who is out there looking for a job.

    #2 Response Rate Among Graduates Is Not 100%
    Unless a survey is made compulsory, it will always suffer from what researchers call a “non-response bias”. Non-response bias is the bias that results when respondents and their answers are likely to be different from the people who do not respond. In this case, it’s possible that graduates who respond to the surveys are more likely to be employed as compared to those who do not respond.
    Basically, the higher the non-response rate, the higher the chances that the results may be bias and less accurate.

    #3 Surveys Do Not Account For Graduates Who Are On Scholarships [Improper Data which should be excluded]
    One of the areas that is never reported in job surveys are the graduates who already have a job waiting for them upon graduation. These are the students who are on scholarship, such as SAF regulars, NIE teachers as well as those that are on scholarships offered by private companies.
    For example, NIE graduates (i.e. MOE teachers) from NTU have a 100% employment rate. All these statistics obviously skewed the graduate employment results.
    If you are a non-scholar graduate from a local university, then you need to be mindful that the graduate employment statistics reported may be an overestimate and that the actual figures will be lower once students who are on scholarships are excluded from the count.

    #4 Some Courses Typically Lead To Guaranteed Employment
    Not all courses create equal job opportunities.
    For example, if you are an undergraduate enrolled in a Bachelor of Dental Surgery (i.e. dentist) or Bachelor of Medicine And Bachelor Of Surgery (i.e. doctor) from NUS, you are essentially guaranteed a job upon graduation. Both these courses reported 100% employment rate.
    We are not saying that we should deliberately exclude these courses from the graduate employment survey, as that will make the survey results inaccurate. Rather, what we are saying is that the overall number released may not be an accurate reflection on the ease of employment for individual courses.
    For example, among Bachelor of Arts students from NUS, full-time permanent employment rate is at 61.9%, as compared to the overall 79.9% among graduates from all local universities. In NTU, Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Chemistry & Biological Chemistry graduates reported a full-time permanent employment rate of just 51.1% upon six months after the final examinations. This is a far cry than the headline figure of almost 80%.

    #5 Underemployment [Unreported Half-truths]
    Underemployment occurs when a person is employed in a role that isn’t a good reflection of the person’s ability or qualifications. For example, a finance graduate who was unable to secure a full-time job in a bank may end up taking other roles, such as an administration role.
    This isn’t to say that being an administrative job isn’t a good job. It very well could be. Rather, what we are saying here is that graduates who end up taking these jobs full-time will not be reflected as being unable to find full-time job, because they already have a full-time job.
    The statistics simply show that the number of people who have landed themselves a permanent full-time employment, even if most of them are working outside of their preferred area of expertise.


    Statistics is full of half-truths!

    (*Disclaimer: Not being anti-statistics but urges all to exercise caution when reading statistics.)
    « Last Edit: April 03, 2018, 12:44:36 PM by ArtofFugue »
    By people sharing knowledge/info publicly, the info itself does not devalue to become "common internet data which lacks credibility and needs verifying". If everyone thinks in this way, nobody would want to share anymore in order to protect the value and integrity of their knowledge.

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    What are Statistics not telling readers!
    « on: April 03, 2018, 12:40:34 PM »
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