Across all three broad funding types for adult learning, there are greatly more female learners than male learners. 

The proportion of female learners rises to over 70% when looking at those on Basic Skills and GCSE courses, which account for over 23,000 learners. 

In For Employment provision the reverse is in evidence where male learners outnumber female learners at least two to one, with the greatest gap in Construction Gateway which had over 95% of enrolments by male learners. 

Looking at subject and sectors, more than two thirds of learners in the following areas were female 

And on the following areas, more than two thirds of learners were male: 


Across all funding types, there are more learners identifying in the broad White group than those in the broad Asian, Black or Mixed Heritage groups.

There is greatest ethnic diversity in AEB funded provision where 53% of learners identify as White, compared with Advanced Learner Loans or Free Courses for Jobs provision where this is 70% and 65% respectively. 

When looking at the broad location where the learners live, there is far greater diversity in learners living in the WMCA area which is in line with local resident profiles reported in Census 2021.  

Subject areas which have the greatest ethnic diversity are Basic Skills English and Maths, ESOL, ICT and GCSEs. 

Areas where there the mix of backgrounds are broadly in line with the average are Preparation for Life and Work, Travel, Construction, Engineering, Motor Vehicle, Hospitality, Child Development and Education and Humanities etc. 

There is over-representation of learners identifying in the broad White group on Media, Business Administration, Retail, Art and Design, Sport, Health, Nursing and Care. 

LLDD status 

Approximately 15% of CWM adult learners disclose a disability, learning difficulty and/or a health problem. The proportion is slightly lower when just looking at those resident in the WMCA area. 


In 2021/22 43% of CWM learners were residing in the most deprived locations, compared with 28% of all people living in these areas. At the other end of the deprivation spectrum, CWM learners were under-represented. 

When looking at other funding types, it’s clear that AEB funding is accessed by residents in the most deprived areas and Advanced Learner Loan funding is less in evidence in the same group.