Undergraduate placements are a great opportunity for interactions between academic institutions and companies, with a high level of mutual benefit for both. Undergraduate students can gain valuable industrial training and experience in one of the UK’s leading sectors, which can often lay the groundwork for future careers, whereas companies gain access to highly-skilled talent which can add great value to their business.
There has been an increase in the number of shorter, 2–3-month-long IPs, 44% of which were in manufacturing. This contrasts with the more common 12-month-long IPs, of which only 13% were in manufacturing. For IPs outside of R&D and manufacturing, there has been a 118% increase in the number of IT placements since 2015, possibly reflecting the importance placed on digital data analytics by companies. Only two placement students were registered at institutions outside of the UK, both of which were in France.