Research published today by the Association of University Teachers found almost a third of academics in UK higher education are more than 50 years old and in pre-1992 universities the figure rises to 35 per cent.
Education departments have the largest concentrations of older staff. Four times more staff are over 50 than are under 35. In the old universities, 40 per cent of education staff are over 50.
AUT general secretary David Triesman said: "The criis in teacher education is coming. The clock is ticking. Little seems to have been done to redress the recruitment, retention and retirement problems relating to the age of academic staff, their levels of pay and their increasingly casualised careers."
Research commissioned by the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals and partners, found the number of students studying education PhDs had halved in the past four years.
It found the minimum salary a year after graduate training for qualified teachers was higher that that of new university lecturers.
BEd in decline, 24